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2008 Mitsubishi Concept-RA looked like a future Eclipse

It seemed like Mitsubishi was about to put the fun back in the Eclipse when it debuted this sharp concept coupe. Sadly, it didn't work out that way.

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Chris Paukert

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2008 Mitsubishi Concept-RA
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The Mitsubishi Concept-RA debuted at the 2008 Detroit Auto Show.

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Designed to presage a future Eclipse, the showcar featured both turbocharging and all-wheel drive, two features that were hallmarks of celebrated past Eclipse models.

2008 Mitsubishi Concept-RA
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Those butterfly doors weren't expected to make it to production, but the Concept-RA itself, well, it kinda was.

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Rather unusually, this showcar featured a diesel engine, something Mitsu was trying to promote at the time.

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Although a production version would've almost certainly had a conventional gasoline-burning engine, the turbodiesel 2.0-liter I4 allowed for 201 horsepower and a massive 310 pound-feet of torque.

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The Concept-RA also borrowed the all-wheel-drive hardware from Mitsubishi's rally-bred Lancer Evolution.

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A wraparound dashboard and minimal attendant switchgear was designed to help the driver focus their attention down the road.

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Although you can't see it in these photos, the Concept-RA featured aluminum space-frame construction.

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A flat-bottom steering wheel imparts race car-like sportiness while affording more thigh clearance.

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Those are 21-inch wheels marking out the Concept-RA's corners.

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Keep clicking or scrolling for more images of the 2008 Mitsubishi Concept-RA.

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