In 2014, Mitsubishi will launch its next-generation compact Lancer.  At some later point, a plug-in hybrid version is expected to join the Lancer lineup, but what's to become of the king of compacts: the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution or Mitsubishi Evo?

Mitsu Evo 11 in Forza 4

Mitsu Evo 11 in Forza 4

Well, according to Autocar, if a next-generation Evo does appear, it'll likely feature a 500-plus HP plug-in hybrid setup.

It's believed the next-gen Evo would borrow heavily from the MiEV Evolution II Pikes Peak racer that we've featured here on several occasions now.

Mitsubishi MiEV Evolution II

Mitsubishi MiEV Evolution II

Autocar does say that the next-gen Evo is in the early stages of development and that its launch sort of depends on the success of the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV.  That plug-in hybrid SUV/Crossover is selling exceptionally well in Japan and should be hot when it hits US shores sometime in 2014.

The next-gen Evo is still years away, but for those looking for a capable plug-in hybrid that can crush the competition, it might be worth the extended wait.

Autocar believes the Evo PHEV will make use of a highly pumped-up version of the 2.0-liter gasser found in the plug-in Outlander.  Two 80-plus HP electric motors will likely be found in the next-gen Evo and electric-only range should be in the 40-ish mile area.  If all this turns out to be true, then the PHEV Evo could become the king of plug-in hybrids.

Source: Autocar