When you hear about the Mitsubishi Delica, it is probably either the D:5 minivan or one of the older generation vans that come to mind. For the 55th anniversary of the nameplate in 2023, Mitsubishi decided to expand the lineup with the addition of the Delica Mini – a rugged-looking kei car with sliding doors for the Japanese market.
The Delica Mini doesn’t really look like a Delica, but the large lettering on both ends makes sure you won’t confuse it with something else. At the front, the designers created a boxier reinterpretation of its “Dynamic Shield”. Instead of the usual split headlights, the Delica Mini gets semi-elliptical LED units somehow reminiscent of the Land Rover Defender.
The lower part of the bumpers, the side sills, and the areas around the wheelarches are painted in black, matching the roof and the pillars for a duo-tone look. Aluminum-style skid plates complete the rugged treatment, alongside roof rails. At the back, the Delica Mini has a large vertical tailgate with vertically-mounted LED headlights and a tiny spoiler, just for the sake of it.
Mitsubishi didn’t go into details about the underpinnings of the Delica Mini, but confirmed it will be offered with a hybrid powertrain and a 4WD system. It seems that the new model will be closely related to the Mitsubishi eK X Space and Nissan Roox twins, which measure 3,395 mm (133.7 inches) long. The aforementioned kei cars are already available with an electrified 660cc engine that is mated to a CVT gearbox in 2WD or 4WD flavors.
The Delica Mini will go into production in mid-2023, exclusively offered in Japan. The closest rival to the new model is the recently revealed Daihatsu Tanto FunCross which has a similar footprint and character. The SUV-style kei cars are becoming a trend, so we guess that more automakers will join with rival proposals.