Almost exactly two years ago, research firm IHS Automotive published a report on the average age of the buyers of car brands sold in the U.S. Of the 5 cars favored by young Americans, one brand will not exist next year, and another is retreating from the U.S. market.
The cars driven mostly include in the non-luxury segment were Dodge (48.6 year olds), a division of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (NYSE: FCAU), the Scion (49.1) brand owned by Toyota Motor Corp. (NYSE: TM), Mazda (49.1), Mitsubishi (49.1), and Jeep (49.6). The Scion brand, Mazda, and Mitsubishi sell very few cars.
The Scion will disappear. According to Automotive News:
Toyota is pulling the plug on Scion, the funky upstart brand it launched in 2002 to appeal to the finicky younger buyers it was struggling to connect with on its own.
The reason, according to Toyota: It’s no longer struggling to connect with those buyers.
The end will come quickly — and just months after the launch of two vehicles that were seen as critical to reviving the brand. Scion will be discontinued in August, the automaker said today, and its model lineup will be folded into the Toyota brand starting with the 2017 model year.
As for Mitsubishi, it has closed its last manufacturing operation in the U.S. According to a Reuters article on January of this year:
Mitsubishi Motors said on Thursday it would close its sole production plant in the United States as the Japanese automaker cuts losses on dwindling sales in North America and a strong U.S. dollar, which has stymied returns.
While Scion results are rolled into those of parent Toyota, the results for the other brands show up in monthly car sales reports. In the first four months of the year, Mazda sold only 90,838 vehicles. Mitsubishi sold 34,866 over the same period.
Among the cars young drivers like, some won’t be around to drive.