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Geneva: Mitsubishi plots PHEV plans with Engelberg

Concept shows electric direction after success of Outlander PHEV.

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Taking the award for most laughed-at name at this week’s Geneva motor show is the Mitsubishi Engelberg Tourer – but this concept is an important car for the Japanese brand.

Named after a Swiss ski resort, the Engelberg previews where Mitsubishi is taking its plug-in hybrid ambitions after achieving massive success with its Outlander PHEV.

The concept uses a next-generation plug-in hybrid powertrain, which mates a 2.4-litre naturally-aspirated petrol engine to an electric motor on each axle. The car’s 20kWh battery pack allows it to travel for up to 44 miles on electricity alone, and the system’s full range is said to be more than 400 miles.

Mitsubishi is currently releasing few technical details but it is likely that the Engelberg Tourer’s powertrain follows the template set down by the Outlander PHEV. That would mean that at low speeds the engine only generates electricity to allow the electric motors to provide motion. Then, at higher speeds, a single-speed transmission would link the engine directly to the driveshaft, allowing for more efficient motorway cruising.

Family look

The Engelberg Tourer’s styling is an evolution of the brand’s latest family ‘face’, seen on the recently-updated ASX and L200 pick-up. It comprises a large grille with stepped horizontal bars and cinched-in chrome elements at the sides – with the headlights placed separately and lower down the car’s front.

Fun ‘lifestyle’ touches include a built-in roof-box, which opens and closes electronically and features LED foglamps along its front edge. Though the Engelberg Tourer is just a concept for now, elements of its styling and tech are likely to reach production.

Alongside the Engelberg Tourer, Mitsubishi also previewed its vision for how electric cars will be charged. The system, called the Dendo Drive House, uses a bi-directional charger which can either top up the car’s battery, or in times of high demand use the generated electricity as a power source or to sell it back to the National Grid. Solar panels and a large ‘home’ battery are also part of the technology.

Mitsubishi Engelberg The Car Expert

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Andrew Charman
Andrew Charman
Andrew is a road test editor for The Car Expert. He is a member of the Guild of Motoring Writers, and has been testing and writing about new cars for more than 20 years. Today he is well known to senior personnel at the major car manufacturers and attends many new model launches each year.