Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Review | Ultimate Guide

Outlander PHEV

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Changes

The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV has been the most popular plug-in hybrid SUV in Europe for years. In the Netherlands, it has been the top selling vehicle in the PHEV category for a number of years. While those people don’t mind paying 20-30% more, ones from the United States recently got the opportunity to buy our own. Below, I’ve outlined all model years of Outlander PHEV’s and the changes they went through:

  • 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (all new in North America with SEL and GT trim levels)
  • 2019 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (rear passengers now have air vents and a USB port, GT models now come standard with LED headlights, redesigned wheels, grill, and front bumper, factory warranty now covers battery degradation, batter size increase from 12.0kW to 13.8kW)

Buying a Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

If you are in the market for a plug-in hybrid SUV, sadly there’s very few options. The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV seems to be the only serious contender when it comes to this category of automobiles. Luckily for you, the Outlander PHEV proved to be a great vehicles in markets outside of the USA (as mentioned earlier in Europe). 

Buying an Outlander PHEV is quite simple and does not require going to any special dealerships. The car comes with everything you’d need to make a great family car, or an off-road tracker.

 While the car is mostly brand new in the United States, it has seen a decrease in value since it first came on the market in 2018. I’ve outlined the price differences between NEW and USED Outlander PHEV’s. 

New Outlander PHEV Prices:

2018: $34,595-$40,295

2019: $35,795-$41,495

Used Outlander PHEV Prices:​

2018: $24,000-$30,000

2019: $30,000-$35,000

buying NEW Outlander PHEV's
NEW Outlander PHEV's
buying USED Outlander PHEV's
USED Outlander PHEV's

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Specs

  • Years in Production: 2018-Present
  • Trim Levels: SEL and GT
  • Engine: 2.0L cylinder
  • Battery Capacity: 12.0kW-13.8kW
  • Fuel Type: Gasoline & Electric
  • Fuel Capacity: 11.3
  • Fuel Economy: 27 city / 23 highway
  • Electric Range: 22-26 miles
  • Charge Times: 10-16 hrs at 110-120v, 3.5 hours at 220-240v, and 25-35 minutes at 440v.

Why the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV?

The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV is a unique vehicle. Unlike most SUV’s (including BMW, Mercede, Audi, and a few others), none are serious contenders in terms of tech and EV range. The Outlander PHEV gets over 20 miles of EV range and can even fast charge (one of a kind).
 
While many SUV’s sacrifice fuel efficiency over space and a styling, the Outlander takes a different approach.
 
This is one of the most fuel efficient plug-in hybrids you can buy right now. It can get over 30mpg on the highway, yet still have the power to tow up to 1,500 lbs.
 
Being in the US for 2 years so far, the prices have dropped quite a bit already. It’s (in AvtoWow’s opinion) the ULTIMATE family-friendly SUV.
rear view of Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

Things to LIKE about the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

At first glance, the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV looks like any other Outlander out there. When we took a closer look, it turns out there’s quite a few differences. Aside from the obvious, Mitsubishi aimed towards making this car a unique vehicle among all other competitors.
 
At least in the United States, you won’t find any plug-in hybrid, let alone a plug-in SUV, like it. Check out the list of the things to LIKE about the Outlander PHEV:
 
  1. It comes with all-wheel drive. The Outlander PHEV’s one other main competitor (the Kia Niro PHEV), comes with front-wheel drive. The all-wheel drive comes handy when needing extra traction in the rain, snow, or mud. Managing to get good fuel efficiency despite the drivetrain is an achievement of its own.
  2. Prices are very reasonable. The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV has an attractive starting price. At just under $36K, you get a plug-in hybrid SUV/Crossover that gets decent fuel efficiency, 20-30 miles of EV driving, and excellent reliability. Even if you managed to get the car fully-loaded, you won’t be paying any more than $45K. Don’t forget that if you live in the United States, they still have Federal Tax Incentives to get $3,000-$4,000 tax rebates. States like California, offer even more rebates on top of the federal ones. You could land a brand new Outlander for less than $30K.
  3. Excellent transmission and transition between electric and gasoline power. The Outlander PHEV shares an identical drivetrain as the Chevrolet Volt. The 2.0L engine acts more as a generator than anything else. Due to the drivetrain, the transition between gas and electric is rather seamless.
  4. Is capable of towing. Hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicles aren’t meant for towing. Ask any manufacturer that sells a hybrid car and they will say the vehicle wasn’t designed to tow. Despite all that, Mitsubishi made sure that the Outlander PHEV can still tow up to 1,500 lbs.
  5. Pretty good fuel economy in both highway and city driving. While the EPA has not posted their official fuel economy ratings for this car (I don’t know why), users on various forums have reported various MPG. It can get a 25-30 MPG in mixed driving conditions.
  6. Fast charging is available. While it may be counter productive to include a fast charging option on a vehicle with 20-30 miles of electric range, we’re not complaining. So far, its the only vehicle on the market that can let you charge to 80% in 25 minutes.
  7. Battery charge mode lets you charge while you drive. Just as it sounds, by pressing a button, you can recharge your cars battery to near 100%. While this may reduce your fuel economy by a noticeable margin (due to the engine working harder), you can make it where you’ll never need to plug the car in.
Downsides of the Outlander PHEV

Things NOT TO LIKE about the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

Despite all the positive things we’ve said about the Outlander PHEV above, its NOT a perfect car. Let’s outline the key points you should take into consideration:
 
  1. The interior has some cheap plastic pieces. You’ll notice right away that even on the fully-loaded GT trim, you can see and even feel where cost cutting took place. Despite that, its still a reliable vehicle!
  2. The fuel economy is good for an SUV/Crossover, but underwhelming. The plug-in hybrid version of the Outlander gets overs 30mpg in mixed driving. The non-hybrid Outlander (25 mpg city and 30 mpg highway) and you’ll notice the hybrid doesn’t do all that well. As you can see, the difference between the two is small.
  3. Acceleration from 0 to 60mph is disappointing. How about a little under 10 seconds… that’s not that good. All thought its more than fine, you’d think it would have more power and a quicker sprint to 60.
  4. No third-row seating. Due to the 12kW lithium-ion battery, the third-row seating is unavailable. It went from being a great mini-van replacement to not being one. If this part is important to you, you might want to consider getting the non-hybrid version.

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV's Closest Competitors

This part took less time than with other plug-in hybrid reviews. The Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid is one of a few plug-in SUV/Crossovers currently on the market. Below, I’ve outlined the two closest competitors:

2018-Present Kia Niro PHEV

Outlander PHEV compare do Niro PHEV

In 2019, the Kia Niro PHEV is the only competing Crossover currently on the market. Kia managed to give it some of the best aerodynamics in the industry. 

See how it stacks-up against the Outlander PHEV:  

  • Battery Capacity: 8.9kW
  • Fuel Capacity: 11.3 gallons
  • Fuel Type: PHEV
  • Engine: 1.6L 4-Cylinder
  • MPG: 48 city/44 highway
  • Electric Range: 26 miles
  • Charge Times: 6 hrs @ 110-120v and 2.5 hrs @ 220-240v
  • New Values: Starting at $27,500 
  • Used Values: $24,000-$35,000
  • Drivetrain: FWD

2019-Present Subaru Crosstrek Hybrid

Outlander PHEV compared to the Crosstrek Hybrid

Subaru has been one of the few manufacturers shying away from the EV and PHEV game. However, the tides are starting to turn. 

Their most fuel efficient vehicle to date (the Crosstrek), is now available in a plug-in hybrid version. It just happens to be a close competitor with the Outlander. See specs below to compare:

  • Battery Capacity: 8.8kW
  • Fuel Capacity: 13.2 gallons
  • Fuel Type: PHEV
  • Engine: 2.0L 4-Cylinder
  • MPG: N/A
  • Electric Range: 17 miles
  • Charge Times: 5 hrs @ 110-120v and 2 hrs @ 220-240v
  • New Values: Starting at $34,995
  • Drivetrain: AWD

In Conclusion

So there you have it, the guide on the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV. So far, its one of a kind in a few areas, and we predict more and more automakers will be following Mitsubishi’s foot steps.
 
If you thought buying a Tesla Model X would be the ONLY way you can get some “EV action!”, think again. For 1/5 of the price, the Outlander can seat up to 5, drive 20-30 miles in EV mode, charge to 100% in less than 45 minutes, and give you GREAT off-roading capabilities!
 
Despite some cheap materials used primarily for cost cutting, it’s a great plug-in hybrid vehicle.
 
The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV gets the “Seal of Approval from AvtoWow!”.

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