Mitsubishi Has all But Comfirmed that it Will Slander the EVO Name by Plastering it on an SUV
Oh, God. Please, no!by Kirby Garlitos, on
You might want to sit down for this, especially if you’re a card-carrying member of the Mitsubishi Evolution fan club. A high-ranking Mitsubishi executive really spoke out on the possibility of bringing the iconic nameplate back in the future. He didn’t exactly specify how the Japanese automaker plans to do it, but if it did, there’s a possibility that it wouldn’t return in the state that earned it a place in the annals of automotive history as one of the most iconic rally-bred, performance cars in the world. Instead — this is the part where you really have to sit down — the Evo name could return and be used on an SUV. Gulp.
There’s nothing in the pipeline at the moment, but anything’s possible – nothing’s ruled in, and nothing’s ruled out.
If you’ve come back to your senses after fainting, a point of order is, well, in order. Mitsubishi UK managing director Lance Bradley didn’t specifically say that the company was bringing back the EVO name and slapping it on an SUV. But he didn’t outrightly dismiss it either. In his own words, he said, “There’s nothing in the pipeline at the moment, but anything’s possible – nothing’s ruled in, and nothing’s ruled out.”
"If there were to be one, it would probably be different from what it’s currently,” he went on to say. “The day of the very high-powered sedan car from us is probably gone, but as long as it lives up to the ideals, the Evo demonstrated there’s no reason why we couldn’t do it with a different kind of vehicle.”
So basically, the Evolution nameplate, as iconic a nameplate as we have in the industry, may or may not return, though if it did, it might be used on a different kind of vehicle. Bradley also hinted that Mitsubishi’s focus at the moment is on SUVs and electrified drivetrains and that if there was a way to introduce a more performance-oriented version of these models, it’s something that Mitsubishi is going to look into. Put those statements together, and it looks as if there’s at least some consideration within Mitsubishi of dusting off the EVO name if an opportunity to put it on an SUV arises.
There’s at least some consideration within Mitsubishi of dusting off the EVO name if an opportunity to put it on an SUV arises.
To be fair, it’s not a bad idea. Other automakers have launched their own performance SUVs without much resistance from the public. But Mitsubishi is walking a fine line here because of how important the Evolution nameplate is to a lot of people all over the world. The Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution is arguably the most famous Mitsubishi model in history. It spawned ten generations and its treated with reverence from all corners of the world.
The thought — and fear — of cheapening the name by attaching it to an SUV is the biggest point of concern. Fortunately, Mitsubishi is aware of the situation and the subsequent risk of using the EVO name incorrectly. "You do have to be very sensitive," Bradley said. "It’s an iconic car, and there’s a lot of people with a very emotional attachment. If you’ve got an icon you’ve got to be careful not to do anything that undermines it, and sometimes it’s better to leave things alone, rather than undermining it."
In this case, Mitsubishi is better off leaving the EVO name alone.
Read our full review on the 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X.
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Source: Motor 1