STRESA, Italy- Hyundai Precision and Industry Co., an affiliate of Hyundai Motor Co., will introduce in Europe a rebadged version of the first-generation Mitsubishi Pajero.
The sport-utility, called the Hyundai Galloper, will be sold both by Hyundai and Mitsubishi dealers.
Hyundai Precision has built the old Pajero under license in South Korea since 1991 and controls distribution. In most European countries, distribution will be handled by Mitsubishi importers. A single distributor handles both brands in many countries.
The Galloper debuted in Italy in November. It will be introduced late this year or in early 1998 in Belgium, France and Switzerland. Sales will start in the rest of continental Europe and in Iceland by summer. The sport-utility will not be sold in the UK and Ireland because it is offered only with left-hand drive.
Hyundai Precision plans to sell around 9,000 Gallopers in Europe next year.
The Galloper will be offered in three- and five-door versions, with two different wheelbases. In Italy, the Galloper is sold with standard power steering, air conditioning, immobilizer, stereo, alloy wheels, power windows, central locking, electric mirrors and interior wooden trim. The price range is L39.9 million-L49.4 million ($22,800-$28,300).
The first-generation Pajero was launched by Mitsubishi in 1981 and replaced in 1991. The assembly lines of the vehicle were transferred to Hyundai Precision, which has built Gallopers at its Ulsan plant since September 1991. About 220,000 Gallopers have been built. Installed capacity is 60,000 units a year. Planned 1997 output is 54,000 units.