Founder & Zookeeper
- Nov 12, 2001
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The term "DSM" has multiple meanings if you type it into Google. In the auto enthusiast world, the acronym stands for Diamond Star Motors. That was the company founded by Chrysler and Mitsubishi, used to build a co-branded line of cars between 1989 through 1999 - though the company was officially dissolved in 1993, and the Chrysler branded cars were only offered through 1997. The model line up included the Mitsubishi Eclipse, Eagle Talon, and Plymouth Laser (as well as the Galant VR-4 for a a couple of the early years).
Partnering between auto manufacturers was quite common in the 80's and 90's. Many of the small pickups were co-branded to help more automakers bring new vehicles to market under their brand, while keep production costs low. You saw it with Mitsubishi and Chrysler, Ford and Mazda, Chevrolet and Isuzu, and a few others. Mitsubishi fans will also remember the 3000GT and Dodge Stealth collaboration.
For DSM car enthusiasts, the partnership resulted in a cult classic. The rally-bred 4G63t engine used in the turbocharged Eclipse, Talon, Laser, and Galant VR-4 will be sought after for many years. You could find them in FWD versions and AWD, and as time goes on, the turbocharged DSMs will become more difficult to find, and thus, will likely go up in value eventually. The AWD versions will be the cream of the crop.
The 1991-1992 Mitsubishi Galant VR-4 and 1991-1992 Mitsubishi Eclipse shared most of the drivetrain and frame components, and was used in the World Rally Championship. The Galant VR-4 was built in limited numbers and sold in Japan, with a small number of them being imported to the United States and other countries around the world. While the Eclipse, Talon, and Laser were built and sold only in the United States (with a few rare exceptions).
There will always be a debate on whether or not a non-4G63 DSM is actually considered a true DSM, as most of those cars were fitted with a Chrysler engine (outside of the convertibles). As far as this website is concerned, those are still DSMs. The same goes for the 1995-1999 DSM cars, which some will also argue are not "true" DSMs, since Diamond Star Motors was no longer in business when those cars were sold. The reality is, the tooling used to build those cars came from the DSM collaboration, so again, on this website, we do consider them to be DSMs. Everyone is welcome to keep those debates going though!
Read how Wikipedia defines the DSM here: