Mitsubishi is feeling a little nostalgic right now. It’s getting set for a return to the Rebelle Rally this year, running in a 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander that nods to one of the company’s most important historic victories, when Jutta Kleinschmidt became the first woman to take the overall victory at Dakar twenty years ago.
If you don’t recognize Kleinschmidt, I encourage you to look her up. She ran rally cars and motorcycles at Dakar. And, if you’re unfamiliar, look into the Rebelle Rally, too, because it’s a pretty cool event. The Outlander that Mitsubishi’s bringing to the 2021 Rebelle Rally is inspired by Kleinschmidt’s Pajero.
Its livery is a tribute to the legendary Pajero, but it gets a few updates. For starters, we’re on the fifth PlayStation now, though Sony has been replaced by BF Goodrich.
The thing that sticks out to me — other than this being an entirely different model — is the doors! This anniversary Outlander has two extra doors that sharpen the contrast between the extant and extinct SUVs. I’ll be damned, but I think the Outlander would look pretty cool as a two-door. The Defender, the Bronco, the Wrangler. All of these are just way cooler as two-door models. Throw the Cherokee in there, too.
Mitsubishi was rally royalty! The triple diamond meant something. The Lancer. The Pajero. The Delica, even. How did that all get reduced to the Mirage and Outlander? An anniversary livery or a tribute is cool and all, but it’s just not the same. Mitsubishi is really missing its glory days. Yup, I miss them, too.