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Mitsubishi North America to get a new president/CEO

Mitsubishi Motors Corporation has announced that effective April 1, 2011, current President and CEO of Mitsubishi Motors North America Shinichi Kurihara will be replaced by Yoichi Yokozawa, who is currently serving as the Senior Executive Vice President of Mitsubishi North America.

Yoichi Yokozawa has served since the Senior Executive Vice President of Mitsubishi North America since June 2010, having come across the pond where he oversaw Mitsubishi Motors Corporation’s North American Free Trade Agreement market operations. Yokozawa’s 13 year career with Mitsubishi Motors began in 1998 with Mitsubishi Motors Europe, where he moved through the company working in a variety of areas including merger and acquisition and corporate strategy. As he takes over the lead role in North American Mr. Yokozawa will have quite a tough task if the recent rumors of a total brand remake prove to be true.

We have recently heard that Mitsubishi will be killing off the Eclipse and Galant – two vehicles that have been the most popular of the brand in the US market. On top of those rumors is the news that Mitsubishi plans to kill off the high performance Lancer Evolution after the current version to pursue an entire lineup focused on nothing but high efficiency models based around a set of global platforms, like the MiEV displayed above. This has sent the faithful Mitsubishi performance community into a frenzy as they plead with the company to not do away with the high performance models but with Mitsubishi is severely poor shape in the US, something must be done for the Japanese automaker to survive in this market – and around the world.

Current President and CEO of Mitsubishi Motors North America, Shinichi Kurihara, will leave his post on April 1st after 2 years of service at that position, as he heads back to Mitsubishi Motors Corporation’s base of operations in Japan. The announcement of the upcoming management change failed to mention what Kurihara’s new position would be but with another big change from the company, things are looking bleak for those Mitsubishi fans who are more worried about high performance than high efficiency.

Other Mitsubishi News:
Mitsubishi addresses Lancer Evolution rumors on Facebook
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X To Be Final Evo
Mitsubishi to build Outlander Sport in Illinois
Geneva Motor Show: Mitsubishi Unveils Global Small Concept
Mitsubishi Unveils MiEV for North America