Following an official announcement on Wednesday, Mitsubishi announced that it has decided to pull the plug on its legendary SUV, Pajero.
The illustrious off-roader will cease sales in Japan with no successor in sight, ending a 37-year run. The SUV stood as Mitsubishi’s flagship offering combining the comforts of a passenger car with true off-roading capabilities. Since its inception, the Pajero has maintained its body-on-frame construction even as car-based crossovers infiltrated the market.
The Pajero is still popular in southeast Asia and Latin America, but how long that will last is unknown.
One of the reasons why the Pajero was catapulted to legend status in Japan and throughout much of Asia was its dominance in the Paris Dakar Rally back in the day. Clenching 12 victories in one of the world’s toughest off-road competitions, the Pajero made an undying marque for Mitsubishi in the race’s history.
Since 1982, Mitsubishi has produced over 3 million Pajeros with over 640,000 sold in Japan. However, in recent times, domestic sales diminished to just a few hundred years. Its fourth generation has been on the market since 2006, the same year when Mitsubishi halted US sales of the Montero.
Since 1982, Mitsubishi has produced over 3 million Pajeros with over 640,000 sold in Japan.
As a token of farewell, Mitsubishi announced a final edition model that will feature the most popular options including roof rails and leather upholstery in a single trim alongside special badging to denote it’s the last of its kind. Only 700 models of the final edition Pajeros will be made which will be offered with a commemorative decal set and a serial numbered wristwatch made by Citizen.
The company will continue to produce the fourth-gen Pajero in its Gifu Prefecture factory for export. The Pajero is still popular in southeast Asia and Latin America, but how long that will last is unknown. With no development planned for the next generation and already 13 years on the vine for the current one, it’s likely living on borrowed time.