The country’s auto market just posted its biggest annual sales decline in decades—nearly 60 percent from the previous year—and this year’s outlook remains difficult due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It doesn’t help that the Department of Trade and Industry is set to impose new safeguard duties on imported vehicles, which many believe would affect retail prices.
But despite the bleak prospects there is still something positive to look forward to.
Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corp. recently shared that despite the current malaise in the industry, it posted a 30 percent month-on-month increase in retail sales—4,195 vehicles sold in December alone—enabling the Japanese automaker to close out 2020 with 37,366 total units sold.
“2020 was a very challenging year. Apart from the pandemic, we also experienced natural disasters such as the eruption of the Taal Volcano and several devastating typhoons. Despite these hurdles, I have to commend the men and women of MMPC and our dealer partners for exhibiting admirable resiliency and reflecting strong sales numbers last year. We are very grateful for all the support that we got from the market and we are inspired to do better this 2021,” said MMPC president and CEO Mutsuhiro Oshikiri.
He relayed that among the company’s top sellers in December include the Xpander (1,472 units), Montero Sport (957 units), Mirage G4 (911 units), and L300 (478 units). What is more interesting is that the company also sold 47 units of the Pajero, a P3 million premium 4WD SUV, which is set to retire this year after a 39-year run and more than 3.3 million sales globally.
“We truly appreciate the continuous patronage of the market towards our brand and products. We believe that our strong sales performance can be attributed to our wide array of vehicle line-up that are tailor fitted to the various demands brought about our customers,” said Oshikiri.
“MMPC is excited to kick-start the year on a high note. We are offering these aggressive promos to make sure that our customers will have an easy experience in availing of their Mitsubishi vehicle. We wish to play a significant part in their journey this 2021,” said Oshikiri.
But as MItsubishi’s products continue to appeal to its customers, Oshikiri said they will continue to place their ears on the ground to quickly acknowledge new demands and preference shifts of the market. “Our customer’s needs and demand will always be our guiding principle in designing our products.”
At the moment, Oshikiri said MMPC’s priority is to continue improving operations without compromising the health of its employees and dealer partners. “We have implemented several contactless procedures and maximized the use of the online platforms. We are happy with the new efficient methods that we have incorporated in our system.”
Charles E. Buban is an old timer in the Philippine automotive journalism scene. He first started covering the automotive beat in 2003, writing news and reviews of new models and car tech, among other car-related stuff. When not writing about cars, he could often be seen riding his mountain bike or doing long walks in the hope of catching a couple of legendary Pokemons.