Mitsubishi has revealed that it will replace its ancient Outlander medium SUV next year with a car that’s larger on the inside, bolder on the outside and coming after the Toyota RAV4 in the technology stakes.
Set to drop in 2021, the all-new Outlander will replace a car that’s more than a decade old, and originally based on a Mitsubishi Lancer platform.
“The all-new next-generation Outlander will be bigger, bolder and better than ever before, and will be the quietest and best-equipped Mitsubishi ever sold in Australia,” the company said in a statement.
As part of the Nissan-Renault-Mitsubishi Alliance, Mitsubishi will – as outlined in this plan released last month – defer to Nissan when it comes to the underpinnings of the mid-sized Outlander, which will reportedly mirror those found underneath the next-generation X-Trail (below).
If that’s true, then the Outlander will actually beat the X-Trail to market using its own technology, given that the X-Trail is expected to soldier on for a couple more years yet in its freshly updated guise.
Engine tech for the next Outlander could go a variety of ways. The new platform will be capable of offering front- and all-wheel-drive, while the latest 1.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine from the current Eclipse Cross, along with its continuously variable transmission, is a pretty good bet.
Expect, too, the Outlander PHEV plug-in hybrid drivetrain, with its recently renewed 2.4-litre petrol engine and rear-mounted electric motor, to be carried over at least in spirit to the new model, though upgraded battery and electric motor tech could potentially be poached from the Renault division to improve the PHEV’s performance.
The Engelberg Tourer concept (below), which debuted at the 2019 Geneva show, is a good pointer to both the next Outlander’s hybrid intentions and to the continuation of the bold styling language that now adorns the ASX, Triton and Pajero Sport.
As well, the seven-seat Engelberg Tourer suggests that third-row seating will again be available in the mid-sized Outlander.
“Loaded with technology and significant interior refinements, this game-changing vehicle will surprise many,” claims the company.
It also confirmed that a significant mid-life upgrade to the slow-selling Eclipse Cross (above middle) is imminent, with new interior and exterior styling and updated infotainment.
Larger than the ASX and smaller than the Outlander, the Eclipse Cross has failed to fire in the eyes of consumers, with sales at around one-third of those of the other two SUVs.