Mitsubishi Motors sold fewer cars last year than at any time since it started compiling separate statistics as a scandal that involved covering up defects in its cars that led to fatal accidents undermined confidence in one of Japan's leading brands. The company said total sales of passenger cars last year dropped 214,000 to 1.3m compared with well over 1.5m in 2001, 2002 and 2003. Figures for before 2001 are unavailable as they are not separated from the company's sales of trucks, a spokesman said.
The numbers are in sharp contrast to the successful performance of other Japanese global &to=http:// english.pravda.ru/comp/2002/09/18/36816.html ' target=_blank>carmakers such as Toyota and Nissan, informs FT News.
MMC is part of the Mitsubishi group of companies, which includes companies that span most areas of the Japanese economy and are linked by a complex web of cross shareholdings and business relationships - all unified under the famous "three diamonds" logo.
Tokyo-based Mitsubishi Motors Corp. had racked up a 215 billion yen (US$2 billion; euro1.6 billion) loss the previous fiscal year. Sales for the year ended March 2005 totaled 2.1 trillion yen (US$19 billion; euro15 billion), down 16 percent from 2.5 trillion yen for the year through March 31 last year.
Mitsubishi Motors has seen its Japan sales plunge after acknowledging five years ago that it had systematically hidden auto defects to avoid recalls.
The losses reported Monday were slightly worse than what it had forecast in January. Global vehicle sales fell in fiscal 2004 to 1.31 million from 1.5 million the previous year.