Overnight both Fiat and Mitsubishi issued a single sentence statement confirming that the companies "have signed a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) concerning the possibility to develop and manufacture a mid-size pick-up truck, supplied by Mitsubishi and based on the next generation of L200".
Fiat Chrysler’s latest five-year plan, which was unveiled in May this year, included a ute for Latin America in the second-half of 2015.
Earlier plans for a mid-size ute, including Fiat versions of the Dodge Dakota and the Tata Xenon, have failed to materialise. At present, utes offered by Fiat Chrysler include the Brazil-built Fiat Strada, based on the Palio hatchback, and the bigger-than-Texas range of Ram pickup trucks.
Given the careful wording of the companies' announcement, the non-binding nature of the MoU and that it only concerns the possibility of developing such a car, there’s still a chance that the Fiat ute won’t eventuate.
With so much left unsaid, it’s unknown at this stage what Fiat’s version of the Triton will be christened, nor has it been made clear how different the Japanese- and Italian-branded cars will be visually and mechanically.
Mitsubishi and Chrysler have a history of collaboration dating back to the 1970s, and the Japanese company is currently scheduled to deliver the Mirage Attrage sedan to Chrysler's Mexican arm later this year.