The 2015 Chicago Auto Show previews are officially coming in now, folks. After the teaser for a facelifted Honda Pilot, Mitsubishi has given us a teaser for a new SUV of their own. From the look of it, it’s larger than either of their current Outlander crossovers, and the Japanese automaker lauds it as “the return of a legend.”
What could it be?
A revived US-spec Mitsubishi Montero, which was axed from the Mitsubishi’s US lineup in 2005 in order for them to focus marketing their smaller crossover offers. However, the Montero continues to be sold in other markets as the Pajero. Even in other markets, though, the now-fourth-generation Pajero just hasn’t had much traction in the past few years. Mitsubishi aims to change that with the next-generation model, which they previously told us to expect in 2018.
So, if the new Montero isn’t coming until 2018, what are we going to see at Chicago?
2013 Mitsubishi GC-PHEV Concept premiere
If you have a particularly long memory, you may remember Mitsubishi’s GC-PHEV Concept hybrid all the way back from the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show. A little more than one year later, we believe they’re bringing the next iteration of that concept to the US. Chances are it will be a lot more realistic, if not fully production ready.
Another version of the Mitsubishi GC-PHEV Concept
That being said, Mitsubishi hasn’t strictly specified that this new debut is anything but a carbon copy of the Tokyo model from 2013. It’s perfectly possible that we’ll just get a recolored model, or maybe a GC-PHEV Sport Concept or something like that. We just don’t know right now.
What we do know is that Mitsubishi will definitely offer a plug-in Montero/Pajero at some point, and that it will definitely be available in the US.
Current Mitsubishi Pajero
The best case scenario – the one we’re secretly crossing our fingers for – would be that Mitsubishi gives us a production-ready 2016 Mitsubishi Montero that’s also the next-generation model. Unfortunately, we probably won’t know for sure until the second week in February when ‘the legend’ returns!
Japanese Car Auction Find – 2010 Pajero Mini
This is a really cool follow-up auction find to today’s Chicago Auto Show teaser. It’s a 2010 Pajero Mini in surprisingly good shape.
The Pajero Mini was released in 1994 as a way for Mitsubishi to enter the Japanese Kei car segment using the popular Pajero name. However, the mechanics of the two cars are totally unrelated. The Pajero Mini was actually built on the platform of the Mitsubishi Minica until the Minica was axed in 2011. The Pajero Mini ceased production the following year.
Even though it’s no longer manufactured, the mini-SUV actually had a very successful run. In fact, in 2008 Nissan paid the smaller automaker to produce an OEM version that they went on to sell as the Nissan Kix.
Today’s auction find is a 2010 model, so it would have been one of the final versions of the car. All in all, it’s a fairly basic compact SUV, but a reliable one. The turbocharged 660cc four-cylinder isn’t too shabby too drive either. Get more details below this car’s auction sheet:
“Grade 4.5, interior B, exterior condition B, first registered January 2010, Pajero Mini model, aftermarket stereo, AC, FAT, power steering, power windows, original AWs, airbag, first time in auction, stone chips in front windscreen, interior grime, marks as per map”