Mitsubishi may soon be securing its affiliation with Nissan even more with a new strategy that’ll see it using its ally’s platforms for a series of new models. This adjustment is expected to take place closer to 2026.
According to Nikkei Asia, Mitsubishi aims to shift the research and development investment costs into electric vehicles and other technologies. The business publication says that this is an indicator of how manufacturers are struggling to maintain independent vehicle development due to the ever-increasing costs.
With this move, Mitsubishi would be the first Japanese manufacturer to terminate the development of platforms that is used for passenger cars that are sold in Japan. What it will maintain is development of interiors, exteriors and drive devices.
As of March this year, Mitsubishi offers eight different platforms. The brand is looking to half this by 2026 and expects to develop only two by itself for the Southeast Asian market. The other two would be co-developed with Nissan.
These two Japanese manufacturers are in an existing alliance with Renault with whom 40 per cent of their platforms are being shared. Now, Mitsubishi and Nissan are looking to refocus their relationship and start working more closely with one another.
Over the past two fiscal years, Mitsubishi Motors has suffered losses and has thus made the decision to discontinue unprofitable models such as the Lancer and Pajero.
The company currently has a research and development budget of 99 billion yen (approximately R12 billion) for the fiscal year ending March 2022. This is 30 per cent less than its record-high amount for fiscal 2019. The budget is expected to stay around 100 billion yen (approximately R13 billion).
Other carmakers have also cut down on costly platform investment such as Subaru who has combined two types of platforms into one since 2016.