Mitsubishi stuck its badge on the Renault Captur and called it a day after launching the “new” ASX last month. It will put more effort into this small crossover for the ASEAN market where it plans to sell a production version of this XFC Concept. Unveiled in Ho Chi Min City (formerly known as Saigon), Vietnam’s most populous city, the vehicle is touted as “the most suitable companion for an exciting life” with its “smooth and sturdy” design.
Marketing jargon aside, it has an all-Mitsubishi design that goes against the ASX’s obvious French DNA. It boasts L-shaped LED headlights with grille-like daytime running lights mounted below for repeated light markings at the rear where the taillights have a similar appearance. Luminous hexagonal shapes are located at either end of the XFC Concept while the side profile shows the camera instead of a conventional mirror.
The interior follows the latest trend by adopting side-by-side screens, but fortunately, there are still separate controls for climate settings. They are mounted on the capacitive touch panel on the center console where we also see a “floating” gear selector and stop/start buttons. The flat-bottom steering wheel has hexagonal touch buttons to mirror the HVAC and control modules installed on the door card.
Surprisingly, the front seats and rear seats have a contrasting yellow color that is also used for the stitching throughout the cabin. The XFC concept appears to have a completely flat floor with ample space in the rear for three passengers having access to a touch panel-mounted temperature controller. Mitsubishi says this small crossover has class-leading interior space and ample cargo volume behind the seats.
Technical specifications haven’t been given yet, but we do know this is Mitsubishi’s first vehicle to have a “Wet” driving mode to allow “safe driving even on roads flooded with sudden rain.” The XFC concept has other driving modes to choose from: Normal, Gravel and Mud.
The next production version will obviously be scaled down, so don’t expect those fancy lights and side cameras to last. Consequently, we can say the same about the two screens mounted on the end of the dashboard as they show the footage captured by the camera. On road models, Mitsubishi will likely install air vents. The concept’s 20-inch wheels seem like an exaggeration for a small crossover, and touch controls will probably be replaced with regular buttons.
Mitsubishi will have the production model sold in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) markets – including Vietnam – starting in fiscal year 2023, so between April 2023 and March 2024. If it is to be a commercial success, its availability will expand to other regions beyond ASEAN.