Since the beginning of the year, we’ve heard little from or about Mitsubishi. The small Japanese automaker, caught between its conflicting partners, Nissan and Renault, has been hit hard by the economic fallout of the pandemic and is working diligently to get through it. Now it's broken its silence with the announcement of a series of changes to its range of models for the year 2021, and even beyond to 2022.
Here's what we can expect from the Mitsubishi brand in the coming months.
One of the brand's most popular vehicles, the Outlander PHEV plug-in hybrid SUV, will get a new hybrid powertrain featuring a bigger, more-powerful gas engine and improved electric technology. As a result, we can expect to see it offer a longer range and a higher speed ceiling for driving in electric-only mode. The model will also benefit from other improvements, the company promises.
The same goes for the regular Outlander, for which a new generation is expected. Mitsubishi characterizes its next design as "bold, aggressive and distinctive". According to images of camouflaged versions circulating on the Internet, it’s likely the model will be at least partially inspired by the Engelberg Tourer concept presented at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show.
The next Outlander, as we’ve previously reported, will be the first vehicle produced by Mitsubishi since the start of the partnership with Nissan and Renault. Its structure will be that of the new Nissan Rogue and its powertrain will also be borrowed from Nissan.
Mitsubishi has confirmed that the revised North American Mirage will get the same styling as the versions sold abroad. As you can see on the photo provided by Mitsubishi, its look falls in line with the other models in the company’s lineup.
Unfortunately, we can't say it's beautiful; at first glance it's downright unappealing. In the eye of the beholder, as they say…
The Eclipse Cross
Mitsubishi’s middle-child SUV will benefit from some aesthetic updates. The front end will borrow elements of the brand's future design language, and early spy photos suggest that the designers have softened the approach in the back. Inside, the Eclipse Cross will get a new multimedia system, but we don't know what features it will incorporate yet.
The new Outlander PHEV will arrive in dealerships in the first quarter of next year, as a 2021 model. Mitsubishi will begin delivering the Mirage (2021 model) and Eclipse Cross (2022 model) in the first quarter of 2021. The next-generation Outlander will arrive last, in the second quarter of 2021. It will also be designated a 2022 model.