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Mitsubishi Ralliart returns! New Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV concept signals rebirth of Japanese performance sub-brand with huge plug-in hybrid power

The Vision Ralliart Concept is a higher-performance Outlander PHEV by another name.

Mitsubishi’s promised performance comeback just got serious with the proper return of its Ralliart sub-brand, by way of a new concept based on the soon-to-be-launched new-generation Outlander PHEV.

Yep, the Ralliart badge has found its way onto a mid-size SUV, having previously been used by the now-discontinued Lancer small car. But in another sign of the times, it’s also now been applied to a plug-in hybrid, instead of a traditional internal-combustion engine.

Needless to say, Ralliart is back, but just not as we know it. That said, the so-called Vision Ralliart Concept stays true to its origins by taking a regular Mitsubishi model to the next level.

Now, Mitsubishi is yet to release the Vision Ralliart Concept’s full technical details, so we don’t know how potent its powertrain is, but the Japanese brand promises it has a “higher motor output” and, therefore, “elevated acceleration”.

For reference, the standard Outlander PHEV combines a 98kW/195Nm 2.4-litre naturally aspirated petrol four-cylinder engine with front- and rear-mounted electric motors that produce 85kW/255Nm and 100kW/195Nm, respectively, and enable all-wheel drive.

While the basic Outlander PHEV has a 20kWh battery that provides 87km of WLTC-certified driving range, the Vision Ralliart Concept has “enhanced battery capacity”, according to Mitsubishi, possibly for longer distances in between charges.

That said, the reveal of the Vision Ralliart Concept’s exterior should be enough to whet most appetites, with 22-inch alloy wheel wheels confirmed alongside large brake discs that’re gripped by six-piston callipers.

But more to the point, the murdered-out Vision Ralliart Concept makes its presence felt with its muscular styling, starting with the front’s chunky new bumper, which has unique design flourishes.

And then there’s the Vision Ralliart Concept’s (very) swollen fender flares, prominent side skirts and massive rear diffuser element, which has the same mesh inserts as the opposite end.

So, when will the production version of the Vision Ralliart Concept be unveiled and released? Well, Mitsubishi says customer feedback on the show car will be used in the “future development” of models. Stay tuned.