Tag Archives: EV platform

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New EV Minicar from Mitsubishi Motors

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Alternative fuel vehicles are starting to grow in popularity. We’re not saying hybrid cars, plug-ins, and electric vehicles (EVs) are going to become the norm – no one is saying that. Then again, SUVs were pretty impractical 20 years ago when all they were known for was towing, cargo space, and able to handle varying types of terrain (unless you’re accounting for its high center of gravity). So, if over two decades, these large vehicles could eventually give rise to crossovers and eventually evolve into vehicles that can do all of the above and still offer some decent fuel economy numbers, perhaps a world of EVs isn’t too far off. With many automakers already diving in at full-speed, Mitsubishi Motors is wading into the shallow end with a new platform from Nissan.

In case anyone forgot or was unaware, Mitsubishi and Nissan are tag-teaming the auto industry with their buddy Renault. Known as the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, back in May of 2020, this automotive group held a digital press conference to review its five (or six) year business plan – Alliance 2022. With lots of investments made with the Alliance Ventures plan, and COVID-19 putting all kinds of investments in a stranglehold, a new business strategy needed to come together.

The Alliance calls it a “Follow-the-Leader” pattern – or strategy. Each automaker within the group is meant to share technology and work together to produce great vehicles en masse, but each automaker will also be in competition with the other. What this means is, at first, each automaker has its own region to set up shop, and one of those automakers will release a new vehicle in its respective region. If sales go well, the other automakers follow suit in a rebadged version in their respective regions before cross-selling into the regions of the other parties in the Alliance.

That brings us to the latest announcement from Nissan and Mitsubishi Motors. Remember that new cross-brand EV platform Nissan was working on? Shared between Nissan, Renault, and Mitsubishi Motors, able to change based on the size, style, and whatever use the automaker would like to gear it towards. This platform could even work on, say, a minicar? If we were to shake a magic 8-ball right about now, then “All signs are pointing to yes.”

Nissan and Mitsubishi Motors recently announced a new electric minicar heading to the Japan auto market. With release possibly this year, going for less than 2 million yen ($18,400), the vehicle is bound to be a hit overseas. Known as “kei cars” in Japan, this type of vehicle makes up 40-percent of all sales in the country. Able to provide over 124 miles (200 km) of range, this Mitsubishi minicar should already prove some healthy competition for the handful of electric minicars set to hit the Japanese market within the next year.

Will this vehicle also come stateside? Well that depends on how well it does in Japan, but if anyone remembers the Mitsubishi i-MiEV, things didn’t bode well for the electric mini in the U.S., only lasting a short while. With the new EV platform from Nissan and a boost from Renault, this new electric minicar might just have a chance, and with the new “Follow-the-Leader” business strategy, if this minicar does do well in Japan, we’re bound to see it in other regions, including North America.

What do you think of an electric minicar? Several automakers see it as the new wave after the pandemic changed the world view on vehicles and how many people should really be in a tight space, such as a not-so-well ventilated automobile? Share your thoughts with us on Miami Lakes Mitsubishi social media.

Photo Source/Copyright: Carscoops/Mitsubishi Motors
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New Business Plans to be Announced by Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance

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Ever since the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance was formed in 2017, and later announced Alliance 2022 and its six-year plan, there hasn’t been a lot of word on what is going on. Yes, we hear about the occasional investment the Alliance makes through Alliance 2022, a $1 billion fundraising campaign started to help develop new startups and entrepreneurs in technology for self-driving robotaxis, car sharing networks, new EV batteries, and new forms of EV charging. Aside from that, there hasn’t been much talk about plans for 2022, two years away. When we take a look at the past few years, progress has slowly been building, and after a meeting between the top leaders of each automaker, the three agreed to share new medium-term business plans around May 2020.

This is great news! Assuming the six-year plan started in 2018 (although it’s more like five years if it ends in 2022), the Alliance is at the halfway point and thus has new plans to put into play at the halfway point. Nissan Motor Co., Renault SA, and Mitsubishi Motors Corp. (MMC) have all agreed to share their respective new medium-term business plans following an agreement at a meeting held between the top leaders of the three-way automotive alliance at Nissan’s headquarters in Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture, south of Tokyo. Nissan President Makoto Uchida had this to say –

“Under the plans, one with the greatest competitiveness will lead the other two in each category, such as compact cars and electric vehicles.”

Simply put, the Alliance is turning into a triangle of sorts. One automaker with success and already proving to be a competitive name in the industry will share technology and success with the other two so that they may also be successful while still remaining competitive internally as well as externally. This is abundantly clear with Mitsubishi Motors, initially slated to be in charge of plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) development. We could say the automaker is already well on its way with concepts like the Mitsubishi Engelberg Tourer at the 2019 Geneva International Motor Show, or the Mi-TECH concept at the 2019 Tokyo Motor Show, a plug-in hybrid electric engine that replaces the need for an internal combustion engine with a lightweight, compact gas turbine engine-generator powerful enough to drive a small SUV, and able to be powered by various fuel sources, including diesel, kerosene, and alcohol.

When it came to electric vehicle technology, Mitsubishi Motors had okay success with the i-MieV, but the Nissan Leaf has been a success story for all-electric vehicles and Nissan. As luck would have it, Nissan also recently announced the development of a new cross-brand EV platform that will not only be available to all three automakers for future all-electric and battery-electric vehicles, but will also be flexible. This means that the new platform can be utilized by either automaker, and changed based on the size, style, and purpose of its intended use, and most likely different powertrains as well.

Could we see an electric Mitsubishi Mirage? The next-gen Mitsubishi Mirage is supposed to be based on the Nissan Juke, and if electric vehicles and compact cars are on the docket for mid-term business plans, is it really such a farfetched idea? We don’t think so. Tell us your thoughts. Join the discussion about the promising new business plans on Miami Lakes Mitsubishi social media.

Photo Source/Copyright: nippon.com
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Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Talk New Cross-Brand EV Platform

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Back when Mitsubishi Motors first joined the Renault-Nissan Alliance, there was a lot of talk about what kind of technology the three automakers would share. When it came to Mitsubishi, a lot of the automaker’s success in alternative fuel stemmed mainly from the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV. Working towards alternative fuel vehicles and self-driving technology, the Alliance intended to produce more PHEVs using technology from Mitsubishi and more electric vehicles, or EVs, using the success of all-electric vehicles from Nissan, the Nissan Leaf. A concept for a cross-brand EV platform was the first objective on the list, but quickly disappeared for three years. Finally, in January 2020, a discussion about the cross-brand EV platform has popped back up, and it definitely seems to be coming from the Nissan leg of the Alliance.

It has been some time now since Nissan did anything with an all-electric vehicle. The Nissan Leaf came out in 2009 with big EV ambitions, but aside from a second-generation model, the automaker didn’t do much. Part of the success intended for the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance was the production of cross-brand EV technology. A lot of this was detailed in their Alliance 2022 six-year mid-term plan, focused on cross-brand platform sharing of platforms and powertrains, electrification, connectivity, and autonomous drive technologies. The first step, platforms and powertrains, are already in development.

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New Cross-Brand EV Platform from Nissan-Mitsubishi

Miami Lakes Cross Brand EV Nissan Mitsubishi

Not too long ago Nissan bought a large share of Mitsubishi to stop the versatile motor company from going under. It was back in 2016, and although one would think the news would settle like the dust of many company changes (Apple), it doesn’t seem like Nissan or Mitsubishi planned to be quiet for long and they keep presenting us with new concepts, like the new Mitsubishi-Nissan EV.

So the Nissan-Mitsubishi merge is quickly becoming a mutually beneficial partnership. With Nissan having a strong hand in electric vehicle (EV) tech and Mitsubishi knowing how to make a great PHEV, those are some of the first changes we’ll see. Along with a newly designed Lancer, it’s about time, the next vehicle to get a new look may be a brand new i-Miev or something else altogether.

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