Rumours have surfaced that Mitsubishi might answer the calls of car enthusiasts across the globe and bring back its four-wheel drive performance car, the Lancer Evo.
Autocar has reported that the successor to the Mitsubishi Evo X could be built on the new CMF-C/D F4 platform, an architecture developed by the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance.
The 11th generation ‘Lan Evo’ (as Initial D connoisseurs refer to it) may share elements with future Renault Sport Meganes. The proposed engine for the next-generation French hot hatch is a turbocharged 2.0-litre mated to a dual-clutch gearbox that drives the front wheels. It’s this drivetrain that the Evo XI could be equipped with, but rather than powering just the front wheels, Mitsubishi’s version will be adapted to make it four-wheel drive. If previous Evos, and even Mitsubishi’s current SUVs, are anything to go by, it’ll be a very trick four-wheel drive system with S-AWC (Super All Wheel Control).
Don’t hold your breath waiting for a new Evo, though. Rob Lindley, managing director of Mitsubishi UK, explained to Car Throttle earlier this year the company was not looking at producing performance cars. “Mitsubishi’s focus is now SUVs, crossover, four-wheel drive, along with alternative fuel technology […] If you try and be in all the different segments of the market and follow trends, like sports cars, it would be difficult to be economically viable.”
The glimmer of hope we have is that platform sharing and inter-brand collaborations do allow cars for enthusiasts to be created. Projects that wouldn’t get off the ground if the costs couldn’t be shared are made possible by using existing engines and platforms. Just look at the new Toyota Supra and its BMW basis.
With Mitsubishi now tied in with Renault, which clearly intends to keep building hot hatches, and Nissan, that surely won’t let the GT-R name die, there may be plenty of resources for it to borrow to make a worthy addition to the Evo dynasty.