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Mitsubishi Motors has announced they will close their only U.S. factory and will move production back to Japan as the automaker shifts its focus to exporting. Meg Teckman reports.
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RESENDING TO CORRECT THE MODEL OF VEHICLE MADE IN THE ILLINOIS PLANT FROM "OUTLANDER" TO "OUTLANDER SPORT" IN SOUNDBITE
President of Mitsubishi Motors on Monday (Jul 27) announcing the closing of their only U.S. manufacturing plant.
(SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) PRESIDENT, MITSUBISHI MOTORS, TETSURO AIKAWA, SAYING:
"We have reached this conclusion because it has become clear that we do not have the scale of production nor is it economically logical for us to maintain a U.S. base.
"We will be terminating the production of Outlander (Sport) created at our Bloomington plant, and consolidate production at our Okazaki plant. We will transform our business model so as to export to global markets from Japan."
In its peak in the early 2000s, the Outlander Sport plant in Illinois built over 200,000 cars a year, but last year only produced under 70,000.
Mitsubishi is one of Japan's smallest auto manufacturers and has faced a decline in its U.S. market in recent years.