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Mitsubishi to Enter South Korean Auto Market

U.S. automakers could enter market soon if free-trade pact is approved.

Japan's Mitsubishi Motors said July 3 it will start selling vehicles in South Korea in late September to try to tap the growing market for imported cars.

Mitsubishi will sell its Outlander sport utility vehicle, Eclipse sports car, Lancer Evolution sedan and two other models, said Choi Jong-Yeol, chief executive of Mitsubishi Motors Sales Korea.

Sales of all imported cars jumped 31.7% from a year earlier to a record 53,390 in 2007, according to the Korea Automobile Importers and Distributors Association.

Last year foreign cars took up 5.13% of the domestic market compared with 4.15% in 2006.
The association predicts foreign car sales will reach 62,000 this year.

South Korea has also pledged to open up its auto market under a free-trade pact with the United States, which is awaiting legislative ratification.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008

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