But what is it?
The 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander diesel automatic was the fastest selling car in June. This is according to data collected and used with permission from the wonderful people of Auto Trader.
To put this, in some perspective, the Outlander took just 19 days to sell on average, followed by Mazda’s CX-5 (2016 diesel manual) which also took an average of 19 days to sell. Audi’s A4 Avant estate (2016 diesel automatic) at 20 days, and in fourth position, the manual version of the Outlander (2015 diesel manual), at 21 days.
So, the pole position at least in June was squarely won by the Outlander, however, the sales figures won’t tell us if it’s any good. We are fully aware, people buy cars for number of reasons, and most of those reasons has nothing to do with functionality of what the car was made for. In The UK, you buy SUVs for school drops. The bigger the cash flow you generate, the bigger the SUV you buy, pure and simple.
The Mitsubishi Outlander diesel is the sometimes invited to the party cousin to the Outlander Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle or just PHEV for short. The latter stands out as one of the few mainstream plug-in hybrid SUVs currently available, however the diesel version finds itself surrounded by few competitors challenging its place on the market.
As with the PHEV version, the diesel Outlander saw a light upgrade for the 2017 model year. Its MacPherson front strut and multi-link rear suspension were trimmed to create a greater degree of stability on the road, and much needed attention was given to reduce noise in the cabin.
There are obvious differences between the PHEV and the diesel cousin, let’s ignore the obvious one though (powertrain), the former is offered strictly as a five-seater, while the latter can seat up to seven.
Pricing difference is the next one, you are looking to pay around £25,955 for an entry level, the PHEV range starts at £35,330 – although that excludes Government grants available for plug-ins and doesn’t take into account cheaper company tax rates.
The PHEV model might offer the ability to travel 33 miles on electricity alone, but the 145bhp, 266lb ft 2.2-litre diesel engine shouldn’t be discounted or labelled uneconomical, either. Combined with four-wheel drive and an automatic transmission, it’ll manage 48.7mpg on the combined cycle.
If we compare the mpg with other competitors such as Nissan X-Trail will (47.9mpg), Skoda Kodiaq (49.6mpg), Then Outlander, although not outstanding, is in par with competition.
Yes, there are few, which needs to be mentioned. The engine is powerful enough to allow the Outlander to reach the national speed limit from standstill before you reach the point of killing your self due to boredom.
However, you’ll need to be prepared for the grumbling racket that comes when your foot goes any where close to the throttle. Even at a steady cruise, you can still pick it out, combine it with noise of engine and accompanying road and wind noise, if reaching the speed limit, doesn’t get you, this might be enough to push you over.
There is a considerable Body roll through faster bends which was always going to come with the SUV-shaped territory, so we can’t fault it too much for this. The steering is well weighted, and the ride isn’t bad, either, with the revised suspension working well to smooth out smaller imperfections in the road surface, just don’t hit any potholes, beacuse if the boredom mentioned above doesn’t get you, the shudder that will run through your body, will.
As a means for transporting your average-sized family and all their ungodly clutter, the Outlander diesel’s cabin is above par. The 591-litre boot is large and easy to access, and even with the third row of seats in place you still will have a useable 128-litres of luggage capacity.
Head and leg room is abundant in the second row, but that’s all the good stuff I have unfortunately. The cabin isn’t the most materially rich place in the world, with plenty of cheap plastics.
The infotainment system, is out of date compared to those offered by rival manufacturers, however features such as satellite navigation, DAB radio and Bluetooth connectivity are preset.
The Outlander provides enough to cover the basics. It’s large, seven-seat SUV and provides ample space and practicality. it’s relatively comfortable and it won’t cost you an arm and a leg to run than its immediate rivals.
However, all above mentioned benefits as a selling point, merely covers the basics, which to be frank simply isn’t enough to make the Outlander stand out.
That particularly comes true when you consider there are other seven-seat SUVs out there such as Nissan X-Trail and Skoda Kodiaq that offer far superior-interiors, far more advanced and impressive technology and greater levels of refinement for similar money.