Mitsubishi’s approach to renewing the Mitsubishi Outlander is sensible, mature and single-minded. This new model is slightly shorter and lower than the previous one, but most importantly it is 100kg lighter, following a structural redesign of the all-steel body-in-white.
All models of the Outlander come with MMC’s ‘clean diesel’ 2.2-litre four-cylinder turbodiesel, which is now Euro 6 emissions compliant. It makes more low-end torque than it did thanks to changes to the valve timing and turbocharger. Interestingly, it’s less powerful than it used to be: 147bhp, whereas before it produced 174bhp.
But with that deficit offset against the more accessible torque and the lower kerb weight, the new Outlander is, says MMC, only marginally slower than the old version and still competitive with its rivals.
The big claim is on efficiency. In a class where fuel economy in the 40s is considered pretty reasonable, the Outlander combines intelligent four-wheel drive with around 50mpg and CO2 emissions as low as 140g/km. At least, that’s the claim of some manual versions.
Mitsubishi’s six-speed torque converter automatic gearbox replaces the dual-clutch ‘SST’ gearbox found in the old two-pedal Outlander. It’s a significant change that means new Outlander owners get the benefits of torque multiplication, off road and when towing, that SST-equipped Outlander owners missed, and with only a small efficiency penalty.
The four-wheel drive system is, as it was, controlled by an electronically operated clutch, and its chassis is made up of MacPherson struts at the front and multi-links at the back. The struts have new top mounts and are connected to a new subframe, while at the rear the links have been redesigned for greater wheel travel and less unsprung mass.
Both changes, says Mitsubishi, contribute to enhanced ride quality in particular.