December 8, 1981 – Mitsubishi comes to North America

In 1971 Chrysler Corporation purchased 15 percent of Mitsubishi, leading them to begin selling the Mitsubishi Galant as the Dodge Colt in order to compete in the small car market. However, by the end of the 1970s Chrysler Corp was suffering financially and Mitsubishi was not to pleased with sales performance. In 1980 Chrysler sold its Australian manufacturing division to Mitsubishi in order to avoid bankruptcy and in 1981 Mitsubishi founded Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc to sell cars with their own name on them in the US. The first Mitsubishi badged vehicles came to the US on this day in 1981. For the 1982 model year 30,000 vehicles were sent to the US and initially included the Tredia, Cordia and Starion models, followed by the Mighty Max pickup truck. The vehicles were sold through 70 dealers in 22 states. Pics:1973 Mitsubishi Galant – Which was sold as the Dodge Colt in the US following the new partnership – Public DomainMitsubishi Starion – Public domain