The Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution Is dead and it’s not coming back - at least not for nowby Dim Angelov, on LISTEN 02:16
The automotive industry is fast-paced and not everyone manages to adapt. Mitsubishi is a perfect example as the once glorious carmaker has gradually been reduced to making cheap and boring vehicles. Mitsubishi is not in a good place financially and axing their pride and joy – the Lancer Evolution – speaks louder than any words about Mitsubishi’s declining situation. Given the recent developments, it seems Mitsubishi’s future will involve a bland vehicle lineup and the obligatory electrification, probably with help from Nissan.
According to Mitsubishi Motors CEO and President, Takao Kato, the Lancer Evolution simply does not make any financial sense, despite investors pushing for the resurrection of the iconic model, discontinued in 2016.
Despite the brand’s planned return to motorsports and the resurrection of Mitsubishi’s Ralliart Racing Division, the “Evo” will remain in the past, at least for now. This is especially sad when we consider the Evolution’s old rival is still in production, with its latest iteration coming out in 2022.
Kato points out the need to return to profitability and the best course for action will be to broaden the brand’s EV range.
Mitsubishi’s CEO also points out that the focus on electrification will justify the development costs, whereas they wouldn’t for a performance car with a small niche market.
Sadly, the company cannot do both, as it lacks financial strength.
"We had a big deficit in the previous fiscal year, so we first revived the company and then put out the cars that fans are waiting for. I want to go back to building the “Evo” too."
Takao Kato also shared that Mitsubishi will offer EV versions of “all vehicle types, by 2030”, which means that if the Lancer Evolution makes a return, it will most likely feature an electric drivetrain, probably shared with Nissan and Renault models. Here’s an interesting theory – should Mitsubishi recover financially, we might see a resurrected Evolution as a flagship of a separate EV/hybrid brand, just like Volvo did with Polestar.