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Mitsubishi Triton will underpin next Nissan Navara, Mercedes X-Class?

The current-generation Mitsubishi Triton has only just been refreshed, but the future looks bright for the Japanese ute.

The next-generation Mitsubishi Triton may still be years away, but there are already details leaking out about what to expect.

It has been confirmed by the Japanese company’s chief operating officer, Trevor Mann, that the next-generation Triton ute will also form the basis for the next Nissan Navara and Renault Alaskan.

The next-generation Triton ute will also form the basis for the next Nissan Navara. The next-generation Triton ute will also form the basis for the next Nissan Navara.

Mr Mann told industry journal Automotive News that the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance has made the decision that Mitsubishi offers the best depth of knowledge and hardware for the next-gen versions of each of the brand’s pick-up trucks to be based on.

"Shortly after the Alliance, we did a detailed technical study between [Mitsubishi and Nissan], and we found that Mitsubishi had many advantages over the Nissan platform," Mr Mann is quoted as saying. 

The announcement flies in the face of public statements made to the contrary by Nissan execs a few months ago, when it was suggested Mitsubishi had jumped the gun by asserting it would take the lead on development of the next-generation utes.

The current-generation Triton architecture underpins that particular pick-up model, as well as the Pajero Sport off-road SUV. By contrast, Nissan’s current-generation Navara’s underpinnings are spread quite a bit further, being found beneath the Terra SUV from the same brand, plus the Renault Alaskan pick-up and the Mercedes-Benz X-Class ute. 

It’s too early to say what that could mean for the development of a second-generation version of the Mercedes-Benz X-Class - whether the brand will continue to form part of a commercial vehicle alliance with is unclear.  The next-generation version of the Triton is likely more than four years away.

It’s too early to say what that could mean for the development of a second-generation version of the Mercedes-Benz X-Class. It’s too early to say what that could mean for the development of a second-generation version of the Mercedes-Benz X-Class.

Existing alliance products produced for Renault-Nissan-Mercedes have fallen by the wayside - the Infiniti Q30/Mercedes A-Class mingling only lasted one life cycle, while the Renault Twingo/Smart alliance - the latter brand may be culled entirely within weeks.

That said, commercial vehicle alliances are stronger in general - Renault-Mercedes has an existing agreement on small vans, producing the Kangoo/Citan as a result. That hasn’t been replicated in larger vans, though - Mercedes went on its own for the Vito and Sprinter

Will there be an X-Class based on a Triton? Tell us your thoughts in the comments section below.