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Mitsubishi Motors battles skidding margins in vital Southeast Asia

Chinese rivals' low-priced electric vehicles pose a major challenge

 The Mitsubishi Triton pickup truck. (Photo courtesy of Mitsubishi Motors)

TOKYO -- For beleaguered Mitsubishi Motors, Southeast Asia is a singularly important market. But caught between Japanese peers competing for market share and Chinese upstarts offering low-priced electric vehicles, the automaker faces a tough battle for survival.

The automaker has a sizable presence in Southeast Asia, with an approximately 15% market share in the Philippines, 10% in Indonesia and 7% in Thailand. In contrast, Mitsubishi only ekes out a 1.7% share back home in Japan.

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