Mitsubishi’s Global Small concept car, the e-compact, will next year spawn a production supermini sized between a city car and the company’s outgoing Colt.

The Thai-built, 3.74-metre-long car will be sold in all of Mitsubishi’s markets with only minor regional changes.

Mitsubishi’s global product director, Gayu Eusegi, told Autocar that differences will be limited to engine calibration to meet differing emissions regulations, and details such as “colours and interior fabrics”.

See pics of Mitsubishi's new e-compact

That’s a bolder stance even than Nissan has taken with its new Micra, which has been poorly received in developed markets, despite larger regional differences.

The e-compact is part of Mitsubishi’s drive to lower the emissions of its range of vehicles. The company intends to cut the CO2 output of its cars by 50 per cent in time for 2020, and will introduce eight full-electric or petrol-electric hybrids by 2015. A full-electric e-compact will be available.

Other e-compact derivatives will have 1.0 or 1.2-litre petrol engines with stop-start and part-time alternators.

Matt Prior

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