January 30, 2008 Mitsubishi Motors has released these sketches of its Prototype-S sports hatchback concept ahead of its debut at the 78th Geneva International Motor Show. Powered by a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder DOHC MIVEC intercooler / turbocharger engine developing 177 kW (240 PS) and 343 Nm (35 kg-m), the Prototype-S is evolved from the Concept-Sportback car shown at Frankfurt in 2005 and provides a taste of what to expect from the forthcoming 5-door hatchback variant of the Lancer family expected later in the year.
Finished in metallic orange - the color of choice for several of Mitsubishi's recent showings - the wide, low-slung design is marked by the continuation of the inverted-slant nose and trapezoidal "Jet Fighter" grille theme recently showcased by the Concept RA and a high-shouldered rear end and rear roof spoiler that Mitsubishi says embodies its vision for a flexible sports sedan that moves away from traditional hatchbacks. Prototype-S will also add the convenience of a lift-gate and flexible rear seating to the driving dynamics of the new Lancer range.
The 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine is mated to Mitsubishi's high-efficiency Twin Clutch SST automated manual transmission and a full-time 4WD driveline that features Active Center Differential (ACD) - a set-up that uses an electronically controlled multi-plate hydraulic clutch to optimally tailor front/rear drive torque split to different driving conditions and deliver the best balance between steering response and traction.
The Prototype-S also employs Mitsubishi's now familiar Innovative Valve timing Electronic Control System (MIVEC), a system that continuously varies inlet valve timing via a hydraulic mechanism incorporated in the inlet camshaft side sprocket, optimizing engine speed and load and provides high performance throughout the RPM range. In addition to raising engine output by enhancing charging efficiency at high engine speeds, the system stabilizes combustion at low engine speeds, improving fuel efficiency and reducing emissions.
The 78th Geneva International Motor Show runs from March 4 through March 16 at the Geneva Palexpo exhibition and conference complex.