Mitsubishi tries to reinvent itself with SUV debut on Amazon


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(CNN)Mitsubishi unveiled a fully redesigned version of its Outlander SUV on Amazon Live, the streaming service operated by the online retailer, Tuesday evening. This is the first time a major automaker has unveiled a new vehicle on Amazon's service.

Mitsubishi's emailed invitation to the Outlander debut featured a picture of an oversized Amazon shipping box sitting in a driveway. The automaker did not announce any other plans to work with Amazon to market the Outlander or any of its other models.

As part of a larger effort to revamp its lineup, Mitsubishi introduced a completely new version one of its most popular models in the US. The new Outlander is slightly bigger than before and has new grille, headlight and taillight designs that emphasize the SUV's added width.

With traditional auto shows and other live events canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, automakers have been looking for ways to make a splash when they unveil their latest products. Several automakers, including Ford (F), have introduced cars on Facebook. Honda (HMC) unveiled its redesigned Civic on Twitch, a social media platform for gamers.

Mitsubishi once had a strong brand identity based around performance and a base of enthusiasts, but that was long ago, said Akshay Anand, an auto industry analyst at Kelley Blue Book.

"The Mitsubishi of 2021 is not the Mitsubishi of 1995, when they had a little more behind the brand," Anand said.
 
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