QotW: What’s the baddest Nissan-Mitsubishi combo?

Maisto BRE Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X BRE 2

Almost exactly one year ago when news of the Toyota-Mazda partnership broke, it seemed like two companies, each excelling at their own particular skill sets, would only make each other better. Our QotW asked what the ultimate Toyota-Mazda combo would be. Somehow, though, Nissan’s takeover of Mitsubishi feels a lot more ominous. Therefore, you can choose whether to interpret this week’s question as “good bad” or “actually bad.”

What’s the baddest Nissan-Mitsubishi combo?

What say you, dear reader? As always, the most entertaining comment by next Monday will receive a prize. Scroll down to see the winner of last week’s QotW, “What JNC should’ve had a shooting brake variant?” 


Among many great answers, this week’s winner was Gerka, who recommended a shooting brake based on the daruma Celica. None was ever built and we suck at Photoshop, but luckily Gerka also helpfully supplied a surrogate in the form of the RV-1 Concept!

I always wish the First gen Celicas had a wagon version. The RV concept that Toyota made is seriously cool but as much as I love the experimental gullwing windows and all that I would have loved to have seen an actual marketable version.

Omedetou, your comment has earned you a set of decals from the JNC Shop!

JNC Decal smash

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23 Responses to QotW: What’s the baddest Nissan-Mitsubishi combo?

  1. Tim says:

    Damn, there’s a lot of options.

    The return of the 3000GT VR4. Based off the GT-R.
    The 5G Eclipse / Pulsar twins.
    The Starion / S16 Silvia. (Not available in the US.)

  2. Stuart Kayrooz says:

    hmmm….both seem to have a fairly economical bent of late, and characterful models (especially in the Mitsubishi camp) are falling by the wayside… Not to mention the recent fuel emissions scandal that they’ll be trying to recover from.

    I’ll go for the bad-bad option (as opposed to Good-bad) and foresee Mitsubishi reopening a freshly nailed coffin only to spit in it – with the Nissan leaf, rebranded as:

    the Mitsubishi Mirage Evolution I.

    Espousing all the qualities we’ve come to expect from the leaf such as a relatively high pricetag and short range, combined with the thrill of an aggressive bodykit and mirage qualities like poor build, lacklustre suspension and rear drum brakes. It would, however, allow Nissan to be damn sure there aren’t any fuel figures to fudge.

    Sadly this is probably closer to the truth than any truly exciting models, but hopefully it turns the other way, with a Starion/Silvia combo with the efficiencies that platform sharing brings – or, a return to small capacity 6 cylinders to bring back a new, smaller, more historic Z car (possibly turbocharged, as the case may be).

  3. Ant says:

    Mitsubishi could certainly do a lot worse than get hold of some Jukes to rebadge, given that model’s sales success. Possibly the Nismo version, as a new RVR Turbo. The current RVR is a decent car but hardly spectacular. That said, the Juke is getting on a bit itself, so perhaps that’s one to hold for the next generation.

    Both companies should probably just raid Renault’s range and come up with a suitably restyled version of the current, rear-wheel drive Twingo. It could form the basis of the next i-MiEV for Mitsubishi (Renault co-developed the Twingo with Smart and its Fortwo/Forfour, of which there’ll be an electric model, so the platform is already EV-ready). Wouldn’t conform to kei jidōsha size regulations, but might have more global appeal as a result.

    For Nissan, give it some unique styling and call it a modern-day Be-1 or Pao. Spin off a whole new line of Pike factory cars. Electric, naturally-aspirated, turbocharged, all compact and rear-wheel drive, manuals and DCTs etc.

    As you can see, I’ve gone down the good-bad path. Positivity, people!

    • Ant says:

      I forgot to note, but it should be obvious anyway, that mentioning Renault is a nod to the Renault-Nissan Alliance… it wasn’t just grabbed from the blue!

  4. Banpei says:

    I would love to see the resurrection of the GTO and Silvia S16 based on a shared platform.

    Unfortunately I fear no such thing ever happens and in the end we only see combos like the space star/Micra, asx/juke, outlander/quasqai. For Nissan the funds for investments in risky markets like the new Silvia it next GTR have now been pumped into the 30% stake of Mitsubishi.

    I also foresee issues similar to the British Leyland merger: brands competing against each other within the same company. So probably anything Mitsubishi biting the Nissan market will receive less funding or will disappear.

  5. Dankan says:

    A good Nissan-Mitsubishi mash-up might be a vintage Mitsu with an RB swap. A bad one, just about anything from either current model range. I’ve not been impressed with the contemporary Nissan I own, and the less said about the entirety of Mitsubishi’s modern crapulence the better.

    So, find an old Galant and turn it into a GTO replica with Watanabes and a big, naturally aspirated RB breathing through a set of open intakes.

  6. dickie says:

    here’s the real bad (as in realistically bad because there’s just no possibility of a good-bad scenario in this dimension) mashup:

    how about a nissan forklift with a mitsubishi diesel engine?

    or if it has to be related to road-going vehicles, some mitsubishi OEM accessories under the hood of the next model Juke? can’t really decide whether that’s an improvement as neither brand has been a beacon of reliability.

    maybe they’ll just kill off the entire mitsu lineup and use the available workers and manufacturing resources to expand their operation and churn out more CUVs with CVTs.

    then they can resurrect the name to sell rebadged Indian- or Iranian-made subcompacts to developing markets.

  7. Yoda says:

    Short term, a Nissan-badged Outlander Sport aimed at fleets to relieve pressure of demand for the Rogue.

    Longer term, a renewed focus on Mitsubishi as the “performance division” with the usual platform sharing.

  8. Gerka says:

    Fricking neato! I never win anything. How do I go about collecting this awesome prize!

    • Ben Hsu says:

      We will send you an email today. Please be sure to check your spam folders. Apparently anything with the word “winner” is spam these days :).

  9. Toyotageek says:

    I just want to know if that lead Maisto photo is for real and not a custom?

  10. Andrew says:

    Why does everyone see this bad for Mitsubishi? Nissan was already buying tech from Mitsubishi. Remember when Nissan was nearly bankrupt in 2001, Renault swooped in and saved them. Then the 350z came out, then a ton of really nice Infiniti models in the mid 2000’s. The VQ FM platform was awesome when it came out and lead to a lot of vehicle sales. Nissan can hopefully push Mitsubishi into releasing some new models and actually spending money on advertising said models. Speaking from working at both Infinit dealer and a Mitsu dealer, neither have really had quality issues. Mitsubishi suffers from lack of advertising and constant keyboard jockey bashing on the internet. I’d love to see the Eclipse return as a RWD BRZ/FRS sized ca, call it the Eclipse Starion. Say what you will about the lack luster styling and performance of the 3rd and 4th gen Eclipses, but the damn things sold. They sold to kids, they sold to middle age folks and they sold to retired folks. People love a two door coupe.

    • MikeRL411 says:

      Advertizing? I wanted an Infiniti J30T but could not find any dealer advertisement in the Los Angeles CA South Bay [yes the other South Bay for the San Francisco mind fixed] area! One day I was driving the Pacific Coast Highway civil sector in the Torrance area and by chance found an Infiniti dealer [he had NEVER advertized in the local papers.] Despite the lack of an inspired sales team I found the specific J30T model and color that I wanted. I bought it at a good price since the dealer had very poor advertizing history and the car that I wanted had sit on his show floor so long that the battery had run down! The moral here is that poor dealer performance can surprisingly be to the buyer’s advantage! Just ask “Do you want my money or the privilage for your financing bank to find another dealer who is willing to sell this car instead of you paying me to finance a non-possible sale at the price you have asking for the last 6 months?” Most dealers put a tag on the driver’s side wingscreen showing the date at which the vehicle was initially put up for sale. The coding is infintile at best! Look at several vehicles and you can easily figure out the sequence! It is as simple as “Month/date” I got a very good price since I figured that the specific vehicle I wanted had been used as a Nissan USA VIP car and had several VIP upgrades like a 12 disc DVD player and full floor mats.

  11. jivecom says:

    I’ll throw one in for the “just bad” side – Mitsubishi Outlander Cross-Cabrio

  12. Daniel says:

    Really posible and simple:
    Nissan IdX in the Lancer platform. Already tested and reliable enough, plenty of aftermarket. Is amortized in every posible way by now. And plenty of factory with espace available in mitsubishi.
    Then a Mitsubishi based in the latest Clio or Megane platform. Maybe some sedan.
    And put some money in a new medium size pick-up (ala toyota hilux, big market and not so much offert exept the L200).

  13. melvin says:

    Mitsubishi-Alpine superduper rally weapon!

  14. LB says:

    Speculation of return of the Silvia, with a Mercedes engine.


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