Mitsubishi is the latest Japanese automaker to accelerate its electrification strategy as demand for electric vehicles continues climbing at a record rate.
The company revealed a new business plan Friday, “Challenge 2025,” that involves four new EVs, including an electric pickup truck.
Mitsubishi unveils new electric strategy and spending plan
Despite being an early EV pioneer, launching its iMiEV electric kei car on World Environment Day in 2009, eventually making its way to the US as the Mitsubishi, the Japanese automaker currently has no purely electric vehicles in its North American or European lineup.
Mitsubishi currently offers the Outlander PHEV, but with new fully electric vehicles from nearly every other automaker hitting the market, Outlander sales fell 12% from 2021 to 1,961 last year.
As part of Mitsubishi’s new strategy, the automaker plans for 100% of its sales to be either pure electric or hybrid by 2035, compared to its previous guidance of 50% electrified sales by 2030.
Mitsubishi calls the next two years “a turning point to a major transition” as it looks toward contributing to a sustainable society with a beefed-up lineup of electrified vehicles.
To make the transition possible, Mitsubishi plans to ramp up R&D expenses over the next few years to reach 70% of its budget after 2026, up from 20% currently.
In addition, Mitsubishi will strengthen its recently developed strategic partnership to expand its lineup. The Japanese automaker recently formed an alliance with Nissan and Renault to jointly manufacture over 30 new electric vehicles across five common platforms by 2030.
Of the four new fully electric vehicles, one will be through the Nissan alliance and another through the Renault alliance. The other two will consist of an electric pickup truck and a two-row SUV EV.
Mitsubishi’s new strategy sounds exciting with a new electric pickup, a two-row SUV, and two alliance-built EVs, but waiting until 2035 to transform its lineup might be costly.
The Japanese automaker is already falling behind in the fully electric market and is seeing PHEV sales decline. The new electric business strategy and investments are designed to stimulate the Mitsubishi brand and bring it into the modern day, but delaying any further will be wasting valuable time.
Many automakers are already achieving double-digit, even 100%, EV sales and are working on their second or third-generation EVs.
Mitsubishi is the latest Japanese automaker to announce its intentions to accelerate its EV efforts. Toyota appointed a new CEO who mentioned a new EV-first mindset, Nissan plans to release 19 new EVs by 2030, and Honda overhauled its business operations to ramp up EV deployment.