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Mitsubishi shuts down Ralliart

Rallying on: Lancer Evo won't be affected by Ralliart's demise.

Ralliart to scale down, but Mitsubishi’s performance cars are not affected

Mitsubishi logo12 Mar 2010

By MARTON PETTENDY

MITSUBISHI has announced the “scale down” of its Ralliart motorsport and aftermarket division from the end of this month, but says current and future performance models like the Lancer Ralliart and Evolution will not be affected.

The partial cease of Ralliart’s business activities, which were established in April 1984, was advised by Ralliart president Masao Taguchi in a letter to customers this week.

However, it effectively amounts to a restructure of the Ralliart brand’s business model and supply chain, with parent company Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) set to handle Ralliart's parts and merchandise arrangements directly.

 center imageLeft: Lancer Ralliart Sportback.

Mitsubishi already develops the Lancer Ralliart and Evolution models itself, so neither of the Japanese maker’s performance models will be affected in Australia or globally. Mitsubishi Motors Australia Limited (MMAL) said it will be “business as usual” for Ralliart locally.

Ralliart’s business activities were substantially reduced when Mitsubishi stopped its support of both the World Rally Championship and other off-road racing categories, but the Ralliart chief’s letter suggested the company’s diminishing aftermarket business was the primary factor in the Mitsubishi subsidiary’s demise.

“...Because of the sudden change of economy situation since the year before last, the business circumstance surrounding our company radically became worse and so this time we have reached the conclusion that we, Ralliart Inc, would scale down our business activities as of the end of March 2010,” said Mr Taguchi.

“We would like to express our sincere apology to all of our customers...”

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