New 2019 Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid Brings Electrification to the Masses
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With over 100,000 sold in Europe and record growth in China and other major global markets, the Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid is now the market leader in the US, cementing its position as the best-selling electrified crossover in the world.
Arriving in the US a year ago, this smart looking and traditionally profiled small SUV quickly captured the attention of consumers and the motor press. Just named The Green Car Journal’s 2019 SUV of the Year, the Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid is clearly lapping more established brands in the US.
In fact, short of a premium priced BMW or Volvo small SUVs, the Mitsubishi seems to be dominating this segment with a strong value proposition and solid technology. The Outlander PHEV runs on two 80 horsepower motors on the front and back wheels integrated by a new highly rated All Wheel Drive system, and a 2.0 liter inline 4 gas-powered engine to supplement the batteries.
The Outlander can be charged with a conventional home or commercial standard 240 EV plug or a fast charging DC system. Going one better than the standard hybrid configuration where a computer function decides when the gas engine kicks in to recharge the batteries, the Mitsubishi system also has a push-button mode allowing the driver to run continuously on gas power to recharge the battery, and recover regenerative energy while braking and running.
Though the on-demand gas power is not the most efficient way to charge the batteries for electric power, it does relieve range anxiety about battery power, especially on longer highway runs.
While personal taste is subjective, the now familiar Mitsubishi Outlander exterior is still quite contemporary updated with aluminum accents, more evocative and dynamic character lines and, complex halogen and LED lighting assemblies front and back. The total package is both modern and fresh, and yet unmistakably an SUV with all the convenience and flexibility it has come represent, as the new dominant vehicle format.
Inside the driving position is commanding with firmly comfortable front buckets and a bench row 60-40 fold-down split back seat. The high profile SUV design gives this Mitsubishi excellent visibility all around, and the Outlander interior is notable a cavernous 78 cubic feet of cargo space with the rear seats down. in addition to 1074 lbs of on-board load capacity, the Outlander PHEV is also rated to trailer 1,500 lb.
Strong on standard equipment the deluxe sport GT Outlander has the complete suite of tech gear and a central control panel 7” touchscreen that interfaces with personal devices for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, and a 710 –watt premium Rockford Fosgate sound system. More on the utility side of the equation is a 1500-watt AC power supply with a couple of outlets to run power-tools or tailgate margarita parties.
Collision avoidance protection and driving convenience are provided by active-safety features like forward collision warnings and adaptive-crusie control.
The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV combined hybrid electric and gas system delivers an effective and impressive 74 mpg rating with a well-equipped price of around $35,000 eligible for a $5,836 tax credit.