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Future models - Mitsubishi - Mirage

Thai market first to get Mirage

Green side: The conservatively-styled new Mitsubishi Mirage will be in Australia by year's end.

Mitsubishi to debut new Mirage hatch in Thailand – ahead of Japan and Europe

Mitsubishi logo22 Mar 2012

By MIKE COSTELLO

MITSUBISHI Motors Corporation (MMC) has confirmed that Thailand will be the first market in the world to receive the new Mirage light car, where it will go on sale from March 28.

Dubbed a “global compact car”, the Mirage is claimed to fit the needs of both fast-growing emerging markets as an entry-level car and the green-focused advanced, or developed, markets.

Next in line will be fellow members of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN), ahead of more established markets such as Japan, Europe and here in Australia, where it will replace the discontinued Colt.

The decision to launch the new city car in developing markets ahead of more established ones fits with the car-maker’s JUMP three-year business plan, one of the pillars of which is pouring resources into emerging markets.

Thai pricing will kick off from Thai baht 380,000 ($A11,750), rising up to THB 551,000 ($A17,000), with plans afoot to sell 2500 units per month.

21 center imageIn light of the Australia-Thailand free-trade agreement and Mitsubishi’s focus on emerging markets, expect the Mirage to occupy the lower end of the Australian light car segment alongside cars like the Nissan Micra, Holden Barina and Hyundai i20.

The Mirage will be built at a brand new facility at Laem Chabang in Thailand that MMC claims is its largest outside of its home country of Japan.

The Thai-market Mirage will be powered by a 1.2-litre MIVEC engine with claimed fuel efficiency of 4.5 litres per 100km.

The car will also be launched globally with a 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol engine featuring MIVEC variable valve timing and an idle-stop system, as seen in the Global Small concept that previewed it.

Specific outputs are still to be divulged, but the engine will drive the front wheels through a continuously variable transmission (CVT) and has a combined-cycle fuel consumption ‘target’ equivalent to just 3.33L/100km.

The previously confirmed full-electric version is also set to arrive here a little after the local launch of petrol-powered versions, as part of the brand’s goal of developing plug-in or full-EV variants of all its key model lines.

Mitsubishi Australia will also launch the all-new Outlander compact SUV Down under in December this year in what is shaping up to be an exceptionally busy final quarter of 2012 for the company’s local arm.

As we reported earlier this month, the new Outlander will initially be available in Australia in petrol guise only, arriving four months ahead of the plug-in hybrid version set to appear in April 2013. The 110kW/360Nm diesel remains unconfirmed.

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