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Mitsubishi pickup trucks used to dot American roads along with the little Toyotas and Datsuns. The small Japanese pickup trucks were a staple for a long time. Since the early ’90s, These little trucks began to grow larger or disappear from the American market altogether. It seems that Mitsubishi wants to sell pickup trucks in the U.S. again. 

Mitsubishi Triton rally truck
Mitsubishi Triton rally truck | Mitsubishi

Are Mitsubishi pickup trucks sold in the U.S.?

Mitsubishi hasn’t been a terribly popular marque with Americans for some time. However, according to The Drive, the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV has gained the brand some cred with American buyers. Even still, the Director for Product Planning in North America, Cason Grover, is hungry for more. He is interested in bringing Mitsubishi pickup trucks back to the U.S. 

“It’s another one of those things we want to try to figure out,” Grover said of the U.S. pickup market at the Outlander PHEV’s launch. “We’d love to be able to do it.”

“It’s an area we’re certainly interested in because we have a lot of global success. We have history in the U.S. as well,” Grover added.

Does this mean the Mitsubishi Triton could come back? 

The Mitsubishi Triton might not have been on the same level as the F-150, but the small pickup truck, known here as the Mitsubishi Mighty Max, was a proper classic. Although we lost the Triton sometime ago, abroad, the Triton is still building its legacy. This is likely the truck model Grover has in mind for us. However, the aging yet still cool Triton is blocked from our shores thanks to the Chicken Tax. 

“At the end of the day, we don’t have U.S. manufacturing right now, and fundamentally the Chicken Tax is [an obstacle to importing pickup trucks],” Grover said. “You can’t just wedge that [global Triton] into somebody else’s plant over [here].”

“So anything we would do—and this is just hypothetical—we’d likely have to go to an alliance partner that does build [one].” 

Nissan could be the key to getting Mitsubishi trucks

As noted by The Drive, Grover mentioned reforging the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance. While this might not seem overly helpful initially because we also don’t get Renault, Nissan could be the key. Thankfully for any Mitsubishi Triton hopefuls, Nissan makes the Frontier in Mississippi. Maybe this could be the path to bringing a Mitsubishi pickup truck back stateside, assuming Nissan has room on the line for another truck. 

Small pickup trucks are hot

midsize truck
2022 Ford Maverick Lariat | Ford

The Ford Maverick has proven the people’s desire for a small, cheap pickup truck. This truck is part of why Grover wants to get another small, cheap pickup truck on the market. 

“The [Ford] Ranger, the old Ranger that was much smaller, had so much volume and was around so long,” Grover said. “The Maverick really almost [does] what the Ranger used to do, being affordable.”

Multiple avenues make bringing a small Mitsubishi pickup truck back stateside. Also, the market is begging for more units like the Maverick. Who knows, maybe Mitsubishi is just the brand to do it.