Skip navigation

Gloucestershire Business News

Colt hit as Mitsubishi pulls out of UK market

Colt Car Company said it "did not, at any point, anticipate" Mitsubishi's withdrawal from the UK and Europe.

The Cirencester-based company has had a long-term relationship with the Japanese manufacturer, acting as importer to the UK market since 1974.

Mitsubishi announced it was freezing the introduction of new models into Europe with immediate effect.

According to a letter sent by Colt to retail partners, the company said it had no choice but to reduce fixed costs by 20 per cent and concentrate on core markets.

The letter said that Colt "did understand that MMC (Mitsubishi Motor Corporation) was facing difficulties and we were anticipating that there may have been some further delays in, and adjustments to, their future product plans."

It continued: "In terms of the future for The Colt Car Group of Companies, we have already been looking at opportunities to bring additional new vehicle brands into the UK as a distributor and have already been in early dialogue with some alternative emerging market brands with an EV product strategy.

"Whilst the discussions are at an early stage, in light of today's announcement we are focused on accelerating these opportunities with the goal of introducing additional brands to our business as quickly as possible.

"Clearly, if we are able to progress some of these initial contacts into a viable business proposition it will represent future options and opportunities for us all."

Mitsubishi suffered a £1.29billion loss in the first quarter of the financial year. From April to June, it saw a 57 per cent drop in sales.

Its existing model line-up will remain in the UK and Europe while they continue to meet emissions regulations and stock levels allow.

The network of 103 dealerships, which is overseen by Colt, is expected to continue offering after sales, parts and servicing.

Colt employs 234 people in Gloucestershire with a turnover of £550million.

The impact of Mitsubishi's withdrawal is likely to be felt beyond the motor industry.

The company has been a long-term sponsor of Gloucester Rugby whose chief executive Lance Bradley headed up its UK operation before his retirement.

Mitsubishi is also the performance partner for the RFU.

Related Articles

Coronavirus LIVE Updates: The latest news from across Gloucestershire on Tuesday, August 11 Image

Coronavirus LIVE Updates: The latest news from across Gloucestershire on Tuesday, August 11

The latest important news and updates from across Gloucestershire as the coronavirus crisis continues.

Versarien remains optimistic after reporting loss Image

Versarien remains optimistic after reporting loss

Versarien chief executive Neill Ricketts expressed "optimism and confidence" despite reporting a £4.7million pre-tax loss.

Debenhams announces 2,500 jobs to go Image

Debenhams announces 2,500 jobs to go

Debenhams is cutting 2,500 jobs from stores and warehouses in a move it says was giving the company "every chance of a viable future".

Kohler Mira put shirt on Cheltenham Town again Image

Kohler Mira put shirt on Cheltenham Town again

Cheltenham Town have agreed a two-year extension for Kohler Mira to remain as the club's shirt sponsors.

Copyright 2020 Moose Partnership Ltd. All rights reserved. Reproduction of any content is strictly forbidden without prior permission.