Mitsubishi Outlander

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For the vehicle known in the United States as the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport, see Mitsubishi RVR.
Mitsubishi Outlander
Mitsubishi Outlander 24G 0490.JPG
Manufacturer Mitsubishi Motors
Also called Mitsubishi Airtrek (2001–05)
Production 2001–present
Designer Olivier Boulay (Outlander)
Body and chassis
Class Crossover SUV
Body style 4-door SUV
Layout Front engine, front-/four-wheel drive

The Mitsubishi Outlander is a mid-size crossover manufactured by Japanese automaker Mitsubishi Motors. It was originally known as the Mitsubishi Airtrek when it was introduced in Japan in 2001, and was based on the Mitsubishi ASX concept vehicle exhibited at the 2001 North American International Auto Show. It was sold at Mitsubishi Japan dealership chain called Car Plaza. The ASX (Active Sports Crossover) represented Mitsubishi's approach to the industry wide SUV trend for retaining the all-season and off-road abilities offered by a high ground clearance and four-wheel drive, while still offering car-like levels of emissions, economy and size.[1]

The original Airtrek name was chosen to "describe the vehicle’s ability to transport its passengers on adventure-packed journeys in a 'free-as-a-bird' manner",[2] and was "coined from Air and Trek to express the idea of footloose, adventure-filled motoring pleasure."[3] The Outlander nameplate which replaced it evoked a "feeling of journeying to distant, unexplored lands in search of adventure."[2]

The second generation of the vehicle was introduced in 2005 and all markets including Japan adopted the Outlander name, although production of the older version continued in parallel. It was built on the company's GS platform, and used various engines developed by Mitsubishi, Volkswagen and PSA Peugeot Citroën. PSA's Citroën C-Crosser and Peugeot 4007, which are manufactured by Mitsubishi in Japan, are badge engineered versions of the Outlander.[4]

As part of the third generation line-up, Mitsubishi launched in January 2013 a plug-in hybrid model called Outlander P-HEV. As of December 2014, about 49,000 units have been sold worldwide, with Europe as the leading market with 28,177 units sold, followed by Japan with 19,672 units. The Outlander P-HEV was the top selling plug-in electric vehicle in Europe in 2014 with 19,980 units sold that year,[5] and also ranked as the world's third best selling plug-in car after the all-electrics Tesla Model S and Nissan Leaf.[6]

First generation[edit]

First generation
2003-2005 Mitsubishi Outlander -- 03-16-2012 2.JPG
Also called Mitsubishi Airtrek
Production 2001–08 (Airtrek)
2003–06 (Outlander)
Assembly Kurashiki, Okayama, Japan (Mizushima Plant)
Body and chassis
Platform CU2W/CU4W/CU5W[clarification needed]
Related Mitsubishi Lancer
Mitsubishi Grandis
Mitsubishi RVR
Engine 4G63 2.0 L DOHC I4
4G64 2.4 L DOHC GDI I4
4G63T 2.0 L DOHC I4 turbo
4G69 2.4 L I4 (Outlander)

5-speed manual
'4-/5-speed INVECS-II semi-auto

5-speed (turbo)
Wheelbase 2,625 mm (103.3 in)
Length 4,410 mm (173.6 in) (Airtrek)
4,545 mm (178.9 in) (Outlander)
Width 1,750–1,780 mm (68.9–70.1 in)
Height 1,540–1,585 mm (60.6–62.4 in) (Airtrek)
1,605–1,685 mm (63.2–66.3 in) (Outlander)
Curb weight 1,605–1,745 kg (3,538–3,847 lb)
2001 Mitsubishi Airtrek (JDM)

The Airtrek was first introduced to the Japanese market on June 20, 2001, priced from ¥1.7–2.3 million. It offered a choice of either a 126 PS (93 kW) 4G63 2.0 L or a 139 PS (102 kW) 4G64 2.4 L GDI, mated to a standard INVECS-II 4-speed semi-automatic transmission. Both front- and four-wheel drive were available. The four-wheel drive version uses open differentials for the front and rear axles, with a viscous coupling unit for the center differential. A high performance model, using a detuned version of the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution's 4G63T 2.0 L I4 turbo, was introduced in 2002.[7] The engine produced 240 PS (180 kW) and 343 N·m (253 lb·ft), although in export markets the Outlander version's output was reduced to 202 PS (149 kW) and 303 N·m (223 lb·ft). The return of four-cylinder engines under 2.0 liters offered Japanese buyers a vehicle that was in compliance with Japanese regulations concerning exterior dimensions and engine displacement, however, the exterior dimensions exceed Japanese regulations for the "compact" designation.

The Outlander arrived in 2003 in North America, replacing the Mitsubishi Montero Sport, with a modified front grille and headlights which increased the overall length by approximately 130 millimetres (5.1 in), and the two models were manufactured in parallel thereafter. It shared its platform with the Mitsubishi Grandis, also introduced in 2003.[citation needed] A version of the 4G64 powerplant was offered first, while a 4G69 2.4 L SOHC MIVEC I4 producing 120 kW (160 PS) and 220 N·m (160 lb·ft), and the turbocharged 4G63T appeared in 2004. All had the option of front- or four-wheel drive.

In several South American markets it was known as the Montero Outlander, to benefit from an association with the strong-selling Mitsubishi Montero Sport.

2006 Mitsubishi Outlander (US)

Second generation[edit]

Second generation
2nd Mitsubishi Outlander.jpg
Production 2005–2013
Model years 2007–2013 (North America)
Assembly Kurashiki, Okayama, Japan (Mizushima Plant)
Born, Netherlands (NedCar)
Kaluga, Russia (PCMA plant)
Body and chassis
Platform Mitsubishi GS platform
Related Mitsubishi Lancer
Citroen C-Crosser
Peugeot 4007
Mitsubishi RVR
Mitsubishi Grandis
Dodge Caliber
Engine 4B11 2.0 L DOHC MIVEC I4 (Japan, New Zealand)
4B12 2.4 L DOHC MIVEC I4
6B31 3.0 L SOHC MIVEC V6
VW 2.0 L TDI
PSA DW12 2.2 L HDI
4N14 2.3 L Di-D MIVEC
Transmission 5-speed manual
6-speed manual
6-speed INVECS-III semi-auto
6-speed twin-clutch transmission
Wheelbase 2,670 mm (105.1 in)
2008-09 (International): 2,830 mm (111.4 in)
Length 2006-07 (International)/2007-09 (US/Canada): 4,640 mm (182.7 in)
2008-09 (International): 4,765 mm (187.6 in)
2010- (International): 4,665 mm (183.7 in)
Width 1,800 mm (70.9 in)
2008-09 (International): 1,795 mm (70.7 in)
Height 2006-07 (International)/2007-09 (US/Canada): 1,680 mm (66.1 in)
2008-09 (International): 1,655 mm (65.2 in)
2010-: 1,720 mm (67.7 in)
Curb weight 1,589–1,720 kg (3,503–3,792 lb)

On October 17, 2005, Mitsubishi launched the second generation model, dropping the Airtrek in Japan in favour of adopting the global name.[8] It features a new DOHC 2.4 L 16-valve MIVEC engine; INVECS-III continuously variable transmission (CVT), Mitsubishi's AWC system which features electronically controlled four wheel drive and stability control, on a stretched Mitsubishi GS platform. The North American version, powered by a newly designed 6B31 3.0 L V6 SOHC MIVEC was shown in April 2006 at the New York Auto Show prior to its release in October the same year. Due to the availability of a V6 engine, Mitsubishi returned to offering a shorter version of this vehicle, and reintroduced the Mitsubishi RVR February 17, 2010. The usage of a four-cylinder engine under 2.0 liters offers Japanese buyers a vehicle that was in compliance with Japanese regulations concerning exterior dimensions and engine displacement, which has tax advantages, giving buyers the ability to purchase a vehicle capable of seating seven people without paying the tax penalty of a larger engine.

The Outlander, which features Mitsubishi's RISE safety body, received a four star rating from the Euro NCAP car safety performance assessment programme.[9] One of its unique features is something Mitsubishi calls a "Flap-Fold Tailgate"; it is a two-piece tailgate integrated into the rear bumper that folds down for easy loading, while serving as a bench when the tailgate is open, able to accommodate up to 180 kg (400 lb)[10]

In its home market of Japan it was the best-selling SUV from October 2005 to March 2006,[11] while in the U.S. market it achieved 1,694 and 2,108 sales in November and December 2006, the first two full months it was available;[12][13] Mitsubishi ultimately hopes for at least 4,000 sales per month in the United States,[14] and after the cancellation of the Mitsubishi Grandis in model year 2011, the Outlander is now Mitsubishi's only MPV capable of carrying seven passengers with all wheel drive. In Chile, where both generations were on sale simultaneously, the new model was badged Outlander K2.

Facelifted European Outlander
2010 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS (US)
2011 Mitsubishi Outlander GT (US)

Increased demand for the new Mitsubishi Lancer, and the consequent effects on the capacity of the company's Mizushima production facility, have obliged Mitsubishi to reassess production of the Outlander. In September 2007, they announced that from 2008, production of European market Outlanders would be transferred from Nagoya to its NedCar plant in the Netherlands, while the Citroën C-Crosser and Peugeot 4007 would have their production transferred from Mizushima to Nagoya.[15]

The model was facelifted for the 2008 model year, although the 2007 grille carried over in the United States and Canada for 2008-09 until another facelift in the 2010 model year.

At the 2007 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, the company displayed a Mitsubishi Evolander (now known as Mitsubishi Outlander Ralliart) concept, powered by a 240 kW (330 PS) supercharged version of the vehicle's 6B31 V6 engine and equipped with suitably uprated suspension, brakes, wheels/tires, body kit and interior.[16] A second show car, an Outlander GT Prototype with a front grille based on the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X, was exhibited at the 2009 New York International Auto Show,[17] and formed the basis of the facelifted model introduced in late 2009.[18]

Along with a major facelift for the 2010 model year, the top end Outlander XLS (GT in the US) introduced a new colour MFD dashboard display and the Mitsubishi S-AWC AWD system. The lower trims retain the previous MFD and the less advanced AWC AWD system. Likewise, the interior was also slightly revised to incorporate leather into the dashboard trim and doors.

Third generation[edit]

Third generation
2013 Mitsubishi Outlander ZJ (MY14) ES 2WD Wagon (2014-12-26).jpg
Production 2012–
Model years 2013–
Assembly Okazaki, Aichi, Japan (Nagoya Plant)
Kaluga, Russia (PCMA Rus)
Body and chassis
Platform Mitsubishi GS platform
Engine 2.0L 4B11 I4 (PHEV)
2.0L 4J11 I4
2.4L 4B12 I4 [19]
2.4L 4J12 I4 [20]
2.2L 4N14 TD I4 [21]
3.0L 6B31 V6 (USA) [22]
Transmission 5-speed manual
6-speed manual
6-speed automatic
Wheelbase 2,670 mm (105.1 in)
Length 4,655 mm (183.3 in)
Width 1,800 mm (70.9 in)
Height 1,680 mm (66.1 in)
Curb weight 1,395–1,820 kg (3,075–4,012 lb) [23]

Mitsubishi unveiled the third-generation Outlander at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show. The production version of the Outlander was debuted in Russia in July 2012, and was introduced in other European markets in September 2012.[24] The vehicle was introduced to North America at the 2012 LA Auto Show, and went on sale in early 2013.[25]

The redesigned model has a new lightweight body that weighs approximately 90 kilograms (200 lb) less than the previous model due to extensive use of high tensile strength steel.[26] With a lower drag coefficient of cd 0.33, fuel economy has been improved over the previous model.[27] Inside, the dashboard and front doors are covered with high quality soft touch material, the seats have been redesigned, and there is abundant use of high grade sound insulation to keep the cabin quiet.

The front suspension consists of MacPherson struts with a stabilizer bar, and the rear suspension is a multi-link design with a stabilizer bar.[28] Electric Power Steering reduces load on the engine compared to a hydraulic system and helps to improve fuel economy. Disc brakes are equipped on all four wheels, with 294 mm (11.6 in) vented rotors in front along with 302 mm (11.9 in) solid rotors in back.

New available safety features include a Forward Collision Mitigation system, a Lane departure warning system, a driver knee airbag to reduce leg injury in a crash, and adaptive cruise control. In addition, the Outlander has standard driver and passenger front airbags, front side torso airbags along with curtain airbags, ABS with EBD, Traction Control Logic, Active Stability Control, Hill Start Assist, and a brake pedal that recedes to prevent leg injury in a crash.[29]

In crash tests conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the Outlander received a top score of "Good" in every category.[30] When equipped with the optional Forward Collision Mitigation system, the car received the Institute's Top Safety Pick+ award. The vehicle also received full five star overall ratings in the United States, Japanese, and European New Car Assessment Programs.[31][32][33]

Plug-in hybrid[edit]

The third generation includes a plug-in hybrid variant, called P-HEV, and its production version was unveiled at the 2012 Paris Motor Show. The plug-in hybrid has a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder MIVEC gasoline engine and the electric powertrain is derived from the electric systems used on the Mitsubishi i MiEV. According to Mitsubishi its 300V 12 kWh lithium-ion battery pack[34] delivers an all-electric range of 60 km (37 mi) with a top speed of 120 km/h (75 mph). Mitsubishi's target was to achieve a combined fuel economy for the Outlander P-HEV in charge-depleting mode of 67 km/liter equivalent, or about 157 miles per gallon gasoline equivalent (MPGe). Fuel economy in hybrid mode is 44 mpg-US (5.3 L/100 km).[24][35]

Sales began in Japan by late January 2013, becoming the first SUV plug-in hybrid in the market. Retail prices vary from ¥3,324,000 (US$36,650) to ¥4,297,000 (US$47,380).[35][36] The European version was unveiled at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show and was slated be released for retail sales in July 2013. The European version is similar to the Japanese model except for minor adjustments to comply with EU requirements, and Mitsubishi expected an emission rating of 44 g/km.[37] Sales in Australia were originally scheduled for June 2013, but began only in 2014.[38] The introduction in the United States was initially scheduled for January 2014.[35] Because of initial production battery problems, European deliveries to retail customers started in October 2013, beginning by the Netherlands and followed by the Nordic countries,[39][40] and the introduction in the United States was initially delayed until 2015.[41] Due to California's regulations that require a battery-monitoring unit, Mitsubishi delayed the market launch in the U.S. for the last quarter of 2015. This unit conducts onboard diagnosis of the Outlander’s lithium ion battery capacity and output and alert the driver to possible degradation. which might affect the vehicle's emissions.[42] In January 2015 it was rescheduled again. Mitsubishi plans to introduced a redesigned versions as a model year 2017. The latest delays are due to production constraints of the lithium-ion battery pack.[43] U.S. deliveries are scheduled to begin in April 2016, and the company expects to sell about 4,000 units in its first year on sale in the country.[44]


As of December 2014, about 49,000 Outlander plug-in hybrids have been sold worldwide,[45][46][47][48][49] with sales led by the European market with 28,177 units.[45][46] Sales of the Outlander plug-in version represented 13.2% of the SUV global sales during the first eleven months of 2013.[50] During 2014, the plug-in version represented 51.7% of Outlander total sales in Europe (38,617 units).[45] The Mitsubishi Outlander P-HEV ranked in 2014 as the top selling plug-in electric vehicle in Europe with 19,980 units sold, ahead of the Nissan Leaf, the previous year top selling PEV, by more than 5,000 units.[5] Mitsubishi expects global sales to more than double to 48,000 units in the Japanese fiscal year that began April 1, 2014, from 19,700 units in the fiscal year that ended March 31, 2014.[42]

The Mitsubishi Outlander P-HEV was released in Japan in January 2013

As of December 2014, the Outlander P-HEV largest country market is Japan with 19,672 units sold.[47] The other leading countries are the Netherlands (15,725),[51] the UK (5,370), Sweden (2,385), Norway (1,485), Germany (1,060), Australia (895) and France (820).[45][48][52][53] The Outlander P-HEV ranked as the world's top selling plug-in hybrid in 2014, and also as the third best selling plug-in electric car after the all-electrics Tesla Model S and Nissan Leaf. Accounting for cumulative global sales since 2009, the Outlander P-HEV ranked as the fifth top selling plug-in electric vehicle in the world ever as of December 2014.[6]

Outlander P-HEV cutaway showing the location of the 12 kWh lithium-ion battery pack under the seats.

The Outlander P-HEV topped the Dutch monthly ranking of new car sales during November 2013, representing a market share of 6.8% of new passenger cars sold that month, and for the first time in the country, a plug-in electric vehicle was listed as the top selling new car.[54][55] In December 2013, the Outlander plug-in hybrid ranked again as the top selling new car that month in the Netherlands, representing a 12.6% market share of new car sales.[56] Dutch sales of the Mitsubishi Outlander P-HEV reached the 10,000 unit milestone in April 2014.[57] As of December 2014, the Outlander P-HEV leads total registrations of the plug-in electric car segment in the Netherlands.[51]

Four months after its market launch, the Outlander P-HEV became the top selling plug-in hybrid in the UK, with about 1,200 units sold through August 2014,[58] and ended 2014 as the top selling plug-in electric car in the UK that year with 5,370 units sold.[45][59] Sales of the Mitsubishi Outlander P-HEV in the British market reached the 10,000 unit milestone in March 2015, passing the Nissan Leaf to become the all-time top selling plug-in electric vehicle in the UK.[60][61] The Mitsubishi Outlander P-HEV also ranked as the top selling plug-in electric car in Sweden in 2014, with 2,289 units registered.[53] It was also the top selling PEV in both Australia and New Zealand in 2014, with combined sales of about 1,100 units.[48][49] In 2014 the Outlander plug-in also ranked as the top selling plug-in hybrid in Norway, Germany, France and Finland.[62][63][64][65]

The following table presents retail sales and registrations for the top selling national markets by year through December 2014.

Mitsubishi Outlander P-HEV
sales/registrations by country
2013 - 2014
Country Cumulative
2014 2013
 Japan[47] 19,672 10,064 9,608
 Netherlands[51][66] 15,725 7,686 8,039
 UK[45] 5,370 5,370  
 Sweden[53] 2,385 2,289 96
 Norway[45] 1,485 1,485  
 Germany[45] 1,060 1,060  
 Australia[48] 895 895  
 France[52] 820 820  
 Spain[67] 209 209  
 New Zealand[49] 197 197  
 Belgium[68][69] 161 160 1
 Finland[65] 146 146  
 Austria[70] 79 79  
 Italy[71] 67 67  
Global sales[45][46][47][48][49] 48,941 31,136 17,805
Plug-in Hybrid EV badge

The Outlander P-HEV was selected as one of the top five finalists for the 2014 World Green Car of the Year. The winner will be announced on April 17, 2014 at the New York International Auto Show.[72]

Battery incident

In March 2013 Mitsubishi Motors reported two separate incidents with lithium-ion batteries used in two of its plug-in electric cars. The lithium-ion battery of a Mitsubishi i-MiEV all-electric car caught fire at the Mizushima battery pack assembly plant on March 18 while connected to a charge-discharge test equipment. In March 21 the battery pack of an Outlander P-HEV at a dealership in Yokohama overheated and melted some of the battery cells, after the vehicle had been fully charged and stood for one day. Nobody was injured in either incident. The battery packs are produced by GS Yuasa, the same company that supplies the batteries for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, whose entire fleet was grounded in January 2013 for battery problems.[73][74] Mitsubishi did not issue a recall but halted production and sales of the two models until it determines the causes of the battery problems. The carmaker advised the 4,000 owners of the Outlander plug-in hybrid to drive only on gasoline mode for the time being.[73][75] On August 19, 2013, after changing a production process to avoid damaging any batteries, Mitsubishi restarted production of the Outlander plug-in hybrid.[76]

Annual production and sales[edit]

Year Production Sales
Airtrek Outlander Airtrek (Japan) Airtrek (export) Outlander (Japan) Outlander (export)
2001 21,245 - 19,160 601 - -
2002 68,431 - 14,132 45,845 - 7,060
2003 77,331 - 7,427 7,917 - 60,512
2004 60,817 - 3,198 320 - 56,997
2005 49,596 21,173 1,030 302 18,919 48,822
2006 31,326 81,883 10 248 16,734 91,693
2007 10,857 170,084 - - 11,194 157,292
2008 5,714 129,383 - - 6,531 115,849
2009 - 98,718 - - 7,638 89,919
2010 - 124,345 - - 6,852 116,672
2011 - 96,261 - - 4,249 93,828
2012 - 105,995 - - 8,439 95,305

(sources: Facts & Figures 2005, Facts & Figures 2009, Facts & Figures 2013, Mitsubishi Motors website)


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