Posts Tagged ‘self-driving car’
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
The Nissan-Renault-Mitsubishi Alliance recently unveiled plans to seek out and talk “partnership” with Robotaxi companies in the coming months. If unfamiliar with the term “Robotaxi,” think of it like an autonomous, self-driving taxi or Uber, that may also have some artificial intelligence integrated into the console for human-to-robot interaction. Maybe interacting with these “Robotaxis” will be as simple as telling the vehicle where to go, or maybe as advanced and new age as the virtual assistant in the Mitsubishi Connect concept movie (seen below).
It shouldn’t come as any surprise. Since Mitsubishi and Nissan-Renault signed off on their partnership, Mitsubishi has looked into Nissan-Renault resources for global expansion. Not only that, but the Nissan-Renault Mitsubishi Alliance as a whole has plans to hit the hybrid and electric vehicle market hard with a total of 500,000 plug-in electric hybrid vehicles (PHEVs) in the making. In addition to this, the alliance plans to develop fifteen models with autonomous features by 2022, including a fully autonomous self-driving vehicle.
This brings up a question. Will these self-driving vehicles be able to deliver all of the exciting prospects Mitsubishi debuted at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show with their Mitsubishi e-Evolution or the Mitsubishi Electric Emirai 4? Will these autonomous vehicles be as advanced as to support artificial intelligence by Mitsubishi or other automakers in the industry? Several companies are already working on self-driving vehicles, such as Google, Uber, Apple, Chevrolet, and others. Chevrolet/GM even has claims to already be the first automaker to produce a driverless car with all the success of the self-driving Chevrolet Bolt EV.
100 must be the lucky number for Mitsubishi, because 2017 marks 100 years that the automotive company has been in business, and it’s surprise after surprise. First they gave us a throwback with the Eclipse Cross debut at the Geneva Motor Show. Then they added a limited edition to the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport, and gave the discontinued Lancer a limited edition as well. They’re even bringing back their very first model A as a PHEV, redesigned by the same guys behind MTV’s Pimp My Ride. Can it get any better? Yes, it can.
Mitsubishi already has an electric vehicle, the Mitsubishi i-Miev, and they’re releasing an all-electric commercial truck line very soon. We know they plan to enter the autonomous car race as well, given their current development of autonomous mapping technology. What’s next for the auto brand? Let’s just say West Coast Customs isn’t the only company that’s going to give Mitsubishi Motors a new look.