New crossover set to be unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show in March.
Crossovers are big business in the US, to a point that they have become pivotal to the success of mainstream manufacturers. Mitsubishi wants to expand its reach and become more relevant in America, so rather than making a successor to the Evolution sedan like it should be doing, which is ending production this August, the Japanese automaker is instead focusing its attention on making a new Crossover to be sold in the US early next year. Will it be the next Lancer? Previous rumors suggest so, sadly.
We’ll find out for sure, however, when Mitsubishi’s first Crossover is revealed in a couple of months at the Geneva Motor Show. While we may sound pessimistic at the prospect of the Evolution getting the crossover treatment, Mitsubishi has high hopes. Speaking to the press at Detroit, Don Swearingen, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Mitsubishi Motors North America, said the new crossover “will be the best vehicle Mitsubishi has ever produced.” It will receive a new turbocharged, four-cylinder engine, along with plenty of safety technology, and will slot in-between the Outlander and Outlander Sport in the Mitsubishi range. A plug-in hybrid variant is expected to follow later down the line.
Stylistically, we expect the new crossover to take its cues from the EX Concept, since Swearingen already confirmed it will influence the design direction of future Mitsubishis. Mitsubishi may be struggling to stay relevant in the US, but its sales are on the rise, with 2016 marking its fourth consecutive year of growth. Mitsubishi dealers in America have also been reporting 2016 as the most profitable year for the company since 2002. 65 percent of its sales last year were represented by the Outlander and Outlander Sport, so adding a crossover to the profitable line-up makes business sense, no matter how much we’re craving a new generation Evolution.