Mitsubishi has given us a peek behind the curtain with their concept car the RA. Is RA a name based on the ancient Egyptian sun god, or is it an acronym for RalliArt? The first guess might mean that it is the replacement for the Eclipse that DSMers have been waiting for since the second generation Eclipse ended in 1999.
What is so great about this concept car? It uses lightweight plastic on an aluminum space frame chassis and it incorporates the latest in Mitsubishi’s all wheel drive technology that includes SAWC (Super All Wheel Control) off the latest iteration of the Evolution.
The real eye opener is the engine that puts out 201 hp and 310 lbs of torque. That second number should give you a clue. Yes, it is powered by a turbocharged diesel engine.
While I see electric cars as being the end game in motor transportation, it is the diesel that will bridge the gap to when electrics are ready for prime time. Performance diesel cars are not new to Europe, but they are in this country.
Fortunately diesel fuel standards in this country have resulted in a much cleaner fuel than was previously available at our pumps. This, along with cleaner burning diesel engines, means that performance diesels will be quieter, provide more performance, not be soot generators, and provide a 30% fuel economy advantage over gasoline powered vehicles.
It is nice to see Mitsubishi provide this concept. The word is that we could be seeing something very much like it shortly in the showrooms.