STOP-START OUTLANDER STILL SOMETHING TO ASPIRE TO

With pandemic, war and bad weather chipping away at our lifestyles, automobile
manufacturers, with their reliance on semi-conductors, have suffered more than most
industries.

Mitsubishi is no exception and with shrinking supplies of tech equipment for its best-selling
Outlander SUV, and increasing material, manufacturing and logistic costs, has reduced
variants’ standard specification for a 22.5 model year.

For example, with the mid-range Aspire model (the test vehicle) has a full digital driver
display, has gone back to the seven-inch multi-information display, replacing the 12.3-inch
digital instrument cluster, the maker says, to optimise production and minimise supply
delays.

However, there is still much to mention about the popular 22MY Aspire AWD, which sells
for $43,990, plus on-road costs. Mitsubishi is the first to admit the new Outlander is a five-
plus-two-seater rather than a seven-seater and has been quick to use this as a selling
point.

The Outlander also recently gained top marks for adult and child occupant safety, safety
assist systems and pedestrian and cyclist protection in the independent ANCAP 2022
testing protocols, thus earning a top five-star rating.

All Outlanders are covered by Mitsubishi’s ten-year 200,000-kilometre warranty and
capped price servicing, with all scheduled services done through the authorised Mitsubishi
Motors Dealer Network. Otherwise, it’s a five-year / 100,000km one.

STYLING
The new Outlander shares a chassis with the new Nissan X-Trail, which is some way off,
and according to Mitsubishi, continues the tradition of an authentic SUV with a bold and
distinctive exterior, including ‘muscular fenders and chiseled lines of the next generation
Dynamic Shield grille’.

Designers have done a real job on the front end, with dominant squiggles of chrome
descending from bonnet to bumper bracketing automatic levelling headlamps with
adaptive driving beam, and incorporating daytime running lights.

This feature, to my mind, can either add to, or detract from the look of the vehicle,
depending on the body colour behind it. Too flashy, it is not totally to my taste. However,
the 20-inch alloy wheels with two-tone finish do complement the total set-up.

INTERIOR
Comfort and convenience are to the fore with the newly crafted cabin clothed in classy
materials, including Microsuede / synthetic leather seat trim, leather steering wheel and
gearshift knob and power driver’s seat with lumbar support.

As mentioned above, the new Outlander is a five-plus-two-seater rather than a seven-
seater, with the third row having limited leg, head and toe room, plus upright backrest and
is best suited to small kids.

Headrests can be stored in an underfloor cubby and there’s also a space-saver spare
wheel underneath the rear of the vehicle. As for cargo, the maker quotes 163 litres with
the third row in place, 478 litres with the third row folded, and 1473 litres with the second
and third rows folded.

INFOTAINMENT
All 2022 Outlanders feature more technology and connectivity than previously, with
wireless Apple CarPlay and wired Android Auto now standard. Instrument layout and
controls have been simplified in line with modern design.

Sadly, as stated above a planned 12.3-inch full colour digital instrument cluster has been
abandoned in favour of the 7-inch colour multi-information display due to supply
constraints.

There is a 10.8-inch full-colour windscreen head-up display as standard on the Aspire
models and above, and wireless smartphone charger.

ENGINES / TRANSMISSIONS
A newly developed 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine, delivering 135 kW of power at 6000
rpm and 245 Nm of torque at 3600 rpm, is mated with a continuously variable automatic
transmission.

Sport mode with eight pre-set gear ratios is available via steering wheel-mounted paddle
shifts.

SAFETY
All new Outlanders have earned a top five-star ANCP safety rating on the latest 2022
tests.

They already enjoyed a comprehensive set of active safety measures, including predictive
forward collision mitigation with pedestrian detection, driver attention alert, land change
assist, emergency stop signal and emergency brake assist.

In addition, all Outlanders have hill start assist and hill descent control, active stability
control, trailer stability assist, traction control, anti-lock braking, electronic brakeforce
distribution and brake override.

DRIVING
The new Outlander may have run into tough going but there’s no lack of new tech and
equipment for Mitsubishi’s popular SUV.

An upgraded powerplant ensures smooth going without any fireworks, after all it is only a
2.5-litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder unit taking on more than 1700kg of metal.
Generally, driving dynamics are adequate.

At hand is a new drive-by-wire transmission with new CVT logic, delivering a more direct
shift pattern under large throttle inputs, while retaining smooth cruising and fuel efficiency
of the CVT.

Mitsubishi’s motorsport-developed Super All-Wheel Control all-wheel drive system serves
up six drive modes – sport, gravel, snow, mud, eco and normal (default) – that adjusts the
4WD system to suit the going.

This re-engineered system includes active yaw control with rear-wheel brake control to
independently act on all four wheels and a new hydraulic direct coupling device for faster
all-wheel response.

SUMMARY
Despite the shortfall in technical upgrades, the Mitsubishi Outlander still has plenty for the
discerning mid-size SUV buyer to Aspire to, not least the seven-seat capacity and
extensive warranty plan.

AT A GLANCE

MODEL LINE-UP
Outlander ES 5-seat 2WD: $34,490
Outlander ES 7-seat 2WD: $35,490
Outlander ES 5-seat 4WD: $36,990
Outlander LS 7-seat 2WD: $37,990
Outlander LS 7-seat 4WD: $40,490
Outlander Aspire 7-seat 2WD: $41,490
Outlander Aspire 7-seat 4WD: $43,990
Outlander Exceed 7-seat 4WD: $48,490
Outlander Exceed Tourer 7-seat 4WD: $50,990
Note: These prices do not include government or dealer delivery charges. Contact your
local Mitsubishi dealer for drive-away prices.

SPECIFICATIONS (Outlander Aspire 2.5L 4-cylinder petrol, constantly variable
transmission, AWD)

ENGINE:
Capacity: 2.488 litres
Configuration: Four cylinders in line
Maximum Power: 135 kW @ 6000 rpm
Maximum Torque: 245 Nm @ 3600 rpm
Fuel Type: Petrol 91 RON
Combined Fuel Cycle (ADR 81/02): 8.1 L/100km
CO2 emissions 185 g / km

DRIVELINE: CVT with 8sp Sport mode

DIMENSIONS, WEIGHT AND CAPACITIES:
Length: 4710 mm
Wheelbase: 2706 mm
Width: 1862 mm
Height: 1745 mm
Turning Circle: 10.6 metres
Kerb Mass: 1725 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity: 55 litres

BRAKES:
Front: Ventilated disc
Rear: Disc

STANDARD WARRANTY:
Five years / 100,000 kilometres

RATINGS
Looks: 5/10
Performance: 6/10
Safety: 8/10
Thirst: 6/10
Practicality: 7/10
Comfort: 7/10
Tech: 5/10
Value: 7/10

About Derek Ogden

On graduating with an honours degree in applied science in London, Derek Ogden worked for the BBC in local radio and several British newspapers as a production journalist and writer. Derek moved to Australia in 1975 and worked as a sub-editor with The Courier Mail and Sunday Mail in Brisbane, moving to the Gold Coast Bulletin in 1980 where he continued as a production journalist. He was the paper's motoring editor for more than 20 years, taking the weekly section from a few pages at the back of the book to a full-colour liftout of up to 36 pages. He left the publication in 2009.
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