Automotive

Published on February 17th, 2021 | by Joshua Chin

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All New Mitsubishi Outlander Launched In North America

Chances are high that we will soon be seeing this brand new Outlander locally too. 

Mitsubishi has recently launched its all-new Outlander SUV. Making its debut through an Amazon Live presentation, this fourth generation car will serve as the replacement for the outgoing model that is soon to celebrate its 9th birthday already. 

Kicking off with (its rather Engelberg Tourer-esque) exterior first and starting from the front, this new Outlander continues on with Mitsubishi’s current corporate Dynamic Shield face. This therefore translates to a large X-shaped front grille flanked by blockish fog lamp nacelles on either side, and is topped off with slim slit-like LED headlights at the top edges. 

Moving down the side meanwhile, the new Outlander features a more SUV-like side profile as compared to the outgoing model. This is partly thanks to the new car being 1.5 inches taller than its predecessor, but it could also be down to the linear window line, the chunkier D-pillar and the optional fitment of larger 20-inch alloy wheels. 

As for the rear of the Outlander, Mitsubishi claims that the tailgate design with its hexagon motif and T-shaped taillights were inspired by the rear-mounted spare tyre of the Pajero. Looking at it though, the rear of this new Japanese SUV does perhaps resemble more towards the back end design of the current Jeep Grand Cherokee. 

Under the hood of this all-new Mitsubishi SUV, there lies a newly-developed 2.5 litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder that is mated to an 8-speed CVT. Though the tri-diamond marque are tight lipped on the exact origins of this powertrain combination, the power and torque figures of 181 hp and 245 Nm are suspiciously similar to what could be found in the Nissan Rogue. 

Having said that, what is unique to this Outlander from its Nissan platform mate however would be an updated version of Mitsubishi’s electronically-controlled 4WD and S-AWC (Super-All Wheel Control) system on all-wheel drive variants for better control in tricky conditions. This particular Japanese SUV also comes a drive mode selector with up to six driving modes to better adapt the road conditions and driving style of the individual driver. 

Additionally, this family-friendly SUV is packed to the rafters with the both active and passive safety aids. On the active side, the Outlander is equipped with MI-PILOT Assist which includes Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) with speed sign recognition and Lane Keep Assist (LKA). On the passive side on the other hand are the standard 11 airbags, which includes a front centre airbag that will deploy between the driver’s seat and front passenger seat in the case of a side impact collision.

Continuing on the topic of tech, the interior of the Outlander is suitably equipped with the latest gadgets and gizmos like the large digital instrument cluster and an equally large floating central infotainment display with integrated Android Auto and wireless Apple CarPlay. Other such interior niceties that are to be found within this three-row SUV includes 10.8-inch head-up display, Mitsubishi Connect, heated seats, tri-zone automatic climate control, rear door sunshades, a large number of charging ports as well as a 10-speaker BOSE sound system. 

Now aside from all these cool tech, it is worth just highlighting for a moment too that this new two-tone cabin design itself is suitably fresh, funky and rather luxurious. Featuring diamond-quilted leather seats and a knurled finish to the knobs and switchgear, the interior of new Outlander is a far cry from its dated predecessor. 

The new Outlander is set to be priced from $26,990 (RM 110,000) when it goes on sale in the North American market in April 2021. Mitsubishi has also stated that this new SUV will arrive in other markets shortly after that, though there has been no official word thus far on when exactly it will make its way here to Malaysia. 

PRESS RELEASE: MITSUBISHI MOTORS CORPORATION (MMC) revealed the all-new Outlander, featuring a new design direction, premium quality, rugged performance and innovative technology. The flagship SUV is reimagined and reinvented in every way and gears up for sale in North America (the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico) in April 2021, with other markets to follow.

“Based on the product concept ‘I-Fu-Do-Do’, which means authentic and majestic in Japanese, the all-new Outlander has been crafted into a reliable SUV with significantly upgraded styling, road performance, and a high-quality feel to satisfy the needs of customers who want to expand their horizons and take on challenges of every kind,” said Takao Kato, chief executive officer of MMC. “With the launch of the all-new Outlander, we will first expand our sales in the North American market and then aim for global growth.”

With a complete upgrade, the all-new Outlander is the fourth generation of the series. Styling emphasizes its powerful sense of presence with the next generation Dynamic Shield front face, large diameter 20-inch wheels, fenders and bold proportions. Newly developed platform and 2.5L engine, updated electronically-controlled 4WD and S-AWC (Super-All Wheel Control) system, and newly developed drive mode selector all contribute to the safe and secure road performance. The cabin space features an enhanced feeling of quality and convenience through a high-quality interior, comfortable three-row seven seats, liquid crystal meter displays, and a new wireless smartphone charging function.

In North America, the Outlander was launched in 2002 as MITSUBISHI MOTORS’ first crossover SUV. Through three generations, it has been highly recognized for its utility and road performance as an SUV, as well as its eco-friendliness and economy. Globally, the total sales volume of the Outlander series has reached 2.6 million units.

Heritage-inspired powerful design

The design concept of the all-new Mitsubishi Outlander is “Bold Stride”, representing a bold, adventurous attitude and confidence to move forward. The strong, horizontal-themed proportion from front to rear, the contrast of broad and powerful surface and character lines with sharp edges, as well as the large-diameter 20-inch wheels and overhanging fenders that emphasize the wide body express a bold aura and a sense of presence and stability.

The next generation Dynamic Shield that expresses strong performance and protection of both the people and the car further emphasizes the all-new Outlander’s powerfulness as an SUV. The daytime running lights and turn signals were positioned in the upper part and given a thin, sharp shape to improve their visibility by oncoming vehicles and pedestrians. The headlights were placed beneath them toward the outside to illuminate the road more brightly and emphasize the wide body.

A hexagon motif that appears to have been cut from a single surface ornaments the tailgate. This unique and sophisticated shape was inspired by the rear-mounted spare tire of the PAJERO/MONTERO, and the upper part expresses stability while the lower part shows the high road performance as an SUV. Further, the horizontal-themed T-shaped taillights emphasize the wide look of the body and stability.

The body colors come in MITSUBISHI MOTORS’ unique high-brightness paint Diamond Series, Red Diamond and White Diamond, and Black Diamond is newly added to the lineup. Black Diamond is a special color consisting of three coats, and a high-density shiny layer containing glass is added to make the vehicle appear jet black when not lit but then emits a powerful sparkle when struck by light. Also available are six basic colors for a total selection of nine body colors.

Rugged engineering maximizes performance and driver confidence

The newly developed platform greatly improves collision safety performance and achieves a high level of steering stability. For the first time MITSUBISHI MOTORS has used an ultra-high tensile strength steel sheet with hot stamping around the cabin to create a high-strength cabin structure with little deformation while also achieving weight reduction. Adopting connected cyclic structures around the engine compartment and cabin increased flexural and torsional rigidity of the body over that of the previous model. The multi-link suspension and dual pinion electric power steering achieve high-quality ride comfort while also providing operability with a direct, linear feel. This greatly improves traceability during cornering as well as linear stability and provides driving pleasure.

The newly developed 2.5L gasoline engine improves maximum output by 8.9 percent and fuel efficiency (WLTC mode) by 2.6 percent over the previous model. Torqueful and powerful at low to medium rpm but smooth and easy-to-handle at high rpm means the driver can enjoy pleasant city trips to fun sporty driving. An 8-speed sport mode CVT is used for the transmission. The step shift control that changes speeds crisply like a multistage automatic transmission is employed for acceleration, and a powerful and agile acceleration can be felt when pressing down on the accelerator. When cruising, the driver can enjoy a quiet and smooth driving.

For the 4WD model, electronically-controlled 4WD incorporating a hydraulic clutch driven by an electric motor is used in the center coupling device that conducts front and rear torque distribution. The front and rear wheels can be strongly restrained from when the vehicle is stopped, so the rear wheel drive force is generated at the moment of start off to provide a powerful sensation befitting a 4WD. This in particular generates power under severe conditions, such as starting off uphill on frozen roads.

The 4WD model is equipped with an improved S-AWC integrated vehicle dynamics control system. The Brake AYC (Active Yaw Control) is adopted on the rear wheels as well, making it possible to provide front and rear wheel distributed control. Sensors detect the steering angle, yaw rate, driving torque, brake pressure, wheel speed, and other factors to continuously and correctly identify driver operation and vehicle status. When turning, the Brake AYC optimizes the difference in drive force and braking force among the front and rear, right and left wheels to improve tire gripping ability to allow the driver to steer as desired. In the 2WD model, Brake AYC for front and rear wheel distributed control was also employed to achieve integrated control with ASC (Active Stability Control) and ABS (Anti-lock Braking System) to maintain driving stability on a variety of road surfaces.

The all-new Mitsubishi Outlander is equipped with drive modes that allow the driver to select the vehicle driving characteristics that are optimal for a variety of operation styles and driving situations. There are six modes for 4WD models and five modes for 2WD models. The mode selector in the center console can be used to select the drive mode for choosing the road situation and Eco mode for choosing the operation style. The settings for the drive mode are Normal for normal driving, Tarmac for sporty driving on paved roads, Gravel for high traction performance and stability on unpaved roads, Snow for snowy and other slippery roads, and Mud to increase the road handling ability on muddy roads, in deep snow and similar conditions. The drive modes bring out the high road handling of 4WD models and also increase the potential of 2WD models to provide a sense of security and reliability while driving. When a mode is selected, an image representing the driving situation is displayed in the meter to allow the driver to intuitively select a mode.

A comfortable sanctuary for the whole family

A linear instrument panel with a powerful horizontal tone gives the vehicle a spacious and roomy look while producing a functional form that makes it easy to see the changes in the vehicle position. The upper part is covered with a soft padding wrapped in leather, and stitching has been applied to project a high-quality feel. The door panels feature a large area of door inserts, and the same soft padding as the instrument panel and floor console sides is used to create a high-quality and comfortable space.

The interior color variations for the P-Line feature genuine leather seats of light gray and black. The instrument panel and door trim are the same color, and real aluminum is used in the shift panel. Saddle tan accent color and semi-aniline leather seats are also available as an option for the P-Line. The H-Line features black suede combination seats and piano black interior material, while the M-Line offers light gray or black fabric material seats and piano black interior material.

The front seats have a two-layer urethane structure to ensure the seats are comfortable the moment they are sat on and to reduce fatigue during long trips. Roominess and comfortability is enhanced by widening the body and increasing the legroom of the first and second-row seats. In addition, features such as seat heaters, 3-zone automatic climate control, and rear door sunshades are available depending on the trim level to make the rear seats more comfortable for a family SUV.

There are two types of meters depending on the trim level. The 12.3-inch full digital driver display equipped with a MITSUBISHI MOTORS’ first full-screen, full-color liquid crystal display shows a variety of contents on a large screen with clarity without appearing cluttered. The display is also equipped with a customization function that allows a variety of information to be freely combined and displayed. Another high-contrast meter with a 7-inch multi-information display can show simple arrow navigation in the central information display. It utilizes the high recognition advantage of an analog display while producing a high-quality look with a stereoscopic dial and decorated indicator needle.

For certain trim levels, a large 9-inch screen is used for the center display and is equipped with Smartphone-link Display Audio navigation system. This smoothly provides highly accurate route information using internal maps and navigation functions. A variety of functions including navigation and audio can be easily selected with one touch of the launch menu icon that is always displayed at the bottom of the screen. By connecting to Android smartphone or iPhone, user can also enjoy the Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, 6 applications. Functions for receiving the latest traffic information or updating software online are also planned for the near future.

To provide driving information safely and more quickly, for the first time MITSUBISHI MOTORS has installed a windshield-type 10.8-inch Head-Up Display (HUD) to project in full color the information required for driving. Driver can manually select ON/OFF for this HUD and customize the displayed contents. In addition to driving information and warnings, such as lane departure, the displayed contents include navigation and audio information through a link with the center display, and multiple types of information can be displayed at the same time.

 

A BOSE premium sound system is used for the speakers. The all-new Outlander is equipped with a sound system consisting of 10 speakers. Combining large door woofers with dual subwoofers provides powerful deep bass and a high-quality sound like a live performance.

The all-new Mitsubishi Outlander is a family SUV that offers three-row, seven seats, which is unique in its class. The seats can be flexibly arranged with multiple configurations to suit the number of passengers and their luggage. The second-row seats have a sliding and reclining function, as well as a 4:2:4 split division, allowing two adult passengers to comfortably sit in the second row even when carrying long items such as skis.

Space for storing smartphones is provided in the center console tray, center console side pockets, driver’s seat back pocket, and quarter trim pockets. The center console tray also has a wireless phone charging function (15W) that charges smartphones when placed on it. USB charging ports Types C and A are provided, respectively, on the front and back of the center console.

Advanced driver-assistance system and safety features

MI-PILOT Assist integrates Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) and Lane Keep Assist (LKA), and supports driving operation by maintaining the distance between vehicles and keeping the vehicle in the center of the lane. Vehicles equipped with navigation link system can read the speed signs to automatically change the set speed and utilize the navigation map information to automatically adjust the vehicle speed to that appropriate for curves and forks in expressways and other situations. To reduce troublesome setting operations while driving in heavy traffic on expressways, the vehicle can automatically move forward within about 30 seconds after stopping.

For the airbags, a front center airbag for the driver’s seat and side airbags for the second-row seats are standard equipped, and a total of 11 airbags are installed. In case of a side collision, the front center airbag deploys between the driver’s seat and front passenger seat.

Mitsubishi Connect is installed as a car support system that allows users to enjoy a more comfortable car life and a safe driving experience. To protect the safety of the driver, a button can be pressed to request aid from the call center if the vehicle breaks down or is involved in an accident, and it automatically reports when an airbag is deployed. It also handles a variety of incidents, such as generating a vehicle theft warning and reporting vehicle position information to the user if the vehicle is stolen.

Further, operation by smartphone can be used to display the vehicle’s parked position or to cause the vehicle’s lights to flash to show where it is parked. Many convenient functions are provided, such as remote operation that can be used to start the engine and turn on the air conditioner before getting in to make the cabin comfortable during cold winters and hot summers, as well as unlocking the doors from a remote location. To manage driving by family, the user can also receive notices when the vehicle is driven outside of a set time period, above a set speed, or outside a set area.

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About the Author

Automotive journalist. Professional work on dsf.my and automacha.com. Personal writing found at driveeveryday.me. Instagram: @driveeveryday



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