Click above for a hi-res gallery of i MiEV Sport Air renderings

When the average enthusiast thinks of Mitsubishi, the first thing that jumps to mind is likely the Evolution, but the Japanese automaker's bread is buttered by the sales of large SUVs. This means that profits are pretty tough to come by these days as anything that guzzles gas has rapidly seen itself falling out of favor. In light of this fact, Mitsubishi now says that it has halted development of everything that isn't eco-friendly. SUVs and large cars are out; electric cars, plug-in hybrids and small cars are in. What does this mean for future developments for the Evo platform? We don't know, but it doesn't sound promising.

According to CEO Osamu Masuko, the automaker can't abandon its SUV roots entirely, so the future strategy will be two-fold: continue to offer larger cars like the Lancer and Galant and four-wheel drive SUVs in hybrid form, while focusing on fully electric machines on the smaller end. The first fruits of Mitsubishi's new green plans may be production versions of the i MiEV electric car, but plug-in hybrid versions of its larger cars and SUVs are likely by 2013.

Related GalleryMitsubishi i MIEV Sport Air

[Source: Automotive News - sub. req'd]