Mitsubishi to drop Lancer Evolution in the U.S.

(March 31, 2014) Just as Subaru begins rolling out a new generation of its performance-oriented WRX, Mitsubishi — its chief rival in the all-wheel drive hot-sedan segment — has announced that it will discontinue production of the Lancer Evolution at the end of its current generation, according to a report today by Automotive News.

The Lance Evolution, which debuted in 1992, is the company's last sporty offering in the United States. The latest version has been on the market since 2007. A spokeswoman would not say when Mitsubishi would halt production of the current vehicle, according to Automotive News.

Mitsubishi has been steadily moving its U.S. offerings to small utility vehicles and electric cars.

"Mitsubishi Motors does not have any plans to design a successor with the current concept, as a high-performance four-wheel drive gasoline-powered sedan," spokeswoman Namie Koketsu told Automotive News. She added that the company will explore the possibilities of high-performance models that incorporate electric vehicle technology.

The revitalized 2015 Subaru WRX and WRX-STI are just now reaching dealer showrooms. It now will be playing with fewer competitors.