2013 Geneva Motor Show: Mitsubishi previews the Concept GR-HEV

Article by Anita Panait, on February 14, 2013

Mitsubishi Motors’ all-new Outlander PHEV marks the success of being able to apply electric vehicle technology in bigger running machines. Indeed, Mitsubishi Motors was able to perfectly match plug-in hybrid electric vehicle technology to long-haul D-Segment crossovers. But the Japanese carmaker’s efforts to apply electric vehicle technology to larger, tougher and sportier vehicles do not end with the Outlander PHEV.

As a matter of fact, Mitsubishi Motors is developing ways to apply hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) technology to a one-tonne pickup truck. The carmaker proves that it is meeting the challenge by unveiling the Concept GR-HEV – a 4WD Sport Utility HEV Truck designed for people who want to experience both work and leisure and be developed enough to take on either mature or emerging markets.

With the creation of a next “Dual Design” vehicle, Mitsubishi Motors is introducing an exclusive HEV solution, which features a Clean Diesel engine and electric motors. HEV is simpler and more affordable than either EV or PHEV, and is also regarded as best suited to the heavy-duty daily requirements of pickup truck users.

Concept GR-HEV employs Mitsubishi’s full-time 4WD technology, which features a Super All Wheel Control (S-AWC) integrated vehicle dynamics control system driveline that could provide high stability traction and driving performance under all road conditions. Concept GR-HEV was developed with aims to record carbon dioxide emissions of below 149 g/km, which is far better than the segment average.

Ruggedly handsome and supremely accessible, this AWD Sport Utility HEV Truck show car was conceived as a successor to a long heritage of one-tonne Mitsubishi pickups, starting with the first 1978 Mitsubishi L200.

All were successes for their time, and they all stood out with their attractive styling.

The GR-HEV Concept maintains this practice with the addition of immense streamlined bulk while avoiding the blocky, rigged appearance that seems prevalent in the group.

Instead, across its lengthy 5.42 m dual-cab body, MMC Design created a muscled, athletic form, emphasised by crisp character lines, from the headlights and continuing to create a vibrant, sweeping waist line.

Continuing the motif developed first for the contemporary L200, the GR-HEV Concept provides a complete pick-up look that has a long load bed creating visual continuity of the passenger space, simply limited by a graphic J-shutline, serving to support the combined running boards.

Further to the back, this load bed outspreads the sculptured cabin shape, either in the open trapezoid wheel arches (and their irregular flat moulds that suggest movement), in the formed tailgate, or in the helix rear combination lights. With their scattering diamond designed LEDs, they look like precisely cut jewellery.

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