Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution Could Make a Comeback With Help From Renault
Lancer Evolution vs WRX STi had been as classic a rivalry as Mustang vs Camaro. But, with the departure of the Evo in 2016, there has been a hole in the marketplace and in the hearts of enthusiasts. Reports coming out of Autocar point to a revival of the famed rivalry, with an theoretical Evo XI getting some help from Renault.
While the Evolution name has been rumored to be revived in the form of some sort of SUV or electric vehicle — or both — the Lancer Evolution may yet return in proper super-sedan form. While details are spotty, it is speculated that the engine would come from the next-generation Renault Mégane RS. The current Mégane RS is the front-wheel drive Nürburgring production vehicle record holder, sporting a 296 horsepower and 295 ft-lbs 1.8-liter, 4-cylinder engine. With the next-generation engine anticipated to displace 2.0-liters, it may utilize a bit of electric boosting from a 48V mild-hybrid system to close in on the 341 hp coming from Subaru’s WRX STi S209.
The power is expected to be transmitted through a dual-clutch transmission and Mitsubishi-developed S-AWC four-wheel drive system. While purists may select a manual — if one is made available — the dual-clutch would provide a performance advantage that’s not currently being offered from Subaru.
The underpinnings for the next-generation Lancer Evolution would likely be on the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Common Module Family (CMF) C/D platform. This platform is utilized in the United States under the Nissan Rogue and Infiniti QX50. Both sedan and hatchback versions of the Lancer could be offered, though it is likely that the sedan body-style would be the one utilized for the Evolution XI.
Mitsubishi has been working to reestablish itself in the U.S. and has been seeing steady growth here since 2012. The return of a performance model could be just what it needs to get people to notice the Diamond Star once again, and thus buy their SUVs. After all, that’s where the real money exists.
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- Bryan Raab Davis I actually did use the P of D trope, but it was only gentle chiding, for I love old British cars of every sort.
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- FreedMike Good article! And I salute the author for not using the classic “Lucas - prince of darkness” trope, well earned as it may be. We all know the rap on BL cars, but on the flip side, they’re apparently pretty easy to work on (at least that’s the impression I’ve picked up). On the other hand, check the panel fits on the driver’s and passenger’s doors. Clearly, BL wasn’t much concerned with things like structural integrity when it chopped the roof off a car designed as a coupe.