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“Evo” Nameplate May Soon Return to Mitsubishi’s Lineup in a Much Different Form

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Mitsubishi isn't ruling out the return of the "Evolution" moniker, but it likely won't be applied to a sports sedan

2015 Lancer Evolution Final Edition

A new Mitsubishi Evo might bear little resemblance to the previous model

Early last year, Mitsubishi announced its intention to resurrect the Mitsubishi Eclipse. When the new Eclipse finally arrived, however, it was not a sporty compact car like its preceding vehicle model, but rather a crossover called the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross.

According to recent reports, the Mitsubishi Evolution could soon undergo a similar resurrection.

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The original Mitsubishi Evolution, affectionately nicknamed the Evo, was a sports sedan version of the Mitsubishi Lancer. Despite a devoted following, the Evo exited production in back2016, with the Lancer’s own cancellation following shortly after.

During a recent interview with Motor1, Mitsubishi’s UK managing director, Lance Bradley, indicated while there were no immediate plans to bring back the Evo nameplate, there was “no reason” why the moniker couldn’t return in the near future. However, he added the stipulation that if the Evo did make a return to the Mitsubishi lineup, it would likely be “different” compared to its previous incarnation.

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“Our focus is on SUVs and electrified drivetrains, but it’s possible that there could be an option for a more performance-orientated version of one of the models,” Bradley elaborated. “The hybrid market is still developing, but an electric drivetrain is usually quicker than an internal combustion powertrain, so you can have some very exciting electrified drivetrains.”

Transforming the Eclipse into a crossover was not a move absent of controversy when it was first announced. Fans of the Evo are just as passionate as Eclipse enthusiasts, and Bradley stated that Mitsubishi would have to be careful with what it does with the Evo name.

2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross at Geneva

The Mitsubishi Eclipse’s resurrection was not without controversy

“It’s an iconic car and there’s a lot of people with a very emotional attachment,” Bradley warned. “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 terms of the Evo’s future at Mitsubishi, it’s as Bradley states: “nothing’s ruled in and nothing’s ruled out.” Still, after the recent resurrection of the Eclipse, it wouldn’t be shocking to see the Evo name applied to a drastically different model in the near future.

News Source: Motor1