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Mitsubishi Motors Releases New Grandis

-Next-generation minivan extends product-led growth-

Tokyo, May 14, 2003 - Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) today announced that it will launch the next-generation Grandis, a regular-size 3-row seating minivan, at dealerships throughout Japan on May 17.



The new Grandis represents the company's fourth generation vehicle in a segment pioneered in Japan by Mitsubishi Motors. Back in 1979, MMC was the first company to present a concept for a minivan with 3 rows of seating and an under-the-hood engine to the public at the Tokyo Motor Show. In 1983, MMC followed with the launch of the first Chariot. Now in 2003, exactly 20 years later and based on the development keynote themes of Emotional Design, Smart Performance, and Personal Coordination, the new Grandis builds on this strong tradition and extends it to a level of a New Age Premium.

"While further extending the traditional comfort and utility features of the minivan, the Grandis stands out with its exciting emotional design," said MMC President and CEO Rolf Eckrodt. "This latest product offering to our customers will help drive growth at dealers and add further traction to our sales in Japan."

Although brand new in appearance, the Sporty & Elegant styling keynote embraces an almost tangible warmth while the Japanese Modern design school aesthetic is given expression throughout the body. Grandis follows the Colt to become the second model to fully reflect the new Mitsubishi Motors Design Identity also symbolized by the prominent placement of the three-diamond logo at the front of the car.

Grandis raises the bar in terms of road performance and safety. The new 2.4-liter MIVEC engine [121kW (165PS)] delivers stress-free motive power and gains ULEV certification for the series. The new platform uses a straight frame rail construction for added strength; a 6-bag SRS1 airbag system is included for heightened occupant safety, realizing category-topping crashworthiness.

To accommodate the needs and tastes of the widest possible range of owners, MMC's Customer Free Choice (CFC) system will also be applied to the Grandis. CFC, which was successfully introduced with the Colt last year, allows customers to choose freely from a wide range of options to tailor their car to meet their own personal needs. Developers of the Grandis paid special attention to the specific demands of female customers by directly involving the company's Women Evaluation Team throughout the entire design and development process.

In Japan, MMC is targeting monthly sales of 3,000 units. But it is not just Japanese customers who will gain access to this latest product. "The Grandis will go global. We are planning to launch it in Europe next year and then take it to China and other markets," Eckrodt said.

1. Emotional Design

Exterior woven from flowing lines, moving surfaces
Grandis features the new Mitsubishi Motors Design Identity, defined by the three-diamond logo located centrally in the grill. The flowing body lines and attractive surfaces weave together a liquid and laid-back form; one that seems to flow in an unbroken stream from front to rear, though the roof and side windows, down the character line. The sculpted reflectors visible inside the clear-cut lenses of the 4-bulb headlamp units lend a brilliant crystal touch to the classy front visage.

Extensive use is made of LED lighting: in the turn signals embedded in the exterior mirrors, in the combination rear lamps and in the hi-mount auxiliary stop lamp. With its distinctive properties, the LED lighting clearly identifies Grandis at night. And the use of clear lenses in the LED lamps creates a sense of continuity with the upper body glazing.

Modern living room interior steeped in Japanese aesthetic sensibilities
The dash is designed to a wave-form theme, generating a visual sense of roominess and of relaxing comfort. The in-dash shift gate decorative panel features a metallic finish on the Sports interior and wood-grain finish on the Elegance interior scheme respectively with form, color and luster working synergistically to project the inherent properties of these materials.

The Sports version uses metallic finish panels, orange instrument lighting and light-reflecting dotted gray seat fabric to add zest to the interior. The Elegance version uses wood-grain panels, blue instrument lighting, and seat fabric with a modern furniture motif to overlay the interior with a relaxed and classy atmosphere.

Coloring borrows from Japanese aesthetic of transition
Grandis models are offered in a range of 10 body colors (three new for Grandis) for which the Japanese natural landscape and four distinct seasons provided the development launch pad.

Purchasers are offered a choice of four interior color schemes: combinations of two dash top colors - Maroon or Dark Violet - and two dash bottom and seat fabric colors - Gray or Beige.

2. Smart Performance

High-efficiency packaging gives easy-park maneuverability
The new Grandis is 100mm longer both overall and inside than its predecessor, allowing occupants to enjoy more leg room and foot space. It also matches the easy-to-park 5.5m turning radius of its predecessor (16-inch wheel models) despite its extended length and roomier interior.

New platform, 6-bag SRS airbag system improve crashworthiness, road performance
Grandis rides on a new platform that realizes a significant improvement in crash energy absorption efficiencies. Major structural features include straight frame rails that take the initial force of impact together with octagonal-section front side chassis members, 3-directional input/dispersion dash cross member and pillar braces that offer high crash energy absorption and dispersal performance.

The front wheels are suspended by a newly evolved MacPherson strut design, and the rear wheels by a semi-trailing arm arrangement that optimizes interior space efficiency. Suspension tuning has been optimized to deliver precise steering and taut handling together with a flat but forgiving ride for all occupants.

Grandis is available with side and curtain airbags that offer front and 2nd row occupants additional protection from injury to arms and chest and to the head in a side impact. The curtain airbag extends from the front to beyond the second row of seats.

New MIVEC engine delivers outstanding power, fuel economy with clean emissions
Grandis models are powered by the new 2.4-liter MIVEC2 engine [maxima of 121 kW (165PS) and 217N-m (22.1kg-m)] mated to Mitsubishi's INVECS-II with Sport Mode 4-speed automatic transmission3. This advanced powertrain realizes very responsive and sporty dynamic performance.

2WD models return top class mileage of 11.4 km/l in the Japanese 10-15 pattern fuel economy test.

The Grandis series has gained ULEV certification by achieving emission levels that are 75% lower than required by Japanese 2001 Emission Regulations. This results from the use of Mitsubishi's own dual manifold catalytic converters (MCC) which boast very powerful scrubbing performance. ULEV certification and compliance with Japanese 2010 fuel efficiency requirements means that all models in the Grandis series qualify for the Vehicle Green Tax exemption.

Multi-Select 4WD delivers optimal traction and all-surface performance
Exploiting all the benefits of electronic control, the new Multi-Select 4WD features three operating modes: 2WD Mode, 4WD Mode and LOCK Mode. 2WD Mode returns the best fuel economy on good surfaces; 4WD Mode automatically tailors traction and handling characteristics to different weather conditions and road surfaces; and LOCK Mode maximizes traction for low-friction surfaces or when the vehicle gets bogged down and other emergency situations.

Utility for every occasion
The front passenger Useful Seat features a large capacity locker under the seat squab for small-item stowage. The squab can be locked in the raised position, with retaining hooks providing a convenient means of securing shopping bags or a briefcase.

Second row seats employ a Relax Mode feature that enables the occupant to select between three squab rake angles. With the adjustable seatback recline, this enables the occupant to configure the seat for maximum comfort and relaxation.

In a world first, Grandis' third row seats can be individually stowed away under the floor in a simple and effortless operation. This feature brings greater flexibility in tailoring the interior to accommodate various passenger/luggage requirements.

Other utility and convenience features include: side tables with cup holders for the front seats; Personal Table with vibration damping fitted to front seat backs for 2nd row occupants; while seats in all three rows are fitted with drink container and cup holders.

Equipment specification enhances living environment
Grandis uses, for the first time in a motor vehicle in Japan, a new head lining material that absorbs cigarette smoke, everyday smells, formaldehyde and other chemical odors and breaks them down into water and CO2.

All models in the Grandis lineup are fitted as standard with solar-control glazing that protects occupants from ultra-violet and infra-red radiation even on days of intense sunlight.

On-board entertainment, safety-enhancing electronic controls
Grandis models are available with the latest version of MMCS4 , which features user-friendly touch-panel operation, or, as a dealer-option, with MDS5, which enables the installation of other navigation systems on the market.

Available for the rear compartment is an overhead flip-open slim-panel monitor that enables rear passengers to follow the car navigation display or watch TV. For enhanced occupant entertainment and fun, the monitor also supports video game, DVD player and other external devices.

The Dual-Around Monitor safety-support system comprises: (1) A rear-view camera (with auxiliary marker post) and corner sensors that supplement the driver's rear field of view when parking or reversing; (2) A nose-view camera, new for Grandis, that supplements the driver's lateral field of view at intersections and other places where his vision may be restricted.

All models in the Grandis series are fitted, as standard, with an advanced security system and engine immobilizer that protects the vehicle from being broken into or stolen.

3. Personal Coordination

Customer Free Choice
Exterior and interior colors, seating, equipment specification: CFC offers the owner the ability to pick and chose as he tailors his Grandis to his own lifestyle. Four maker-recommended theme packages are available: Elegance, Elegance-X, Sports and Sports-X. The Standard package gives the owner the freest hand in tailoring trim and equipment exactly to his own needs and preferences. Also on offer is a wide range of attractive dealer-fitted accessory and trim options that, with CFC, enable the owner to tailor his vehicle more closely to his tastes.

Customized / Hearty Run Welfare models
Three ROAR customized models add an extra sporty zest to the Grandis lineup; ROAR Custom Complete, ROAR for Sport and ROAR for Elegance

The Hearty Run welfare model brings easy-to-use motoring pleasure and convenience to mobility-challenged passengers with its slide-out-and-down front passenger seat. In a computer-controlled and simple operation, the seat first swivels through 98-degrees towards the door opening and then slides outwards and down to a final squab height of 460mm.

1 Supplemental Restraint System
2 Mitsubishi Innovative Valve timing and lift Electronic Control
3 SportronicTM sequential-shift 4-speed transmission in the U.S.
4 Mitsubishi Multi-Communications System
5 Multi-Display Station

Manufacturer's recommended prices (nationwide)

Recommended package
(6- and 7-seater models)
Sport Mode 4-speed AT
2,083,000 yen
2,278,000 yen
2,723,000 yen
2,333,000 yen
2,683,000 yen
2,323,000 yen
2,518,000 yen
2,963,000 yen
2,573,000 yen
2,923,000 yen

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