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Nissan and Mitsubishi Plan a Small Pickup For the US That Could Be a Plug-In Hybrid

Asia Cross Country Rally 2024 Mitsubishi Triton Ralliart
Asia Cross Country Rally 2024 Mitsubishi Triton Ralliart

Truck enthusiasts have mourned the disappearance of small, affordable, useful pickups for years now. At one point, it seemed like every new truck was going to be a $70,000 EV like the Ford F-150 Lightning, rather than a $20,000 hybrid like the Maverick. But the tides may finally be turning, and one of the first to make a move could be Nissan, which is working on a smaller pickup for the U.S. that might be a plug-in hybrid—or it could be electric.

The truck was confirmed last week by Nissan CEO Makoto Uchida in a presentation of Nissan's midterm business strategy where it also teased an electric Skyline crossover. According to a summary by Automotive News, Nissan and Mitsubishi will split the development of a smaller next-generation pickup that they will manufacture in Mexico. That'd let the truck avoid the U.S. Chicken Tax and provide easier access to Latin American markets. But what drivetrain will power it remains murky, as well as its exact size and time of arrival.

Asia Cross Country Rally 2024 Mitsubishi Triton Ralliart
Asia Cross Country Rally 2024 Mitsubishi Triton Ralliart. Mitsubishi

Let's rule one thing out for starters: It will probably not be the current Triton, with its available manual, diesel single-cab variant. Mitsubishi outright told me it doesn't plan to sell it here, so nix that. That leaves two possibilities, one being a midsize successor to the Frontier, the other being that compact Maverick competitor. Such a truck wasn't counted out when I talked to Mitsubishi's product planner for North America, so it remains a possibility.