Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) president and COO, Tetsuro Aikawa said that the Mitsubishi Pajero will continue on in its current guise, as it sets to weather an uncertain future, CarAdvice reports. According to Aikawa, the SUV’s fuel economy and weight are key issues, while a replacement model might only come in a few years’ time.

Aikawa said at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show that, “there is an issue about the weight and fuel economy, so the market that we can sell is going to be limited.” He further explained that the company will instead be training its focus towards building front-wheel drive SUVs instead.

Also, recently unveiled at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show is the all-electric Mitsubishi eX Concept SUV. While it previews the second-generation Mitsubishi ASX, the concept could also serve as a broader hint of the future direction in which Mitsubishi’s range of sport utility vehicles might be taking.

Mitsu EX Concept Tokyo 2015 8

Aikawa explained further that, “with regard to Europe beyond 2020, and stringent CO2 regulations, rather than this type of vehicle (referring to the Pajero) I think people will look more into vehicles that produce less CO2 and have greater fuel economy.”

With the company’s key region being ASEAN, the demand for the Pajero Sport is the main driver in terms of Mitsubishi’s sales. The president stated however, “I’m not saying this is the last Pajero for the time being.”

Meanwhile, a new premium SUV will be introduced by Mitsubishi to be slotted in between the ASX and Outlander. It will likely take some cues from the Concept XR-Phev II.

Mitsubishi Pajero facelift:

Mitsubishi eX Concept at the 2015 Tokyo Motor Show: