Mitsubishi is a big corporation, but not a big automaker, at least in North America. We have details regarding their lineup of new vehicles for 2024, andf ans of the old Lancer might be surprised to learn that an Outlander PHEV Ralliart model will debut next year.
We knew they planned to make Ralliart SUV ever since the Tokyo Auto Salon in 2022, where they showed a concept. However, we now have confirmation from the Japanese scoop website Best Car Web, which claims the launch will happen soon.
Details are a little scarce, but we do have a pretty good idea of what the Outlander Ralliart will look like. The plug-in hybrid version of the SUV is the one that will receive a full body kit, modified suspension, and sportier wheels. Performance improvements are also expected, although the model may not be available outside of Japan.
The first Ralliart PHEV
The powertrain will still be based around a 2.4-liter four-cylinder hybrid. However, total output is said to increase to about 215kW, which is around 290 hp. For reference, the 2023 Outlander PHEV is rated in the US of A at 248 hp and 332 lb-ft.
The power increase doesn’t sound plausible for a 2.4-liter. But actually, the Outlander PHEV is more like an EV. There are two electric motors, one at the front and another at the back, with the 2.4L mainly working as a generator. Mitsubishi will probably tune the way the motors work together, allowing them to make maximum power for short bursts in the Ralliart.
As you can see from this rendering generated by Best Car, the Outlander Ralliart will also feature an aggressive body kit. This will include a front chin spoiler, fender flares, side skirts, and a diffuser. The grille will also be modified, and you can bet they will sprinkle Ralliart badges throughout.
Established in the 1980s, the Ralliart division created various motorsport programs including the famous entries into the Dakar Rally and World Rally Championship. As a result, Ralliart-badged road cars were also launched.
Mitsubishi was basically jealous of Subaru’s sales success with the WRX and wanted its own mid-grade model. We still remember the 2009 Lancer Ralliart, which sold for about $27,000 and offered you 237 horsepower from a 2.0-liter turbo. It had softer suspension than an EVO X, but came with an automated manual as standard.
There were other models, but they’re largely forgotten. Europeans brought the Ralliart as a “Sportback” essentially a short wagon version of the Lancer. They also made the Colt Ralliart, a boxy little hot hatch.
The main rival of the Outlander Ralliart will be, unsurprisingly, a Subaru. There’s a model in Japan called the Forester STI Sport, which gets the body kit and chassis tuning, but not an engine worthy of the STI badge.