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Mitsubishi Teases the New Eclipse Cross for 2021

When Mitsubishi put an end to the Lancer, everyone thought it was going to be the end of their sports cars. Then, with the announcement of the return of the Eclipse, many fans rejoiced, but now when they found out the Eclipse was returning as a crossover. That’s definitely not what people think of when they think of the rally cars Mitsubishi is known for. Then came the e-Evolution concept, a concept said to bring back the Evolution nameplate the Lancer was known for, maybe even the new Lancer. The e-Evolution remains a concept, but it turns out while also showing off the look of the e-Evolution, the automaker was also testing the new look for the Eclipse Cross refresh.

“The new design draws inspiration from the MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT*1 emphasizing the strength and dynamics from our SUV heritage, while enhancing the cleanliness and elegance of a coupe-like SUV…The Eclipse Cross is the first step toward the next generation of Mitsubishi Design, and there is so much more to come.” – Seiji Watanabe, division general manager of Design, MMC

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Mitsubishi Motors and Nashville Join Forces to Create the Small Batch – Big Ideas Entrepreneur Network

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Mitsubishi Motors sure has been busy since the announcement of the mid-term plans from the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance. With a soon-to-be-released vehicle from the C/D segment, a lot of us are hoping for a possible new sports car from Mitsubishi to be released, but those are very high hopes. The most recent news was about the Outlander plug-in hybrid, entering the 2020 Rebelle Rally, a racing competition not unfamiliar to the automaker, all part of its Small Batch – Big Impact Initiative. Over the course of a year, now coming to an end, Mitsubishi Motors has one more push, and has partnered with the Nashville Entrepreneur Center (EC) to create the first-ever Small Batch – Big Ideas Entrepreneur Network.

The Small Batch – Big Initiative has sparked a lot of community involvement with Mitsubishi Motors North America (MMNA). Along with entering the Rebelle Rally twice, once with the Outlander PHEV and last year with a modified Eclipse Cross, Mitsubishi Motors has also helped charities and donated vehicles during the 2019 Mitsubishi Motors Las Vegas Bowl. This wouldn’t be the first time MMNA has partnered with Nashville either. Having helped the Nashville-based Community Resource Center (CRC) in its disaster relief efforts after a 2020 Tornado event in early March affected Middle Tennessee and surrounding areas, Mitsubishi returns to push the community forward. This time, it’s on a more positive note with the new network.

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Would You Import a Mitsubishi Sports Car from Japan?

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A few years back, we were contemplating the capabilities of the upcoming, maybe now dead, Mitsubishi Lancer Crossover. We’ve heard next to nothing about this vehicle since 2018 with all the plug-in hybrid concepts coming from Mitsubishi Motors like the Mi-TECH Buggy and the Engelberg Tourer, and the mystery car announced during the mid-term plans for Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance don’t seem to be about the new Lancer. Assuming the Lancer Crossover and the “performance” tag Mitsubishi slapped on it, where does that leave us? Well, there’s always the ability to import.

Wait, what? People can do that? Yes, it’s true – you can order a vehicle from overseas to be delivered to your front door for a couple of extra thousand USD. The problem is, most of these vehicles can’t be legally driven, and the only reason someone would get a vehicle imported would be for display purposes – a collector’s item, and that’s about it. However, there is a loophole to this rule, and who doesn’t love a good loophole? According to hack of sorts, if a vehicle is 25 years or older, it’s free game. Wouldn’t you know, in 2019, the U.S. released a list of vehicles now available for import, and a lesser-known Mitsubishi Sports Car is on that list.

Does anyone remember the Mitsubishi FTO? We don’t blame you if not. Produced between 1994 to 2000, a good chunk of the current buying demographic didn’t even have a learner’s permit around that time. Those of us who had a license and were driving about most likely got something in the early-to-late 2000s – raise your hand if your 2009/2010 model is starting to show its age. When it comes to the Mitsubishi FTO, the 1994-1996 model years are able to be imported and driven on the roads legally.

Now, we won’t lie, it can be a little costly. A quick search on the internet ranges from $1500-4500 to import a vehicle, and that includes destination fee and delivery. Mind you, this is a 25-year-old or older car, so it isn’t going to be up to par with vehicles today. We’re looking at a vehicle able to generate a little less than 200 horsepower at its best, but Chevy Corvettes of the 90s only went up to 250, so it’s not that far from the mark of prestige and power. If looking for the top of the line, consumers will want to look for the Mitsubishi FTO GPX, a model with only 207 units ever produced – definitely a rare vehicle that will get people talking.

Now, why the Mitsubishi FTO? If it’s so old, why would anyone want it? One reason – race cars. Mitsubishi Motors has a rich history of rally cars, and the Mitsubishi Evolution series was one of the best. Mod-friendly, able to take sharp turns without losing traction, and just having a lot of cool factors in terms of style, many fans were sad to see it go. Before the FTO was the Mitsubishi Galant FTO, one of Japan’s first sports cars that did pretty well in terms of sales. The Mitsubishi FTO pays homage to the original Galant FTO to relive its success as a true sports car from Mitsubishi Motors. Best of all, with the FTO as old as it is, your average consumer may not need to pay more than $10,000 for the best-of-the-best Japan can offer.

That’s not a bad deal for a sports car. Plus, with the extra cash someone would save by purchasing a $10,000 sports car, they could look into some upgrades, body shops, and companies that specialize in aftermarket customization. Would you import a vehicle from Japan to drive a sports car from Mitsubishi Motors again? Let us know on Miami Lakes Mitsubishi social media.

Photo Source/Copyright: TorqueGT
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Mitsubishi Motors Mourns the Loss of Former CEO Osamu Masuko

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The auto industry has hit many hardships this year with the COVID-19 pandemic shutting down manufacturing plants and causing many financial losses. In late May 2020, the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance announced mid-term plans for the future development of the alliance and automotive vehicles going forward. Things were looking up, Mitsubishi Motors was the first automaker set to enter the market with a new vehicle, and a lot of interesting technology was on the rise. As the saying goes, open a window, close a door, and Mitsubishi Motors recently lost a strong member of the team at the end of August with the passing of former CEO Osamu Masuko.

What a huge loss for the automaker. Having joined Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) in 2005, Masuko spent 16 years at Mitsubishi, rebuilding the brand and bringing it back from the brink of collapse time and again. A company with hardship needs a strong leader, and Masuko was the man for the job. According to the company, the many achievements of the automaker today are thanks to his management skills that helped the company overcome many difficulties.

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