Skip to main content

Mitsubishi’s Montero is coming back the U.S. and it’s bringing some big batteries

There are a lot of people who have fond memories of the last Mitsubishi Montero. In fact, there are a lot of people still driving their Montero everyday, even though the last new one came to the United States in 2006. But this traditional rugged SUV might be making a comeback in North America in a new much more advanced guise.

The next generation likely to come to the U.S. is not just going to be the first redesign in more than 14 years; it will also be sold as a plug-in hybrid. Mitsubishi CEO Osamu Masuko told AutoNews that the car should be out before the end of the decade, but refused to offer any more details than that.

The Montero is known as the Pajero in most of the rest of the world, and a slight redesign of the old generation is still on sale in many countries.  

The reason for the long delay likely has a lot to do with the difficult restructuring period the company has been through, as it tries to bounce back from years of losses. During Masuko’s tenure the company focused on producing more small and efficient cars like the i-MiEV. This strategy has been a success elsewhere but left the company doing extremely poorly in the United States.

A new Montero could do a lot to turn that around, especially if the car ends up being anything like the GC-PHEV that debuted at the Tokyo Motor Show earlier this year. The concept features a hybrid drivetrain, as well as aggressive angular styling, which is a fresh take on the somewhat outdated looks of the last generation of Montero.

For all of Mitsubishi’s focus on the tech in the new midsized SUV, the company does want to retain its commitment to the off-road performance that has long been a hallmark of the Montero. To accomplish this, the car should feature the new S-AWC – or Super All Wheel Control system – that combines all-wheel drive with, stability and traction control.

Masuko believes that the new Montero, along with a brand new Mirage and Lancer, can help re-establish Mitsubishi’s presence in the United States. While he said that he did not think that it would be likely that the company could regain its mid 2000s sales peak, he said that the company had no plans to close its U.S. facilities and expected to be back at 150,000 annual sales by the end of the decade.

I hope that’s the case, because, while the Mitsubishi lineup has been pretty grim for some time, I would hate to see another Japanese automaker go the way of Suzuki and withdraw entirely from the U.S. Market.

Editors' Recommendations

Peter Braun
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Peter is a freelance contributor to Digital Trends and almost a lawyer. He has loved thinking, writing and talking about cars…
Nissan teams up with EVgo to provide free charging of Leaf vehicles in U.S.
2019 nissan leaf plus review 11

Nissan and EVgo have announced that they are providing new Nissan Leaf owners and lessees access to EVgo's U.S. charging network through a new program, called Nissan Energy Perks by EVgo. Nissan is hoping that the new program will encourage more U.S.-based drivers to switch over to an electric vehicle. Through the program, Nissan will provide $250 in charging credits to EVgo's 750 public charging station locations with more than 1,200 fast chargers. The program is for new or lease purchases of the Leaf or Leaf Plus made either on or after November 1, 2019.

"Nissan is a longtime leader in electric vehicles and this new partnership with EVgo will give Nissan Leaf owners confidence powered by tens of thousands of chargers across America," said Aditya Jairaj, director of EV sales and marketing for Nissan North America. "Convenient access to public chargers can be incredibly helpful for Leaf owners in their day-to-day lives."

Read more
U.S. automakers were leading targets of hackers in 2018, FBI says
the castaway adds a chromium powered second screen to your smartphone in car

In today's connected world, we take great care to protect ourselves from hackers and other threats to our cybersecurity. We protect our computers and our smartphones, but have you thought about your vehicle? The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) issued a report to select private companies saying that automakers were the leading targets for hackers in 2018.

A report by CNN, which obtained a copy from the FBI, states that "the automotive industry likely will face a wide range of cyber threats and malicious activity in the near future as the vast amount of data collected by Internet-connected vehicles and autonomous vehicles become a highly valued target for nation-state and financially motivated actors." CNN further reported that an FBI spokesperson would not comment on details in the report, but noted that "in furtherance of public-private partnerships, the FBI routinely advises private industry of various cyber threat indicators observed during the course of our investigations."

Read more
2020 Karma Revero GTS adds performance to go with its sleek looks
2020 karma revero gts plug in hybrid 2019 los angeles auto show

Previous

Next

Read more