Mitsubishi Motors North America will move its U.S. headquarters from California to Tennessee by the end of the year, resulting in the loss of approximately 200 California jobs, Automotive News reported June 25.
Mitsubishi said it expects to begin its move from Cypress, California, to Franklin, Tennessee, in August.
“Mitsubishi said one reason it chose Franklin was the area’s high-tech community, along with cost savings, a business-friendly work environment and proximity to Nissan,” Automotive News wrote, noting that Nissan and Mitsubishi are sister companies.
The automaker has been in Southern California since the mid-1980s, first in Fountain Valley and then in Cypress.
“The move is part of an ongoing plan to reinvent every aspect of Mitsubishi Motors in the U.S., from corporate leadership to dealer partners to every touch-point in a customer’s relationship with their vehicle, and will sharpen the company’s focus on future growth and innovation,” the company said.
The company added that the move “highlights efforts taken across the entire global landscape of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance to bring the companies closer together in key areas including procurement, development and cost efficiencies.”
While most corporate departments (sales and marketing, product planning and dealer operations) will be moved, the parts distribution will remain in California.
“Mitsubishi is working with Nissan to house its parts center in a newly constructed, shared facility in Riverside, California,” Automotive News reported. “About 25 people representing the western region will also stay behind.”
Automotive News added: “Mitsubishi’s decision is yet another loss for Southern California, referred to in 2000 as ‘Motown West’ for the concentration of automotive brands that based their U.S. operations there. Since then, the brands under Ford’s former Premier Automotive Group – Lincoln, Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo – moved back east, Suzuki stopped selling cars in the U.S. and Toyota moved to a huge campus in Plano, Texas. In addition, Nissan moved its North American headquarters from Los Angeles to Nashville in 2006, leaving behind about 60 percent of its 1,300 staffers and executives at the time. … Left in California are Honda, Mazda, Hyundai and Kia. However, fledgling Chinese brands such as GAC, Karma and Zotye have set up shop in the region.”
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