The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance is alive and well. Sure, for a moment there, it seemed like the Alliance and the shared funding campaign, Alliance Ventures, may have to disassemble under the pressure of the Coronavirus pandemic continuing to keep the auto industry and the auto market in disarray. However, in February 2020, the Alliance announced the discussion of Medium-term plans for Alliance 2022, the roadmap for each of the three brands in the coming years. Since the Alliance formed, we’ve been waiting for the first rebadged vehicle to appear, and it turns out the next plug-in hybrid from Mitsubishi Motors will be based on the first plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) by Nissan, the Rogue Sport. But wait, wasn’t Mitsubishi in charge of plug-in hybrid technology?
Yes, Mitsubishi Motors is supposed to be at the cornerstone of the plug-in hybrid triangle, with Nissan in charge of electric vehicles (EV) and Renault focused on self-driving technology and connected services. At least, that’s how things have gone up until now. Perhaps the medium-term plans originally set for this month will shine some light on that. Until then, Mitsubishi is getting some technology from Nissan, but it wasn’t the shared EV platform by Nissan we’ve been reading about. Instead, Nissan will be supplementing Mitsubishi with a plug-in hybrid powertrain for the next generation of the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV.
Hold the phone! Mitsubishi Motors, in charge of plug-in hybrid technology, is going to have its own plug-in hybrid SUV powered by Nissan? It just doesn’t make any sense, but according to Automotive News, the next Outlander will be powered by a Nissan engine, and the PHEV will come with the same hybrid powertrain of the Rogue Sport. The Outlander is definitely making the change, but doesn’t Mitsubishi have a couple of great concepts to replace the Outlander and Outlander PHEV already?
During the 2019 Geneva International Motor Show, Mitsubishi debuted the Engelberg Tourer concept, a plug-in hybrid SUV designed to replace the Outlander PHEV. The Engelberg Tourer even has the same powertrain design with two electric motors, one on each axle of the SUV. Equipped with Mitsubishi Motors signature “Super” All-Wheel Control technology, the Engelberg Tourer was already superior to the Outlander PHEV with an all-electric range of 43 miles and a total range of 434 miles. Then there was the MI-TECH at the 2019 Tokyo Motor Show.
Mitsubishi Motors really got lucky being able to release two concepts last year, and the MI-TECH Electric Buggy was definitely something else. A completely new take on plug-in hybrid vehicles, not only did Mitsubishi double the number of electric motors again, pairing one with each wheel, but the gasoline engine is no longer an internal combustion engine. Instead, under the hood will be a gas turbine engine, like a freaking jet! Surely this could be the next Outlander PHEV is turned into an SUV instead of a dune buggy.
We’re all waiting to hear what the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance has planned for Alliance 2022 and Alliance Ventures over the next few years. Find out when we cover the news and updates when you follow Miami Lakes Mitsubishi on social media.