Former Mitsubishi Evo has evolved into an e-Evolution Concept

Article by Christian A., on October 27, 2017

It looks like Mitsubishi will be resurrecting the Evolution badge or “Evo,” as the Japanese carmaker is set to unveil a new study -- the e-Evolution Concept – at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show in Japan. However, the concept bearing the Evolution name isn't a sports sedan, but an all-electric performance sports utility vehicle.

The Evolution had been the official designation for the sporty version of the Mitsubishi Lancer compact sedan. The Lancer Evolution lasted only until the tenth generation, with production now totally ceased. But as early as March 2014, Mitsubishi issued a press release saying that while the Evolution, a high-performance four-wheel drive sedan, won't have a successor, the carmaker would explore the possibilities of creating high-performance models with electric vehicle technology. Mitsubishi did explore, and the result is the new Mitsubishi e-Evolution Concept.

According to Mitsubishi, the e-Evolution Concept is a technical prototype that combines the strengths of an SUV and an EV, as well as the ability to integrate new systems to allow for a connected mobility customer experience. The carmaker added that the e-Evolution Concept embodies the brand’s new strategic directions under its "Drive your Ambition" strategy.

The new e-Evolution Concept demonstrates the carmaker’s new design philosophy, which it named "Robust & Ingenious." Under this new design philosophy, future Mitsubishi vehicles will not just be sincere, tough and functional, but they will also be stylish, smart, resourceful and technologically advanced.

As designed, the e-Evolution Concept offers superior 4WD control and the agility of high-performance cross-country tourer. Up front, the study features a fresh take on the brand’s Dynamic Shield design. The black grille is covered by glass, thereby hinting at its nature as a high performance EV. The glass also covers the study’s cameras and sensors, as indicated by the blue lines. Just below the headlamps are large air intakes that send cooling air to the electric brake calipers.

When viewed from the sides, the e-Evolution Concept reveals a slanted front windshield, short overhangs, high ground clearance, strong shoulders and narrow hips, as made possible by the study’s electric powertrain. The side profile also reveals large tires as well as bars running the full length of the roof. On the rear, the e-Evolution Concept features a large hexagon shape inspired by the spare tire cover of the iconic Mitsubishi Pajero.

Thanks to the fact that it has no internal combustion engine, the e-Evolution Concept is able to offer a spacious interior. It comes with a seemingly floating instrument panel with the carmaker’s hallmark horizontal styling, which makes it easier for the driver to sense the state of the vehicle while driving. The dashboard features a large full-width flat screen as flanked by two smaller screens.

The Mitsubishi e-Evolution Concept is powered by three high-torque, high-performance electric motors, which source its energy from a high-capacity battery system located under the floor mid-ship of the study. This configuration gives the e-Evolution Concept a low center of gravity for a stable drive. This stability is complemented by a 4WD system, which benefits from three electric motors. An electric motor drives the front wheels while the two motors manage the rear wheels. The vehicle makes use of Super All-Wheel Control (S-AWC) vehicle dynamic control system for traction performance as well as brakes with electric calipers for supreme stopping power.

Mitsubishi has fitted the e-Evolution Concept with an Artificial Intelligence (AI) system that employs an array of sensors to augment the driver in controlling the vehicle while enhancing his or her driving experience and expertise.

Press Release

Mitsubishi Motors Debuts the MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT The embodiment of MMC's new

At the 45th Tokyo Motor Show, which opens to the public on October 27, 2017, Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) will celebrate the world debut of the MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT. The all-electric high performance SUV embodies MMC's new brand strategy under the new "Drive your Ambition" global tagline, a strategy that reflects an adventurous and progressive mindset for inspirational design and product.

The MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT is a technical prototype to illustrate the strategic directions of a renewed MMC brand that incorporates the strengths of SUV, EV, and the ability to integrate new systems for a connected mobility customer experience.

Under this new ethos, MMC will expand its customer base, leveraging its strong pedigree of driving performance and reliability with breakthrough SUVs and crossovers. As a first-mover in electric vehicles, MMC will expand and accelerate its EV deployment. MMC will push the technological envelope with a tightly integrated system of AI, connectivity, on-board and cloud computing.

"Robust & Ingenious": The design philosophy of Mitsubishi Motors
MMC has adopted a design philosophy under the title "Robust & Ingenious."

"We aim to provide vehicles that fulfill our customers' desires through outstanding design, combined with the power, authenticity and carefully-considered functionality Mitsubishi Motors is known for," said MMC Head of Global Design Tsunehiro Kunimoto.

Robust & ingenious, the design language of the MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT, is a study in contrasts. MMC vehicles of the future are meant to be sincere, tough, and functional. At the same time, they will be clever, resourceful, style-setting and technologically advanced.

MMC has a long and strong heritage. Think of "Mitsubishi Motors," and proven off-road performance, along with superior 4WD control come to mind. Now, the banner of superior, high-performance 4WD control is carried forward by the MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT. The design expresses the readiness to grip the ground with all four-wheels, and the agility of a high performance cross-country tourer.

The front face design of the MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT is a fresh take on MMC's archetypal DYNAMIC SHIELD design. The black grille is shielded under glass, a subtle hint that this car is a high performance electric vehicle. Protected under the glass, and accentuated by blue lines for emphasis, sit cameras and sensors. Large air intakes are located beneath the headlamps, ready to cool the electric brake calipers. Adding to the vehicle's excellent aerodynamics, the drawn-in air passes jet tailfins on the C-pillars before exiting on either side of the rear bumper.

A sharply slanted front windshield and short overhangs give the MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT a unique side profile that has not been possible before the arrival of electric propulsion. High ground clearance, short overhangs, strong shoulders, and narrow hips project nimbleness and agility. Muscular tires that protrude at the four corners communicate powerful 4WD torque. Bars running from front to rear along either side of the roof enhance the vehicle's muscular attitude.

The large hexagon shape at the rear draws inspiration from the spare tire cover of the quintessential SUV, the legendary Mitsubishi Pajero, a hallmark of off-road driving, and one of the most iconic chapters of MMC's heritage.

Inside, the cockpit of the MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT shows that its designers suddenly had the freedom to go beyond the traditional firewall. The MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT is powered by three torqueful electric motors, and the absence of a big internal combustion engine under the hood gave designers the space to realize a radically novel cockpit. Its instrument panel appears to float in front of the driver. It is a MMC vehicle, and the instrument panel adopts MMC's trademark horizontal styling, with the focus on information above the axis and on operation below. Acting like a level in an electronic viewfinder, the horizontal instrument panel makes it easier to sense the state of the vehicle during driving – form follows function well down the road.

A large flat screen spans the full width of the dashboard. It displays outside conditions, navigation and coaching information. The large screen is flanked by two smaller screens, showing images from front and rear cameras. Full-glass windows provide near unobstructed 360-degree visibility, for a feeling more akin to a jet fighter than a car.

The technologies of the MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT
EV system: The MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT uses high-torque, high-performance electric motors, fed by a high-capacity battery system to deliver the smooth and powerfully responsive performance that distinguishes EVs from ICE-powered vehicles. The drive battery is located under the floor mid-ship of the vehicle, providing a low center of gravity for the utmost driving stability.

4WD system: For exceptional driving performance, the triple motor 4WD system employs a single motor to drive the front wheels, complemented by a new Dual Motor Active Yaw Control (AYC) system that couples two rear motors through an electronically controlled torque-vectoring AYC unit. All of this is integrated into MMC's unique Super All-Wheel Control (S-AWC) vehicle dynamic control system. Cornering performance and traction performance are improved. The brakes of the MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT responsively and precisely control the driving forces with the help of electric calipers that supersede the conventional hydraulic caliper. The effects of the system can be felt and appreciated immediately, even at low speeds when G-forces are low. Whether driving around town, on expressways, or winding roads, the fully electric vehicle always provides crisp and nimble handling that faithfully mirrors driver intent.
AI system: The brain of the MITSUBISHI e-EVOLUTION CONCEPT is an Artificial Intelligence (AI) system that augments the driver's capabilities. An array of sensors allows the AI system to instantly read changes in road and traffic conditions, as well as the driver's intent. Seamlessly coordinating driver intent with vehicle performance, the system supports drivers of all abilities. By making it easier and safer to control the vehicle, the motoring experience is brought to a new level. A special coaching function allows the AI system to transfer knowledge to the driver, and to unobtrusively enhance the driving expertise. After building a picture of the driver's skill level, the system constructs a training program that provides advice through voice dialogue and a large dashboard display. As a result, drivers of all abilities quickly experience a vehicle that behaves the way they want it, and soon they find themselves enjoying the driving experience to an even greater degree.

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