Browse over 9,000 car reviews

2022 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV to join the Evolution? New Toyota RAV4 Hybrid rival to get performance flagship as part of Ralliart return: report

An artist’s impression of the Outlander PHEV Evolution. (Image credit: Best Car Web)

Mitsubishi has confirmed the second-generation Outlander PHEV mid-size SUV will be revealed in Japan’s winter (December to February), but a report claims the new plug-in hybrid model will be topped by an Evolution performance flagship.

While Mitsubishi released two teaser images of the next Outlander PHEV, showing its charging port and specific badging (see below), its Best Car Web that has caused a bigger splash, with it suggesting the model will represent a significant sporty shift for the brand.

According to the Japanese publication, Mitsubishi was planning to resurrect the beloved Evolution sub-brand with a new Outlander PHEV range-topper at October’s Tokyo motor show, although the international event was cancelled in April due to COVID-19.

Best Car Web says the Outlander PHEV Evolution “was supposed to be … a symbolic model”, so it’s not clear if Mitsubishi intended it to a concept or a series-production vehicle, and if its debut will even occur at another time and place.

Either way, the Japanese publication claims the Outlander PHEV Evolution’s “aggressive exterior (is) reminiscent of a rally raid machine”, which “emphasises its strong presence”.

  • 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
  • 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

No other details on the alleged Outlander PHEV Evolution have been released at this time, but there is a chance the hi-po model would’ve actually worn Ralliart badging instead, as Mitsubishi publicly announced plans to revive that particular sub-brand in May.

Of course, time will tell what happens, if anything, but in the meantime, Mitsubishi has promised the upcoming Outlander PHEV will have more power and a larger battery than its predecessor, with it due in Australian showrooms early next year.

For reference, the first-generation Outlander PHEV currently pairs a 2.4-litre naturally aspirated petrol four-cylinder engine with two electric motors for combined outputs of 157kW/332Nm, while its 13.8kWh battery provides 54km of range.

The fourth-generation Outlander upon which the new Toyota RAV4 Hybrid will be based was revealed in February, so you can read all about it in the related story link that’s above.