Mitsubishi has taken a step closer to bringing a plug-in hybrid to market by 2013 with the PX MiEV concept, unveiled at the Tokyo motor show.
The concept is designed to showcase what a mid-size crossover SUV could look like with petrol electric power, and it strongly hints at the look of the next Outlander, which is due within the next three or four years. The production hybrid would go on sale in a number of markets globally, including the UK.
Underneath the car’s relatively simple-looking exterior design, the PX is powered by two electric motors, one mounted on each axle, combined with a 1.6-litre four-cylinder petrol engine.
Like all plug-in hybrids, the PX can be used in an electric-only mode. It has a claimed range of around 30 miles, but petrol power can be called upon for longer trips.
The concept, based on a Japanese-market Outlander, is rumoured to be good for 140mpg. A Mitsubishi insider said this would be easily attainable on a production version. “We will have this tech on a small crossover in the next few years and an Outlander would appear to fit in with that,” said our source.
The PX MiEV’s interior is as minimalist as the exterior and has few of the flourishes you normally expect from concept cars, further proof that Mitsubishi is intent on producing the PX.
The car is not entirely devoid of innovation, though, featuring what Mitsubishi calls a “cocochi- interior”, including anti-bacterial seat fabric. The PX also has heat-reflecting glass and paint in order to minimise the drain on the battery from the air-con system.