When you're so screwed financially that you get shot down by your parent company for a financial bail out and have to go and offer an incredible warranty to sell cars its hard to have small race teams.
Mitsu sales were good when they were kicking ass and taking names in WRC, they are back in that game to try to boost global sales because it was working before.
I'll be amazed if Mitsu manages to turn around financiall in the next 5 years....
- Mitsu Car Co may be near broke (although they just got plenty of $$$ from other sources when going-for-broke Daimler-Mopar fiasco couldn't help....) but "Mitsu WRC Rally Team" is more than OK. They have tested more than Ford and Sube together this year. Sube WRT is broke if anyone... No new parts, no testing, no budjet to do anything this year except trying to survive.
- Mitsu US went out of rally business thanks to poor management (remember those irritable "music" ads?) and trying to build an 400-HP killer car when a good GrN had been enough.
Mitsubishi future called into question
19 Jul, 02:26
The French press has cast doubt on Mitsubishi?s continued participation in the 2004 World Rally Championship.
The rumours, published in the newspaper L?Equipe, suggest that the Japanese team may withdraw following the Deutschland Rally at the end of August - a fortnight before the first ever World Championship rally in Japan.
Mitsubishi Motor Sports? results have not been good since the launch of the Lancer WRC04. Moreover, the company?s image in Japan has been severely damaged by revelations about accidents involving its lorries in the 1990s. Taking part in a rally at home might be deemed inappropriate under the circumstances, despite its long and successful tradition in the sport.
They have tested more than Ford and
>Sube together this year.
Because they have to, the cars are not up to snuff
Sube WRT is broke if anyone... No
>new parts, no testing, no budjet to do anything this year
>except trying to survive.
??? They brought out new cars for Mexico
> >- Mitsu US went out of rally business thanks to poor
>management (remember those irritable "music" ads?) and
>trying to build an 400-HP killer car when a good GrN had
To be clear, it was not poor management of the rally team though. A new CEO was brought in to clean up Mitsubishi USA, and he started with the uneccessary expenditures.
As I heard it, those ads were pretty successful (at least in the beginning)
Weren't those US cars essentially Group N cars with more power and bigger brakes?
Mitsu pulled out because the new CEO was anti-motorsports, and vehemontly anti-rally. Same guy who axed Hyundai's program. It was last minute, and it royally screwed the drivers (Diggins had already turned down other rides) and Vermont SportsCar.
The official line is financial troubles, but if you ask me it all stems from marketing. The only successful car they have is the Evo, and besides the Fast and the Furious the only successful thing they've done with it is rally it. They spent like $2+ million dollars on the championship, creamed everybody, but then didn't bother to air one friggin commercial touting their victories????? The problem wasn't the rally program, but when times get tough it's an easy scapegoat to blame.
Latest rumor is that Mitsu will pull out of the US altogether, where their market share is less than 1%.