After too long an absence, Mitsubishi is back on the top brand list – at least on a probationary basis – with the Outlander 2022, a compact SUV that demands the attention of buyers considering a Nissan Rogue, Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, Hyundai Santa Fe, Ford Escape, Chevrolet Equinox or Mazda CX-5.
The new Outlander has a reliable transmission, good handling and a unique look. The well-equipped SEL I tested had a surprisingly chic interior.
Most compact SUVs have five seats, but the Outlander adds a pair of third row seats for occasional use, preferably by young children.
The Outlander uses the same proven drivetrain and architecture as the Nissan Rogue. It is the first Mitsubishi vehicle to benefit from the automaker’s membership in the Nissan-Renault alliance.
The Outlander has a long hood and roof for a substantial appearance. A wide grille flows into the traffic lights above the fenders. With large rectangular LED headlights positioned resolutely on the outside and a trapezoidal lower grille, the front view is reminiscent of Land Rover, but decidedly modern.
The side view is less distinctive, as is often the case with SUVs. The most noticeable aspect is a dimple of the door handles of up to about 2 o’clock on the wheels and going from the front doors to the slightly flared rear fenders.
Mitsubishi is a low-key brand in the US, so the Outlander comes with a five-year / 60,000-mile base warranty, a 10-year / 100,000-mile powertrain warranty, and free road service for five years. without mileage limit.
The Outlander’s room, features, appearance and warranty should earn it a spot on compact SUV shopping lists.
After: The 2022 Nissan Pathfinder Combines the Look of a Retro SUV with a Luxury Interior
After: 2022 VW Taos reaches the right place for small SUVs
Mitsubishi has been selling vehicles in the United States for a long time, but you can be forgiven if you’ve forgotten.
After peaking in the 1980s, it was one of the first locomotives for compact all-wheel drive, small SUVs and compact pickup trucks; vehicles supplied to Chrysler; and had an assembly plant in Illinois – Mitsubishi drifted away from American consciousness like synth-pop and Farrah Fawcett’s hair. It missed the overwhelming wave of high-quality and fuel-economy scores that have soared Toyota and Honda, slipping into the dark despite the strength of small SUVs and performance cars.
The brand also ended up returning home to Japan. It was on the verge of disbandment in 2016 when Nissan bought control, integrating Mitsubishi into the sprawling Franco-Japanese alliance that was briefly the world’s largest automaker.
GM, Toyota, and Volkswagen can all testify that being No.1 doesn’t immunize an automaker from catastrophes – bankruptcy, sudden acceleration and wearing diesel, anyone? The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance experienced this in 2019, when company mastermind Carlos Ghosn was ousted, arrested and fled Japan hiding in luggage, in that order. As the Alliance strives to reinvent itself amid post-Ghosn power play, the 2022 outlook arrives as an example of what its engineers and designers can accomplish – if the C-sequel stays on the sidelines.
Outlander Price 2022
The previous Outlander was a bit small, despite a very nice plug-in hybrid model. (By the way, the older generation PHEV is still on sale. A model based on the larger 2022 model is expected to arrive next year.)
All Outlanders, on sale now, feature a 2.5L four-cylinder engine producing 181 horsepower and a continuously variable transmission.
Prices for the 2022 Outlander start at $ 25,795 for a front-wheel drive model. All-wheel drive starts at $ 27,995. The top-of-the-line model is a $ 35,445 SEL AWD with the Touring Package. There was an introductory edition priced at $ 1,000 higher, but they’re probably already gone.
This places the Outlander at the heart of the compact SUV market.
I tested a well-equipped Outlander SEL 2.5 S-AWC – Mitsubishi prefers “full control” over all-wheel drive, although there is no difference in how its system works compared to the Nissan’s all-wheel drive. Snape. Perhaps the seating chart at Alliance meetings is alphabetical.
My test vehicle was $ 33,745, a price that compared favorably to similarly equipped competitors. All prices exclude destination charges.
In addition to its modest third row seat, features of my Outlander included:
- Diamond quilted leather seats
- Matching synthetic padded doors
- Three-zone air conditioning
- Apple Wireless CarPlay
- Android Auto
- Wireless charging
- LED headlights and position lights
- 20-inch two-tone alloy wheels
- Heated exterior mirrors
- Leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob
- 40/20/40 second row seat with folding center armrest
- Heated front and rear seats
- 8-way power adjustable driver’s seat
- 4-way power passenger seat
- 9.0 inch touchscreen
- Six speakers
- Speech Recognition
- USB-C and A ports; two each
- Bird’s eye view of the camera
The front seat is spacious and comfortable. The gauge cluster is clear and legible. Easy-to-use dials and buttons complement a touchscreen to manage frequently used functions. The large electronic shifter has short reaches and, refreshingly, a conventional PRND gear pattern.
My SEL’s white quilted leather seats were comfortable and attractive, as was the matching white synthetic material on the doors. Despite the beautiful interior, the six-speaker sound system was unremarkable.
There is a good headroom in the front and center rows of seats. The two-person rear seat offers enough knee and head room for the children. With just 11.7 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row, you’ll likely keep the rear seat folded flat most of the time.
The Outlander’s sleek interior design is a cut above its corporate cousin, the successful Rogue.
The normally aspirated 2.5L engine’s 181 horsepower and matching torque isn’t thrilling, but acceleration is okay. The continuously variable transmission is discreet.
The steering is precise and well weighted. There is very little body roll in fast maneuvers, which makes the Outlander fun to drive.
The AWD Outback’s EPA fuel economy rating is 24 mpg city, 30 highway, and 27 combined.
The key combined figure is in the middle of the pack, but 2 mpg less than the Rogue, which has the same drivetrain but weighs about 170 pounds lighter. The seats are heavy, not to mention the many other features of the Outlander.
Outlander Safety and Driver Assistance Features
- Trailer swing control
- Hill start aid
- Automatic main beam headlights
- Forward collision warning and mitigation with pedestrian detection
- Driver attention alert
- Convenient Mi-Pilot Driving Assistant (speed, tracking distance and lane centering)
- Adaptive cruise control
- Lane Keeping Alert / Assistance
- Recognition of traffic signs
- Blind spot warning and assistance
- Rear cross traffic alert
- Automatic rear emergency braking
- Front parking sensors
Mitsubishi Outlander 2022 at a glance
Base price: $ 25,795
Front-wheel drive or four-wheel drive, 5 + 2-passenger compact SUV
Tested model: Outlander SEL 2.5 S-AWC
Tested price: $ 33,745
On sale now
Engine: 2.5L four-cylinder
Power: 181 hp at 6,000 rpm; 181 lb-ft of torque at 3,600 rpm
Transmission: Continuously variable automatic
EPA fuel economy estimate: 24 mpg city / 30 highway / 26 combined. Regular fuel
Annual fuel cost estimated by the EPA: $ 1,750
Wheelbase: 106.5 inches
Length: 185.4 inches
Width: 74.7 inches (mirrors folded)
Height: 68.7 inches with roof bars
Curb weight: 3,803 pounds
Passenger volume: 120.8 cubic feet (with sunroof)
Cargo volume: 11.7 cubic feet behind the rear seat, 33.5 with the third row folded; 78.3 with second row folded (with sunroof)
Towing capacity: 2,000 pounds
Assembled in Okazaki, Japan