2019 Nissan Frontier, Mitsubishi Raider, new mid-size pickup
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Mitsubishi “Raider” Could Plunder Next-Generation Nissan Frontier

Mitsubishi could pick Nissan’s pocket with rebadged Frontier named “Raider”

It looks like the Mitsubishi Raider mid-size pickup will become reality. While trademark filings aren’t a guarantee of a new model coming, it’s a pretty good indication of what’s on the drawing board. According to a report by Autoblog, Mitsubishi filed to trademark the “Raider’” name for use on “automobiles and structural parts therefor,” on November 15th, 2017.

If you remember, Mitsubishi sold a small Raider pickup in the U.S. between 2005 and 2009. Torque News reported in September, the Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance could give the new Mitsubishi mid-size pickup a re-birth. Now it looks like it’s getting closer to reality. Why wouldn’t the Japanese automaker want to capitalize on the fastest-growing automotive segment? It will definitely shake up the fast-growing mid-size pickup market and give the Toyota Tacoma, Chevy Colorado, GMC Canyon and Honda Ridgeline new competition.

The report says Mitsubishi’s CEO Osamu Masuko was quoted as saying, “We are focused on developing pickups for non-U.S. markets such as [Southeast Asia] and the Middle East. So for the U.S., if there is an opportunity, we might get it from Nissan. We would like to consider if there are opportunities from within the Alliance.”

Sounds like the alliance that produces the Nissan Navara pictured above could also produce a new Mitsubishi mid-size pickup for the U.S. market after all. According to an earlier report by Automotive News, the new Mitsubishi Raider will launch in 2020 or 2021 after the new-generation Frontier has time to breathe and it won’t upset Nissan dealers. Mitsubishi’s new pickup could also get the new-generation Nissan V6 engine under the hood.

Nissan will launch the next-generation 2019 Frontier sometime next year. Look for the new mid-size pickup to be rebadged as a Mitsubishi Raider. This will shake up the Toyota Tacoma, Chevy Colorado, GMC Canyon and Honda Ridgeline mid-size pickup market even more. Stay tuned.

Photo credit: Nissan Navara

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Comments

Mitsubishi seems to believe their Trition is too small and not worth the effort to import to North America or build in location excempt from US tariffs. That is a shame. Smaller truck would be an asset and separate it from almost full size midsize trucks. With Mitsubishi part of Nissan-Renault the strategy for trucks is leading to Mitsubishi design build smaller and lower cost trucks and Nissan handling midsize and full size with Nissan - Mitsubishi - Renault badging and selling whatever version is appropriate as dictated by markets. What were left with is a repeat of the Suzuki Equator.