Mitsubishi’s current small hatchback offering, the Mirage, has fallen quite short of the mark in many respects, but the Japanese carmaker looks set to take advantage of its newfound access to the Nissan-Renault parts bin to raise its hatch game.
According to Auto Express, Mitsubishi’s next compact hatchback, which is set to replace the Mirage in Europe and other markets, will be based on the next-generation Renault Clio.
Mitsubishi’s corporate vice president Vincent Cobee admitted to the UK publication that it would use Renault and Nissan platforms in the small car sector as the margins are smaller and don’t warrant developing a unique platform.
This would make the Clio platform the most likely candidate for a compact hatchback, given that Nissan’s new-generation Micra is also based on the Clio platform. An electric version of the new B-segment Mitsubishi is also said to be in the pipeline.
The Mitsubishi would have its own unique styling, however, likely adopting a version of the ‘Shield’ frontal design and wedge-shaped side window design seen in the firm’s latest batch of concept cars.
It also seems logical that Mitsubishi would use alliance platforms for many of its crossover and SUV models as this would significantly cut development costs.
Hence we wouldn’t be surprised to see a new-generation ASX based on the Nissan Qashqai and an outlander with X-Trail genes at some point in the future.
Even the bakkie range is not immune to collaboration. Following Nissan’s purchase of a 34 percent controlling stake in Mitsubishi late last year, Nissan CEO Hiroto Saikawa admitted that the firms might also jointly-develop pick-up trucks, particularly for Asian markets, although it’s likely that Nissan would also make use of Mitsubishi’s expertise here.