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With crossovers of all sizes enjoying immense popularity with consumers, Mitsubishi is making a grab for some of the action with a third CUV offering. The as-of-yet unnamed vehicle is set to slot in between the baby Outlander Sport and the full-size Outlander, CEO Osamu Masuko told Automotive News ahead of the Tokyo Motor Show.

Aimed squarely at the crossover-crazy US and European markets, this new vehicle will likely enter production two years from now. That should mean an auto show debut at Paris or Los Angeles in 2016, or at some point in early 2017. The new vehicle would duke it out with the redesigned Kia Sportage and Hyundai Tuscon. If it sounds like this new CUV would cannibalize some of its little brother's sales, you'd be right. To prevent this, Mitsu will tweak the sizes of the vehicles it currently offers.

"The Outlander is growing in size, while the Outlander Sport is getting smaller, so it opens a space for the new SUV," Masuko told AN. "We need something to fit in between."

Having a three-tiered CUV lineup might help Mitsubishi, which has enjoyed 26 percent sales growth through September this year. According to AN, over half of Mitsu's current sales come from the Outlander and Outlander Sport. Adding a third CUV would capitalize on a US market that's clamoring for light trucks and crossovers.

Before the third model debuts, the next step for the brand will be the arrival of a plug-in hybrid Outlander. You can look for our review on that next year.



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