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2015 Pajero could get Outlander PHEV plug-in hybrid system

“The Pajero is our flagship,” Mitsubishi Motors head of product and strategy development, Ryugo Nakao.   And soon it will be offered in a plug-in hybrid version.

The Pajero is a large SUV with world wide recognition similar to the Toyota Land Cruiser. It hasn’t been available in North America since 2006, but the redesigned 2015 Pajero may make a re-entry into the US.

At the 2013 Geneva Motor Show, Nakao said the Outlander PHEV’s plug-in hybrid system could be featured in the next generation Pajero and if it is, that would satisfy US customer’s urge for a large SUV that isn’t fuel thirsty.

There is no firm timeline for the next generation timeline, but media outlets seem to think 2015 is likely. Nakao stated the current Pajero must go on for at least 2 or 3 more years – we’re not sure why, but that’s what he said.

Nakao suggest a PHEV of the Pajero would slash consumption and emissions, while simultaneously increasing the performance of the Pajero.

Officially, Nakao only says “Plug-in hybrid is an option,” but the instant success of the Outlander PHEV in Japan, could influence the automaker’s decision when it comes time to pick powertrains for the 2015 Pajero. Japan has around 30,000 orders for the Outlander PHEV.

As Nakao stressed, the Pajero will always be a go-anywhere SUV, so even if it gets the PHEV system, it will remain 4wd capable.