The fate of the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution has been in serious limbo for a while now. The current car will die soon, and conspiring against a new generation is the fact Mitsubishi is focusing on crossovers and hybrids. But does that mean the next Evo could be a plug-in based on a crossover?
Mitsubishi's UK managing director told Auto Express that if the Evo were to return, it would likely be based on the ASX compact crossover, sold here as the Outlander Sport. It makes sense, since the XR-PHEV concept shown in Tokyo last year was presented as a crossover coupe and hinted at the next-gen Outlander Sport.
While Auto Express took this to mean the Evo could turn into some kind of new 3000GT, I think it's more likely what Mitsubishi hinted at was something more along the lines of a Range Rover Evoque or Mini Paceman kind of thing. While the Paceman isn't setting sales records, that isn't stopping companies from pursuing the genre. BMW X2, anyone?
Mitsubishi would be wise to come up with some new Evo, given that it's just thrown away recognizable nameplates as it's tried to stay in business in the last decade. In some ways, a crossover sort of gels with its rally heritage. But any new Evo is a tough act to follow, and this is sure to be a tough sell with the enthusiasts.