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Mitsubishi denies stock clearout allegations

Mitsubishi has denied it is facing problems with unsold stock after it made deals with daily rental companies to accelerate clearance.

Jim Tyrrell, managing director of the Colt Car Company, which distributes Mitsubishi Cars in the UK, wrote to dealers in February telling them unsold stock stood at more than 10,000 vehicles at the end of last year and a number of vehicles had been sold to Avis and Hertz franchises.

But some were sold to brokers and have ended up on the open market, prompting Mitsubishi to cease supply through the channels responsible.

A Mitsubishi spokesman said: "The excess stock was mainly older vehicles, including the three-door Shogun Pinin, which went on sale in the UK as the car market effectively went into recession.

"Manufacturers often do deals with rental and contract hire companies for new vehicles to get them on the road and make sure people see them. But so far this year our sales are up 15% following our second price reduction in December, and although our used stock level has fallen to around 7,000 units, most of that is new stock with much of the older stock from last year being sold.

"We think 7,000 units is a more normal level, although ideally we would like it to be 5,000."

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