Mitsubishi Motors was spawned out of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in 1970. Since then, it has become one of the largest automakers in Japan, and it’s known for the development of innovative technology over the years.
Yet, Mitsubishi’s car-making history dates as far back as 1917 when Mitsubishi Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. brought out the Mitsubishi Model A.
Now, these facts are relatively easy to find with a few clicks through a search engine.
But, here are seven little-known facts about Mitsubishi that you might find surprising.
Hint: Jackie Chan is involved!
In 1992, a Mitsubishi electric car became the first to travel 2,000 kilometers in under 24 hours.
The i-MiEV, the brand’s most well-known electric vehicle, was released a year ahead of schedule in 2010. That year, it earned Japan’s “Most Advanced Technology” award.
It proceeded to become the world’s first electric car to sell more than 10,000 units, earning a place in the Guinness Book of World Records.
The i-MiEV was designated the greenest car on the market by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) in 2012. Both automobile specialists and customers have lauded its ease of use in urban environments.
In 2011, Mitsubishi broke five Guinness World Records in 24 hours. They racked up a string of unrivaled milestones in one day while filming the launch of their Outlander and Outlander Sport in rural Canada.
The world records they clocked up included:
- The greatest distance driven by a vehicle in reverse on snow in 30 seconds – which was 300 meters
- The shortest braking distance by a vehicle on ice at 56.2 meters
- They achieved the most vehicle figure eights on ice in two minutes at a total of 3 laps
- The fastest vehicle slalom relay on ice in one minute, 11 seconds
- The fastest driven square lap in just 19 seconds
Some of these world records may seem a little ridiculous. But they do show how well the Outlander can perform in extreme conditions.
But if you’re into your Mitsubishi pickups, you have to check out the new Mitsubishi Triton!
OK, so here comes the Jackie part.
If you’ve watched any Jackie Chan movies, you might not have noticed that he’s always driving a Mitsubishi. That’s because he has a longstanding partnership with the carmaker.
The Lancer Evo model is one of the most notable cars he drives in his movies. You can see him (or his stunt driver) performing crazy stunts in a Mitsubishi in the movies Who Am I and Thunderbolt, for example.
Furthermore, because Mr. Chan has been such a strong ambassador for the carmaker, they’ve rewarded him with his very own special edition models over the years!
We must also give a shout-out to the Fast and Furious Movies. They’ve really done wonders for the reputation of Mitsubishi by featuring super-modified and tuned-up Lancers and Eclipses on the big screen.
Mitsubishi, when translated into English, means “three water chestnuts.” So it explains why the logo has three geometric shapes, representing the chestnuts.
This makes a stark difference to other car brands, which are typically named after people. Also, the logos from other car brands tend to have carefully designed logos by master designers.
Mitsubishi, on the other hand, kept their name and design simple, clean, and elegant. And it’s still one of the most recognizable logos in the world.
Mitsubishi is world-renowned for its rally cars. But did you know that they’ve won the famous Dakar Rally 12 times, and all with the same vehicle?
The Mitsubishi Pajero is Evolution has won more Dakar races than any other car. In addition, it’s won more second and third places than another car in the event too!
It debuted in 1983 as a rally car and was available to buy as a production road car. Finally, the vehicle will be discontinued in the first half of 2021 – even after many attempts by fans of the car to keep it going.
One of the most sought-after Mitsubishi models out there has to be the Tommi Makinen Edition. Of course, Mitsubishi referenced this car to the incredible Finish rally driver it’s named after.
Tommi actually doesn’t even own one of these cars, which already shows that they might be tough to get hold of.
Yet fundamentally, these cars are an extremely limited and upgraded version of the Mitsubishi Lancer. A powerful turbo upgrade and white rims are some of the characteristic traits of this scarce vehicle.
Mitsubishi was the first car maker to introduce a gasoline direct injection system (GDI) to production cars in 1996.
This type of system successfully increases the energy efficiency of cars and reduces exhaust emissions. It also can increase specific power output.
Since Mitsubishi introduced this system onto the market, nearly all other mass-production car makers adopted a similar system into car making.
Interestingly, in 2014, it was made compulsory for all cars to use GDI engines.
Why Own a Mitsubishi?
Mitsubishi has an illustrious history of innovation, and they’ve built so many unique high-performance cars.
Their niche with performance cars has always leaned towards the off-road and rally side of the spectrum. But if you’ve seen the Fast and Furious movies, you’ll know they capable of a lot more. As well their slick and bold designs have appealed to so many car owners over the years.
Thanks for stopping by. We hope you found these facts interesting, and you might even be thinking I want one of those cars? If so, we recommend checking out the new Triton they have released.
Lastly, please check out our blog for further interesting reads on all things automotive.