Mitsubishi Motors New Zealand (MMNZ) recorded some huge results in another impressive period of growth for the company. It closed the 2016 financial year (FY) with its biggest March in 27 years, registering 1,056 sales to take the total number of vehicles sold to 9,718 – a year-on-year increase of 18%.
The result increases Mitsubishi’s share of the Car and LCV market to 6.6%, up 0.3% from 2015 FY. In the SUV sector, Mitsubishi recorded the second-highest number of registrations (4,910). Pajero Sport was the leading ute-based SUV (747 registrations) and Outlander PHEV finished top in the new Electric and Plug-in Hybrid sector (164 registrations).
An enduring Kiwi favourite, Outlander saw registrations increase by 42% year-on-year – driven strongly by the new model release in September, which saw a massive year-on-year increase of 123% for Q3 and Q4.
Daniel Cook, general manager of vehicle sales and marketing, said the result was driven by excellent customer service, vehicle appeal and choice, plus exceptional value.
“We’ve built an attractive and dynamic range that closely aligns with Kiwi lifestyles, across a broad spectrum, all delivered at exceptional value,” said Mr Cook. “Backed by New Zealand’s best new vehicle warranty1 and our multi award-winning Customer Care Centre – currently rated the best in the country2 – that’s a compelling package for customers not only to choose us, but to stick with us.”
Mr Cook pointed to frequent model updates and new releases as another key to continued customer satisfaction. In a buoyant SUV and crossover segment, Mitsubishi put itself in a strong position with the release of a seven-seat Pajero Sport, plus a model upgrade earlier this year, and new models in the Outlander and ASX ranges. A revolutionary new Outlander PHEV is already making headlines as 2017 FY gets under way.
“When it comes to delivering new technology, design and style upgrades, we continually aim to surpass customer expectations – while maintaining strong value,” said Mr Cook.
“This year, for no extra cost, we improved on what were already very high safety specifications across the Pajero Sport range to ensure the new model provides even greater value and added peace of mind. Even without those improvements, it’s a worthy winner of Stuff’s title of Best SUV of 2016.
“From technology such as Smartphone Link Display Audio3 to Fast Charge capability on the new Outlander PHEV – we also want to ensure driving a Mitsubishi is an intuitive experience integrated with people’s everyday lives.”
Mr Cook added that he and his colleagues were also particularly proud that the number of visitors to the MMNZ website had surpassed 1 million over the 2016 FY.
“Another story behind higher sales figures and greater market share is an increase in brand appeal and engagement across a broader demographic,” said Mr Cook. “We’ve seen a year-on-year increase of more than 18% in the number of visitors to our website, while the average age of a new Mitsubishi owner has come down.
“By offering style, comfort and safety at unbeatable value, and being leaders in areas such as plug-in hybrid technology, we resonate with more Kiwi motorists than ever before.
“With the launch of our new fast-charge Outlander PHEV coinciding with a surge in the number of charging stations across the country, that is set to continue and we’re extremely excited about what the future holds – for us and our customers.”
1Mitsubishi Diamond Advantage is New Zealand’s best new car warranty: ten-year/160,000km powertrain warranty, five-year/130,000km new vehicle warranty and five-year/130,000km roadside assist.
2MMNZ won the 2016 CRM Supreme Diamond Award for Customer Service (Under 50 seats).
3Introduced to Pajero Sport last year and rolled out in every new model release since, SDA allows drivers to remain in full control of the wheel and their smartphones on a clear, 7-inch, dash-mounted touch screen via Apple CarPlay or Android AutoTM.