Mitsubishi Compact Crossover (2010) first sketch

Published: 29 October 2009

This sketch reveals Mitsubishi’s new compact SUV. The official name is still under wraps for now, so Mitsubishi calls this car its Compact Crossover. European sales start next summer, and it’ll be the first car to receive the company’s new clean-diesel engine.

Haven’t we seen something like this before from Mitsubishi?

We have. Back in 2007 Mitsubishi unveiled the Concept-cX at the Frankfurt motor show, and that show vehicle has inspired this new car. The concept was 4.1m long and 1.75m wide, but the production vehicle has grown slightly to accommodate the latest crash regulations, meaning it’ll be slightly larger than Kia’s Soul. Underpinning it is Mitsubishi’s mid-size global platform.

The Compact Crossover will also be the first Mitsubishi to get the company’s new clean-diesel engine. In the concept the 1.8-litre unit produced 134bhp at 4000rpm and 207lb ft at 2000rpm thanks to a variable geometry turbocharger, and was matched to a particulate filter to make in Euro5 compliant. The production engine is still undergoing final homologation, but expect similar outputs.

There will also be petrol engine options, and as Mitsubishi is about to put an E85-powered version of its Lancer into production in Thailand, some markets could get a flexi-fuel option of the Compact Crossover. It’s all part of Mitsubishi’s plans to make a 'strategic shift from being an SUV-focused nameplate to a manufacturer of environment-friendly passenger cars & crossovers', but a company spokesperson confirmed that it will continue to build the Shogun and L200 for a long time yet. Two- and four-wheel drive variants of the Compact Crossover will be offered.

Sales of the compact SUV start in Japan in February 2010, before the car makes its European debut at the Geneva motor show next March and arrives in dealerships in the summer.

Any other Mitsubishi news?

Beyond the new Compact Crossover, Mitsubishi has revealed its plans for the next six months. Asia is receiving a facelifted version of the Outlander this month, before it goes on sale in North America and Europe in November 2009. Europe will also get a facelifted version of the L200 pick-up next January.

Mitsubishi has also announced its fiscal results for the first half of 2009, and its full-year forecasts. From April through September it posted net sales of ¥573bn (£3.8bn), a decrease of ¥641bn (£4.2bn), or 53% over the same period last year. Mitsubishi also posted an operating loss of ¥32.5bn (£217m) in the same period, down from a profit of ¥57.9bn (£388m), but had predicted net sales of ¥600bn and a loss and ¥35bn. Its global sales were down 158,000 units to 445k, a 26% decrease over the same period last year.

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By Ben Pulman

CAR's editor-at-large, co-ordinator, tallboy