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Mitsubishi’s 380 to go under the knife

360 for 380: Series III update will comprise mostly cosmetic changes.

Mitsubishi's 380 is set for a Series III update in an effort to keep sales bubbling

15 Feb 2007

MITSUBISHI’s 380 will undergo a mid-year facelift to help bolster sales.

Mitsubishi Motors Australia spokeswoman Lenore Fletcher said the 380 Series III would receive modest cosmetic revisions.

Some grade levels will also be "streamlined" for the 2007 year, she said.

It will be the second upgrade the 380 has received in its 14-month life.

However, Ms Fletcher said there would be no further price cuts, with the price remaining at $27,990 for the base ES model - a price determined in April last year in an effort to drive sales.

When the 380 was launched in 2005 the entry price was $34,490.

In an effort to drive sales, Mitsubishi recently offered a limited number of "platinum" edition 380s for $30,990, with more than $4000 worth of kit added.

Mitsubishi sold 1041 examples of the 380 sedan last month in what was a record overall sales month. January’s 380 result was, however, 44.8 per cent better than January 2006.

In the past Mitsubishi has offered price cuts and partial refunds in an effort to lift flagging sales.

The Adelaide-based car-maker sold only 12,423 380s last year, amounting to around 1000 a month, after confidently predicting sales of 2500 a month when the car was launched in December 2005.

However, the 380 remains the only weak link in the Mitsubishi Motors Australia armour as its other imported vehicles are performing strongly.

21 center imageLeft: Current 380 LX interior.

The recently launched Outlander and Pajero are garnering strong interest with 530 Outlanders sold last month and 368 Pajeros finding buyers. The Triton 4x4 also found 480 buyers last month.

The new Lancer, which is due here later this year, is also expected to lift Mitsubishi’s fortunes. The current model Lancer remains a strong seller, with 1527 sold last month.

January’s total sales of 4554 represented a rise of 28.2 per cent over the same period last year.

According to MMAL’s president and CEO, Robert McEniry, the January sales result was consistent with the company's targets.

"During the month we achieved significant increases right across our locally made, CBU and LCV ranges and consolidated our market share at 5.9 per cent," he said.

"This is an excellent result for us and one we aim to continue." Mr McEniry said Mitsubishi’s product line-up was very strong "and set to become even stronger".

"Over the course of 2007 we will be releasing some additions to our range designed to attract more people to the Mitsubishi brand.

"These new products include an all-new Lancer, the Series III 380 sedan and 4x2 and diesel automatic variants in the Triton line-up."

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