Let’s be candid.
Mitsubishi is probably not the first name you think of when you think of cars and SUVs.
That may change.
Mitsu…once known for a mixed bag of tricks including the pocket-rocket rallye champion “Evo”, is back with a more well-rounded lineup…a rapidly growing dealer network…and Japan’s longest warranty…. 10-year / 100K mile limited power train coverage.
We had a chance to test the top-dog Outlander…a 224 HP 3.0 6-cylinder with what Mitsubishi calls “all-wheel-control” and a six-speed automatic.
With a $3,350 GT Touring package, our Outlander listed right in the mid $30’s…and included nav with two free annual updates, forward collision and lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control, along with heated leather seating, moonroof, heated folding side mirrors, and a 3,500 towing capacity.
This is a “Mama Bear-sized” CUV…small enough to easily zip through heavy traffic, yet big enough to have a folding third row that might be tight for adults, but can easily accommodate a couple of kids.
Regular gas mileage is about what you’d expect with a six….20 city and 27 highway.
So….how is Mitsubishi going to compete with all the big guys in an ever-crowded market?
We’ll see how it plays out, but for now it appears that they’re going with that always welcome formula of trying to offer more….for less.
While our test Outlander listed at $35K, you can opt for their 4-cylinder and still get leather and third-row seating in the mid-$20’s.
Content…pricing…warranty…plus the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety’s “Top Safety Pick” status just might be what it takes to put Mitsubishi back on America’s shopping list.
As one of Japan’s top 20 companies, I wouldn’t be in a hurry to bet against them.