Mitsubishi Aims To Plug In Entire Range Within 4 Years

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2014 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

2014 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

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In the automotive world, there are automakers who ignore plug-in vehicle technology, those who experiment with it, those who do it because they have to, and those for whom it is part of the company future

With its 2012 i electric minicar already on sale in the U.S., and its Outlander plug-in hybrid on the way this fall, Mitsubishi is clearly the latter, but according to Autocar, the Japanese automaker is planning more than just a few plug-in cars.

Over the next four years, it reports, Mitsubishi will refresh its entire model range, offering customers a plug-in and regular version of each. 

Rather than offer electric and plug-in hybrid versions of the same car, Mitsubishi’s aim is to build electric-only variants of its smaller gasoline cars, while building plug-in hybrid versions of its larger and sportier cars. 

Mitsubishi Outlander

Mitsubishi Outlander

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Looking at Mitsubishi’s current U.S. offerings, we’d expect this translates to offering an electric compact similar in size to the current 2012 Lancer, while offering plug-in hybrid solutions for all of its other cars. 

Although it has yet to prove its plug-in hybrid technology in the marketplace, Mitsubishi is confident that it has engineered a drivetrain that consumers will love. 

Talking about the up-coming 2013 Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid, Lance Bradley, managing director of Mitsubishi UK, was keen to emphasize the car’s performance. 

2012 Mitsubishi i

2012 Mitsubishi i

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“[It] feels like it offers the performance of a 3.0-liter V6 petrol engine,” he said, adding that he expected the vehicle to steal sales from the Lexus RX450h and other crossover vehicles. 

With a predicted all-electric range of 25 miles and a gas mileage efficiency expected to be around 109 miles per gallon, Bradley could be right -- especially if it is the first plug-in hybrid crossover to the market. 

Of course, the real challenge for Mitsubishi is to convince die-hard fans that plug-in technology is the way to go. 

And when that convincing could come at the hands of a diesel-electric plug-in Evo XI? That’s when we really do know plug-in vehicles are having an effect. 

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