A soft-roader to put Mitsubishi back on track
The decision to offer the same comfort features on every Irish version is worthy of praise, and it’s a well-equipped offering that includes dualzone air-conditioning, cruise control and Bluetooth.
The four-wheel-drive versions also come with a third row of seats, claiming to be a seven-seater. Frankly, it’s not – this is a five-plus-two. Even in the second row of seats headroom starts to become an issue, and by the time you manage to get into the third row it’s a ridiculously tight squeeze. It’s fine to have them in reserve for a very rare short journey, but if you need seven seats for family motoring then a proper people carrier is your only answer. This will not suffice.
There is better news in terms of the driving dynamics. The Outlander does wallow in corners but there’s enough positive feel to the car that it becomes rather fun to drive. It’s not fast, but the 2.2-litre diesel seems well able to propel this car. It also boasts impressive emissions that will mean savings when it comes to motor tax, even after the recent punitive budget. Emissions for the two-wheel-drive entry model are a very credible 126g/km, while the four-wheel-drive version increases that by just 14g/km, which is remarkable.
Relatively low emissions
The chief selling-points of this car are going to be its rugged looks, its equipment levels and relatively low emissions. Those are enough to drive it into our shortlist of soft-roaders. The new Hyundai Santa Fe is probably its closest rival, also offering a similar third row of seating and softer, more urban-oriented styling. The Hyundai has a firm following already and that will secure its sales position at the top of the full-size soft-roaders in the coming years. But the Outlander is worth a test drive and is competitively priced. With its arrival the Mitsubishi brand is suddenly back on the map.
The lowdown Mitsubishi Outlander
2,268cc 16v four-cylinder intercooled turbodiesel engine putting out 148bhp at 3,500rpm and 360Nm of torque from 1,500rpm with a six-speed manual transmission .
0-100km/h 10.2 seconds, max speed 200km/h.
combined 5.4l/100km (52.3 mpg).
140g/km (motor tax €280 from January 1st).
Only one well-equipped version offered with standard features including: cruise control; Bluetooth connection and voice control for phone and audio; dualzone auto air-con; electric windows; alloy wheels; front foglights; roof rails; ABS with EBD and Brake Assist; front, side and curtain airbags; driver’s knee airbag; hill-start assist; active stability and traction control; third row of seats with four-wheel-drive versions.
Hyundai Santa Fe Executive 4WD 2.2D €41,995; Toyota Rav-4 4WD 2.2 D-4D Sol €36,445; Volkswagen Tiguan 2.0TDi 140bhp 4motion Sport €35,490.
€36,950 (from January 1st)