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Ian Beavis Cites Personal Reasons

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DETROIT ( -- Mitsubishi Motors North America said Ian Beavis, senior vice president for marketing, product development and public relations, resigned today for personal reasons.
Earlier this month, Mitshubishi cut its U.S. sales projections by 29%.

Mr. Beavis, an auto industry veteran with both client and agency experience, joined the troubled automaker a year ago as part of a new management team at its Cypress, Calif., headquarters.

Plummeting sales
The automaker reported earlier this month its North American sales through October plummeted nearly 36% to 142,157 units vs. a year ago.

Mr. Beavis' departure wasn't expected and came less than 24 hours after Mitsubishi announced it hired Bob Martin to the new post of director for brand marketing, effective Nov. 29, from Hyundai Motor America. Mitsubishi's CEO and Co-chairman, Finbarr O'Neill, headed Hyundai before joining Mitsubishi in September 2003.

Mr. Beavis told he hired Mr. Martin and declined further comment. Mitsubishi said it will replace Mr. Beavis.

Projections cut
About a month ago, Mitsubishi began to offer for the first time a certified-used-vehicle program to help boost resale values that were hurt by five years of virtual consumer giveaways. Earlier this month, Mitsubishi dramatically cut its projections by 29% for North American vehicle sales in the fiscal year ending next March 31 to 185,000 units from 264,408 in the previous fiscal year, according to Automotive News.

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