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Yes, Mitsubishi Really Did Just Tease a Delica Van for North America

The cult-favorite van and an off-road SUV have been hinted to debut in North America in the next few years.

byJames Gilboy|
Mitsubishi lineup of future models for North America
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You might not think about Mitsubishi often, but the long-beleaguered make is staging what it hopes will be a comeback here in North America. It's a long shot, I know—but maybe not as long as it sounds. That's because Mitsubishi's next few years will see it launch several new models in the United States, two of which are suggested to be an off-road SUV and its cult-hit Delica van.

These vehicles were teased in the brand's "Momentum 2030" five-year business plan, which included the above preview of Mitsubishi's future North American lineup. Between financial years 2026 and 2030 (or Spring 2025 through Winter 2029), Mitsubishi says it will debut one new or redesigned model for North America annually. They will use the full range of powertrains, from plain combustion engines to hybrids, plug-in hybrids (or PHEVs), and EVs. Mitsubishi will expand to two segments it doesn't currently compete in, and in the U.S. specifically, its lineup "will nearly double from today's four vehicles." That's a very creative way to say "seven cars."

2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV. James Gilboy

Most of the seven vehicles seen in Mitsubishi's teaser are readily identifiable, so we can count them out of the surprises. For starters, the front row is clearly a pair of Outlanders, while the center-right of the back row strongly resembles the Eclipse Cross. The Mirage and Outlander Sport are absent, as both are ancient, and the former is expected to bow out soon. (The latter will presumably follow shortly.) That leaves four other cars, only half of which I can identify.

The top right appears to be the new Xforce crossover, a subcompact mainly sold in Southeast Asia. Dead-center is where things get exciting, because it's clearly the D:X concept—Mitsubishi's preview of the next-gen Delica. Decades-old examples of this tightly packaged, off-roadable van have developed a cult following in the U.S. that imports Japanese models for their combination of ruggedness and quaintness. I think there's an untapped market for them, and Mitsubishi evidently agrees.

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Things stay interesting when looking to the top left, which shows the outline of a concept SUV we haven't yet seen. Some details clear up what it's supposed to be, though: It has short overhangs, a short wheelbase, a boxy body, and significant ground clearance. It resembles a blend of the MI-Tech concept and the Triton pickup without a bed, though the tires look a bit small for it to be a Jeep Wrangler challenger. Maybe it's more along the lines of the Ford Bronco Sport or Subaru Crosstrek Wilderness—it certainly looks to be about the size of the Xforce.

Lastly, we have the unknown vehicle to the center-left in the back row. I'll be honest, I'm at a loss as to what this is. It seems to be some kind of small crossover, but how it fits alongside the rest of the compact and subcompact SUVs seen here is unclear. Whatever it is, it might be a re-engineered Nissan, as Mitsubishi says "some vehicles will be produced locally utilizing [Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi] Alliance assets." That doesn't mean they'll be as underwhelming as the Ariya though, as I'm a fan of the Rogue-based Outlander.

Unknown future Mitsubishi models that could be sold in the United States. Mitsubishi Motors NA

By this point, you're probably still lamenting the obvious lack of a Lancer Evolution successor in these photos. I wouldn't be too worried, Mitsubishi is actually fighting pressure from investors to rush the Evo back into the market. Besides, the teaser image shows only six models when North America as a whole is basically confirmed to be getting seven. If there's no Evo waiting in the wings, the mystery vehicle could be a potential hybrid pickup.

Still, let's just hope that the Delica and little off-roader won't be for Canada or Mexico only—that'd be a little too much to bear.

Got a tip or question for the author? You can reach them here: james@thedrive.com

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