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Is the Mitsubishi Triton pickup truck coming to U.S.?

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Mitsubishi is getting ready to do a global reveal of the all-new Triton pickup truck (also known as the L200) in Thailand on July 26. And, since we’ve dubbed 2023 “The Year of the Midsize Truck,” we have to ask: Is it possible the Mitsubishi Triton could come to the States?

In order to answer this question, we need to back up a few steps and point out that Mitsubishi did sell a midsize truck in the U.S. up until 2009. It was called the Raider, and it was based on the Dodge Dakota and built through a partnership with the Chrysler Corporation.

Poor sales and declining interest in a smaller truck in the U.S. forced it from our shores, but Mitsubishi trucks continue to be sold in Asia and Australia.

Mitsubishi midsize truck interest?

As The Drive pointed out in a February 2023 article, Mitsubishi could be interested in re-entering the U.S. pickup truck market. The article quotes Carson Grover, the director for product planning in North America, saying: “It’s an area we’re certainly interested in because we have a lot of global success.”

The Mitsubishi Triton Ralliart race truck even won the 2022 Asia Cross Country Rally.

With interest growing in smaller trucks and a complete revamp of the midsize truck segment happening this year, the timing could be right for a new Mitsubishi offering.

But there’s one small problem.

Why the Mitsubishi Triton can’t currently come to the U.S.

The current Mitsubishi Triton trucks are built in Thailand and Brazil – which means importing it to the U.S. would subject it to the “Chicken Tax,” imposing a 25% tariff on this foreign-built pickup truck. That would price it out of the market.

However, the Triton in the Middle East is a rebadged Ram 1200. And the upcoming 1200 and Ram Rampage will share the same platform. And since it appears the new Ram Rampage could be coming to the U.S. via a Mexico build, well, we’re connecting some dots.

Another possibility: The Nissan Frontier is built in Mississippi, and through its connection with the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, there is the potential to bring the Triton – or another truck to the U.S. that way.

Check one: Yes/No

With the imminent reveal of the global Mitsubishi Triton, we reached out to Mitsubishi to follow up and got the following statement from Jeremy Barnes, senior director for communications at Mitsubishi Motors North America:

“We are always watching market trends, but [we have] no plans at this time to bring this vehicle to the U.S.”

Whomp, whomp.

But we’re still taking this as a not no.

The bottom line

It currently isn’t cost effective for Mitsubishi to bring a truck to the U.S. But with the rising interest in the compact and midsize truck market and the success of the Triton globally, the automaker would be crazy not to think about it.

So, stay tuned. We’ll be following the Mitsubishi Triton reveal and any path forward the truck.

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Jill Ciminillo

Jill Ciminillo is the Managing Editor for Pickup Truck + SUV Talk as well as a Chicago-based automotive writer, YouTube personality and podcast host, with her articles and videos appearing in outlets throughout the U.S. Additionally, she co-hosts a weekly radio show on car stuff for a local Chicago station. Previously, Jill has been the automotive editor for both newspaper and broadcast media conglomerates. She is also a past president for the Midwest Automotive Media Association and has the distinction of being the first female president for that organization. Jill is also currently a juror for the North American Car, Utility and Truck of the Year (NACTOY).

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