Mitsubishi Motors to close SUV plant in Japan by 2023 to cut capacity

TOKYO -- Mitsubishi Motors has started making the final arrangements for the closure of a car plant of subsidiary Pajero Manufacturing within three years, sources familiar with the matter said on Wednesday, Nikkei has learned.

The Pajero Manufacturing plant, which is based in the Gifu Prefecture town of Sakahogi, has produced cars such as the Pajero sports utility vehicle, but its output rate has been mired in the doldrums due to slumping sales.

Mitsubishi Motors will also cease production of Pajero cars, which it has so far continued for export, around 2021. These plans will be included in the automaker's new mid-term management plan to be announced on July 27, the sources said.

In Japan, Toyota Motor has also decided to close a plant of group company Higashi-Fuji in the Shizuoka Prefecture city of Susono at the end of 2020, while Honda Motor will shut its Sayama plant in the Saitama Prefecture city of Sayama by fiscal 2021.

Japanese carmakers are moving to cut back on excessive production capacity as the domestic market for new autos is shrinking.

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