This year the theme of the Japan Mobility Show (formerly Tokyo Motor Show) for several companies seems to be historic models that represent their respective brand identities. For Mazda, it’s all about the Miata. For Honda, it’s the City. For Daihatsu, it’s the Copen. For Mitsubishi it appears to be the overlander’s darling, the Delica, and it’s really leaning into the whole off-road adventure van angle.
Mitsubishi hasn’t given a lot of details, or even a name, but describes the vehicle as an electrified four-wheel-drive MPV. While it could be a full battery electric, we suspect it a production version might use the Outlander’s PHEV system. It uses phrases like “livability,” “borderless adventure,” and “overwhelmingly spacious cabin with a sense of openness.” The Delica may have started life as a cargo hauler, but it has definitely taken its rightful place as the go-to #vanlife vehicle. The image of one kicking up dirt roostertails with a cargo box on top just reaffirms that notion.
Mitsubishi will also be showing its Last 1 Mile Mobility concept, an electric mobility scooter so solve the “last mile” problem. Except, the vehicle is equipped with some rugged-looking tires and high ground clearance. Clearly it’s not just meant for zipping around a Walmart.
Lastly, Mitsubishi will show the latest Triton pickup, which has already been revealed at the Bangkok Motor Show. However, the big news here is that the Triton will be returning to the Japanese market after a 12-year absence when it goes on sale there in early 2024.
We’ll have to wait for the show itself to learn more, but it’s a promising sign that Mitsubishi is putting effort in to Delica’s continuation. The current model, the Delica D:5, has been in production since 2007 (16 years). It even lost its manufacturing home when the Pajero plant shuttered its doors in 2020. Fortunately production was shifted to the Okazaki plant and continues there, and if a next-gen Delica is green-lit it can continue to be built there. The Delica is a model that can set Mitsubishi apart from its competitors, and serve as a life line to the struggling company.