Mitsubishi Vision Ralliart concept revealed

Meet the future of the revived Mitsubishi Ralliart brand, previewed with a plug-in hybrid family SUV offering 22-inch wheels and a Formula One-inspired rear diffuser.

Mitsubishi has revealed a preview of its plans for the revived Ralliart performance sub-brand, with the Vision Ralliart concept – but it has little in common with the rally-ready performance sedans and hatchbacks of Ralliart’s past.

As predicted, the new Vision Ralliart concept is based on the latest-generation Outlander Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV) family SUV – rather than the turbo-petrol Lancer and Colt compact cars that used to wear the Ralliart moniker – but injects a dose of styling aggression in a bid to justify its badge.

While the Vision Ralliart remains a concept car for now, Mitsubishi says “customer feedback … will be used in future development of Mitsubishi vehicles”. Previous rumours suggested a production Outlander Evolution was in the works, however it’s believed those reports referred to the concept revealed today.

Flared wheel arches on each corner hide super-sized 22-inch alloy wheels (with a grey finish), which cover enlarged brake discs and six-piston calipers that Mitsubishi says “provide improved braking performance [to match] the powerful torque of the motors.”

New front and rear bumpers feature, with a honeycomb-patterned front grille insert with active shutters (that open or close depending on the cooling requirements), and an aggressive rear diffuser with deep inserts and a Formula One-style lower rain light.

The concept’s matte black exterior paint “shows blue highlights when hit by light, creating a deep, multidimensional expression that enhances the vehicle’s high-quality feel,” according to Mitsubishi.

While not explicitly confirmed in Mitsubishi’s media materials, the Vision Ralliart is a plug-in hybrid – confirmed by the filler flap on the left side of the vehicle, used for charging in the standard Outlander PHEV.

No performance figures have been announced, though Mitsubishi says the concept offers “higher motor output” versus the standard model – which uses 85kW front and 100kW rear electric motors, paired to a 98kW/155Nm petrol engine – plus an enlarged battery over the production car’s 20kWh unit, and “sportier 4-wheel control turning”.

“The Vision Ralliart Concept embodies Mitsubishi Motors’ vision for the new Ralliart and brings together the company’s engineering and passion for Monozukuri (craftsmanship). This is a concept car that expresses the possibilities of the new Ralliart, with elevated acceleration, cornering and braking in all road and weather conditions,” Mitsubishi said in a media statement.

The Mitsubishi Vision Ralliart concept will make its public debut later this week at the Tokyo Auto Salon.

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