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Mitsubishi Might Be Bringing Back The Lancer and Montero According To Report

by | June 24, 2024

Mitsubishi is refocusing its EV efforts and according to a new report, it appears that two more of its iconic nameplates might make a return and play a key role in the company’s EV plans.

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An off-road, all-electric Mitsubishi people-mover apparently is on the docket.

Mitsubishi may be focusing the bulk of its efforts on preparing for its entry into the EV market these days but the company is not shying away from using iconic nameplates to help it reach out to more buyers. The company revived the Eclipse moniker in 2017 for the Eclipse Cross SUV. And while the Eclipse Cross is a far cry from the sports cars that the brand once sold, it has proven to be a consistent seller for Mitsubishi’s dealerships.

A new batch of recently unearthed patent filings with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) suggests that the company is interested in bringing the Lancer and the Montero back into action in what could be a potent one-two punch in the EV segment.

Montero and Lancer Sportback are potent throwbacks

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A revived Lancer and Montero would allow Mitsubishi to leverage more iconic monikers for its future EV models.

The new patent filings focus on the Montero and Lancer Sportback monikers. The Montero was last seen in the U.S. in 2006 and was an axed SUV that the company sold in our market. The patent filing for the Montero focuses on “automobiles” as well as a variety of other uses. This broad coverage indicates that the company is exploring ways that it could bring the Montero back to our market. The appearance of the Montero would help fill a hole in the company’s utility lineup with the Eclipse Cross and the Outlander lineup being the only two utility models that it currently has for sale.

In addition to the patents on the Montero, the company also filed a second round of patents for the “Lancer Sportback.” These patents cover the same categories as the Montero’s but Mitsubishi has had a rougher time getting approval from the USPTO with the agency rejecting a prior attempt by the company to get its filing approved for the moniker before Mitsubishi launched an appeal. The Lancer Sportback was the hatchback version of the Lancer sedan which went out of production in 2010. Unlike the Montero, the Lancer had a strong consumer following when it was in production with the model having a heated rivalry with the Subaru Impreza especially in the performance car sector. This loyalty might encourage the company to try different marketing and strategic plans with a potential Lancer model including the possibility of making the Sportback a non-SUV model to help give the company an alternative to some EV buyers who don’t want an SUV to get access to full electrification.

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New filings support evidence of a broader plan

Look for Mitsubishi to continue to explore bringing back more names from the past as the company begins the process of fleshing out its future EV lineup.

These new patent filings follow on the heels of a flurry of other rumors suggesting Mitsubishi is planning an aggressive assault on the EV market. In addition to the potential returns of the Montero and the Lancer, the company is also reportedly developing an EV pickup for the U.S. market while the D:X Concept might spawn a production model that would also be slated for the U.S. with the Delcia moniker potentially being used for it.

Look for more information to be revealed soon with the company planning to roll out the first wave of its new production models sometime in late 2025 where they will appear as early 2026 models. It’s not known what models will be given the task of being in the first wave, but we suspect the company will use a moniker that is still familiar to buyers and that could put the Lancer Sportback in a favorable position to help maximize the success of a potential spearhead model.



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