Mitsubishi Dealer Turns Totaled Outlander Sport Into Good Mojo
Apparent Safety Drives Customers Into Showrooms
A Minnesota Mitsubishi dealer is turning a wrecked Outlander Sport into a public service announcement and advertisement to the benefit of its bottom line, according to Automotive News.
In 2013, Sarah Dittrich suffered a hellish head-on collision with a semi at 65 mph while driving on the interstate in her Outlander Sport. She walked away from the accident with a bloody nose and nothing more. Shortly thereafter, she and the totaled vehicle appeared in an advertisement for White Bear Mitsubishi, crediting the crossover for her survival.
The ad went so well that the wrecked Outlander Sport has become a static display of the vehicle’s inherent safety, with the words “65 MPH vs Semi Truck” printed on the doors. The marketing tool seems to be turning into excellent sales for the dealer, which sells more Outlander Sports than anywhere else in the world, according to the general manager of White Bear Mitsubishi, Richard Herod III.
In fact, in the dealership’s market, which includes White Bear Lake and St. Paul, Minnesota, the Outlander Sport comprised 23 percent of new compact crossover registration, outselling the Mazda CX-5 and Kia Sportage in those areas. That’s amazing considering the Outlander Sport usually shows up dead last in nationwide compact CUV sales, even though it is Mitsubishi's best-selling vehicle.
It’s a bit of good news for the automaker, which has historically languished near the bottom of U.S. sales charts. Mitsubishi has long been rumored to be the next Japanese car company to exit the American market, following Isuzu and Suzuki.
Perhaps the automaker should follow the dealership’s lead by touting their vehicles’ excellent safety ratings. The Insurance Institute named the Outlander Sport a Top Safety Pick for Highway Safety, following its acceptable performance in the small overlap crash test and good performance in all other crash tests.