Next-gen Mitsubishi Lancer Evo could go hybrid

Article by Christian Andrei, on August 29, 2010

Mitsubishi has a renewed focus on going green and this will be evident in its top-performing model the next-generation Lancer Evolution. The next-generation Evo XI is reported to have a plug-in hybrid drivetrain.

In a Motor Trend report, Mitsubishi confirmed the plan to go green for its next-generation Evolution model, which will be based on the same platform as the PX-MiEV plug-in hybrid concept.

The Evolution XI will also feature an electric motor derived from the i-MiEV and a high-output 2.0L MIVEC turbo four-cylinder. Unlike the typical hybrid model, the Evo XI's electric motor will be used exclusively for driving the car's front wheels.

For extra power, the 2.0L gas engine, which is able to generate 320hp, will fire up and will provide propulsion to the rear wheels. This means that for most driving conditions, the Evo XI will be an electrically driven front-driver.

The Evo XI will be powered by a plug-in drivetrain and lithium-ion batteries, which give it an all-electric range of several miles.

The result, of course, is that overall fuel economy is given a boost. Just because it's meant to be environmentally friendly doesn't mean that its standards are set low.

In fact, the Evo XI is expected to be able to accelerate from zero to 60mph in 4.5 seconds, with the car's electric motor acting as a secondary and smoother turbo.

Because electric motors make all their torque from 0 rpm, the Evo XI will not have any turbo lag. Expect the Lancer Evolution XI to arrive in Mitsubishi showrooms in 2013 yet as the carmaker is still working on a number of other technologies, including Active Steering and Roll Control Suspension.

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