Mitsubishi Motors announced Friday it will invest as much as $13.2 billion into electrification as part of its global comeback bid. The scheme will spawn a broad range of products, including an electric pickup truck alongside a conventional, internal combustion-powered pickup.
The trucks were confirmed as part of Mitsubishi’s Mid-Term Business Plan that will commit $10.26 billion to $13.19 billion to electrification through 2030. The money will be spent on R&D and new facilities, including those used for battery production, with more than $1.5 billion earmarked for securing 15 gigawatt-hours of annual battery supply. Mitsubishi expects this investment to cut vehicle CO2 emissions by 40% come 2025, and operational CO2 in half by 2030.
By that point, Mitsubishi expects EVs to account for half its global sales, though it doesn’t forecast full electrification until 2035. That means ICE will still play a central role in Mitsubishi’s product plans for the next five years, which will see it launch 16 products globally, nine of them electrified in one way or another.
Mitsubishi’s new products for the next five years. Mitsubishi Motors
A slide in Mitsubishi’s presentation confirms a wide range of vehicles, from the aforementioned pickups to full-size SUVs and tiny EVs, and everything in between. Mitsubishi Motors CEO Takao Kato said that U.S.-bound EVs will have to be planned with the help of local Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance partner Nissan, which has the domestic manufacturing needed to qualify for the new federal EV tax credit under the Inflation Reduction Act.
Some of the vehicles shown above will broaden Mitsubishi’s lineup of electrified vehicles in the U.S., though the Renault-based Colt hybrid won’t be among them. Mitsubishi’s U.S. product planner confirmed a pickup is of interest, though they emphasized that the global-market Triton isn’t a good candidate due to the Chicken Tax. The prospects for the electric pickup—while still tailored to Mitsubishi’s best markets in Asia and Australia—look better, though whether it’s a long-range model like most American electric trucks or something more affordable doesn’t sound like it has been decided.
“I think there will be demand for battery-electric pickups. In the U.S., the Ford Lightning F-150 is quite popular. So, there will be such a trend,” Kato said, according to Automotive News. “There is demand for environmentally friendly pickups with shorter driving range. So, we would like to consider such possibility as well.”
Mitsubishi Ralliart teaser. Mitsubishi Motors
Mitsubishi performance cars will also return as soon as next year, which rumors indicate to be an “almighty” Outlander PHEV-based Ralliart SUV. At least one other performance model may be in the works, and Mitsubishi closed its presentation on a slide (above) showing the Ralliart Triton that won its debut rally in 2022. No caption was included to hint at its possible significance, however.
Mitsubishi enters 2023 with two years of sales growth and a strong showing in JD Power’s 2023 dependability study, beating Toyota. A company spokesperson admitted at the 2023 Outlander PHEV‘s launch that Mitsubishi still isn’t a destination brand, though its investment in desirable products such as pickups and performance vehicles may yet change that.
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