Mitsubishi committed to future PHEV development

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

Mitsubishi’s Outlander PHEV is currently the bestselling plug-in hybrid in the UK

The Japanese car maker says it has no plans to release an electric-only SUV range

Mitsubishi says its plug-in hybrid technology is essential to meet increasingly tough CO2 emissions regulations – and the next-generation Outlander PHEV will have an electric-only range of around 60 miles.

The Outlander is currently the bestselling plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) in the UK. While increasingly tough CO2 regulations are pushing several car firms towards pure-battery EV technology, Mitsubishi’s strategy boss, Vincent Cobee, says the limitations of full-electric tech mean PHEVs are key to meeting those requirements.

“Battery EVs have a limitation in terms of range at the moment, and in some countries, that might not be the answer,” said Cobee. He added that the firm would add full-electric models to its range, alongside extending its PHEV powertrain to other models.

“The Outlander PHEV currently has an electric-only range of 31 miles, and we’ll extend that with the next-generation model: the aim is 80-100km [50-62 miles], which will be enough for most people to do the bulk of their journeys purely on electric power and live a largely EV lifestyle, but still be able to do longer trips when needed.”

Cobee reiterated that the firm will not develop a bespoke range of EV-specific models in the future, instead offering battery EV, hybrid and PHEV versions of its models. 

He also ruled out a plug-in hybrid version of the current-generation L200 pick-up, which has just been launched, because the technology is not yet cost-effective or beneficial to commercial vehicles – but he said that was likely to change as the technology developed in the coming years.

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