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Mitsubishi Teases Plug-In Hybrid SUV Concept Ahead of 2019 Tokyo Motor Show

Mitsubishi PHEV Concept

Mitsubishi released an image of part of an upcoming concept vehicle — a small SUV that uses an electric four-wheel-drive and “downsized” plug-in hybrid drivetrain to save weight.

Or, as Mitsubishi efficiently puts it: “The small electric SUV concept car pulls together the company’s electrification and all-wheel-drive control expertise and technologies. Under the concept of ‘An electric SUV that delivers unparalleled driving pleasure and confidence over all terrain in light and wind,’ [Mitsubishi] will propose new values which combine SUV, PHEV and 4WD: The car will have a downsized, lower-weight plug-in hybrid EV drivetrain, as well as an electric 4WD system.”

Related: Solid Safety Ratings Make 2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross a Little More Likeable

It doesn’t seem like this design shares much with the last Mitsubishi concept SUV we saw, the Engelberg Tourer that appeared in the 2019 Geneva International Motor Show and had a traditional three-box shape. As for this image …  is it the rear end of the concept? That looks like a taillight in the lower right corner, right?

The visible pillars look to have carbon fiber on at least the exterior — ostensibly for weight savings — and those circular objects may be speakers, designed to signify fun for a younger demographic. If this is the exterior, it looks like occupants might sit in semi-isolated pods.

Some editors wondered if the toothed discs are cupholders in the concept’s center console, which would be a bizarre item to tease. Others suggested those were cooling fans for the electric vehicle’s batteries.

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The 2019 Tokyo Motor Show is open to the public beginning Oct. 24, so we’ll hopefully know more about this Mitsubishi closer to the show.

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