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Mitsubishi concept previews next Outlander

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By: IOL Motoring Staff

Tokyo, Japan - These renderings are the first official images of the GT-PHEV Concept, which will be the centrepiece of the Mitsubishi stand at next month's Paris Motor Show.

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The GT in its name, according to the Mitsubishi marketing mavens, stands for 'Ground Tourer' referencing its mission to boldly go across vast tracts of wild country on poor or virtually non-existent roads, while cosseting its crew in luxury.

And its chunky proportions, distinctly more sporty than this maker's current SUV offerings, may well preview some of the styling of the next-generation Outlander. The front treatment is intended to evoke a shield, protecting both the car and its occupants, while the strong horizontal lines of the profile underscore its stability and sporty persona.

Inside, a deep horizontal dashboard creates a spacious feel while also acting as a reference for changes in attitude. A high centre console places the driver in a cockpit-like flight deck, with lots of burgundy leather trim to match the colour of the contrasting roof covering.

Three electric motors

The concept - which is apparently a runner - is powered by Mitsubishi's proven plug-in hybrid system, using one electric motor in unit with a combustion engine, generator and transmission on the front axle, and another electric motor for each rear wheel - each designed specifically for this vehicle.

Their combined performance is orchestrated by MMC's Super All-Wheel Control integrated vehicle dynamics control system, giving it remarkable off-road ability without the weight and expense of a bulky transfer case and long prop-shafts.

Connected-car technology

The system gives the concept a pure electric range of up to 120km, and combined hybrid cruising range of more than 1200km, using connected car technology to feed back route, weather and surface condition information to the car as well as data from on-board sensors and cameras to manage fuel and electricity consumption, and provide the best all-wheel control for ambient conditions.

Also on the Mitsubishi stand in Paris will be the eX Concept, a compact SUV powered by a next-generation pure electric system, and the 2017 European-market versions of the Outlander and Outlander plug-in hybrid, also being shown for the first time.

Both Outlander derivatives feature a new centre console and upgraded interior trim, as well as blind-spot warning, and a new front-looking radar/camera system that can detect pedestrians as well as vehicles. The plug-in hybrid also has a new EV priority mode that uses pure electric drive as much as possible.

Motoring.co.za

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