In-depth reviews

Mitsubishi Outlander review

The Mitsubishi Outlander will be great off-road, but it’s dynamically outdated in the class

Overall Auto Express Rating

3.0 out of 5

£28,050 to £44,170
  • Spacious and practical
  • Plenty of kit
  • Five-year warranty
  • Dated interior
  • Mediocre refinement
  • No manual option

While the Mitsubishi Outlander makes headlines thanks to the PHEV plug-in hybrid model, there are also standard petrol versions for sale in dealerships. These don't have the headline-grabbing fuel economy figures of the PHEV to talk about, but they do offer 7-seats, and their conventional powerplant will make greater financial sense for buyers who are unable to take advantage of the PHEV's electric drive.

The Outlander petrol version fits into the family SUV class, and its seven-seat layout means it's a rival for the Skoda Kodiaq, Peugeot 5008, Nissan X-Trail, Hyundai Santa Fe, Kia Sorento and Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace.

The current Outlander is the third generation, but it has a platform that can trace its roots to the Outlander Mk2 and a number of other now-discontinued models from Jeep, Chrysler, Peugeot/Citroen and even the sporty Lancer Evo. Beyond the PHEV, power comes from a 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol unit producing 148bhp. All cars are four-wheel drive, and feature  CVT auto transmission.

Advertisement - Article continues below

There are a variety of trim levels on offer. The petrol version is paired with Design and Exceed trim, while the plug-in hybrid comes with Verve, Design, Dynamic and Exceed equipment levels. Dynamic and Exceed are also available with a ‘Safety’ option pack - including various protection systems. Standard kit is generous, with all cars getting Bluetooth, a DAB radio, 2-zone climate control, rear parking sensors or reversing camera and electric heated folding mirrors.

Advertisement - Article continues below

The Mitsubishi Outlander is an oft-forgotten seven-seat SUV that rivals cars like the Skoda Kodiaq and Nissan X-Trail. Now in its third generation, the Outlander has become more popular in recent years thanks to the tax-friendly PHEV plug-in hybrid version.

The Outlander range was updated in 2015, 2017 and 2018 to keep it competitive, with new styling, extra kit and a revised chassis. Unfortunately the fast-moving SUV sector now means there are a number of rivals that are better to drive and nicer to sit in. There's even a commercial version which blanks out the rear windows and add extra load bay storage. 

Advertisement - Article continues below

While the plug-in hybrid PHEV version remains a pretty unique prospect, it only makes financial sense for buyers in certain situations - business users can reap the rewards of low tax and town commuters benefit from cheap and green electric running. Mitsubishi no longer offers a diesel in the range, replacing the old 2.2-litre oil-burner with a 2.0-litre, four-cylinder petrol unit. However, we’d only recommend either if you insist that you need a Mitsubishi SUV, because there are a lot of far better rivals out there.

Engines, performance and drive

The Outlander is easy to drive, but it lacks the composure of the class best

The Mitsubishi Outlander has decent enough road manners, but it's not as refined as the best SUVs. There’s still a lot of wind noise on the motorway, and although everything is much quieter and smoother with the PHEV hybrid, even that gets noisy when you demand full power.

Advertisement - Article continues below

Best low emission green cars

Handling is predictable (but not remotely engaging) and the Outlander is generally an easy car to drive – the steering is nicely weighted and reasonably accurate and the brakes are strong.

Advertisement - Article continues below

The ride is comfortable enough, but the PHEV's significant extra kerbweight means it feels firm and unsettled over big bumps in town. Most owners are willing to accept that for the trade-off in fuel economy. Off-road, the Outlander is quite capable, with a locking centre diff boosting its ability. If you are planning to go off-road, then the petrol model should be your choice, because it comes with a 4WD lock mode for tougher terrain. In comparison, the PHEV only has 4WD because of the rear-mounted electric motor - there's no propshaft linking the front and rear axles, so you're reliant on the cars' electronics to send power to the wheels with the most grip.


The petrol engine delivers 148bhp at a rev-happy 6,000rpm and 195Nm of torque from 4,200rpm, allowing it to get from 0-62mph in a rather lacklustre 13.3 seconds and top out at 118mph, so outright performance, via the CVT gearbox, is nothing to write home about.

Advertisement - Article continues below
Advertisement - Article continues below

The PHEV is a different kettle of fish. The 2.4-litre petrol engine produces 133bhp and 211Nm of torque and helps to generate charge for the 13.8kWh battery which is located under the boot floor. This battery powers two electric motors - the front delivering 81bhp, with 94bhp at the rear.  You can cruise about silently in electric mode for an estimated 28 miles, demand full power from both, or let the motor decide the optimum use of each power source. It's not fast, but it's smooth and relaxing to drive most of the time.

MPG, CO2 and Running Costs

Outlander PHEV provides low running costs but the petrol version just can’t compete

The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV is one of the cheapest SUVs of any size to run. Its official combined fuel consumption of 139mpg and CO2 emissions of 40g/km are only really beaten by fully electric vehicles and other plug-in hybrids.

Mitsubishi Outlander vs SsangYong Rexton vs Renault Koleos

However, you need to take these figures with a pinch of salt. Run the PHEV on petrol power only and never charge it up and you'll struggle to often beat 30mpg, which puts it at the same level as the Outlander petrol, which has an official economy figure of 32.5mpg. The combined MPG figure is based on someone who has regular access to a charge point and whose commute allows extensive use of pure electric power.


Our experts calculate the Outlander PHEV will hold on to around 29 to 35 percent of its value after 36 months and 36,000 miles.  

Interior, design and technology

Facelift helps the Outlander stand out on the road; overall it's a good looking car, if not a head-turner

The Mitsubishi Outlander has a smoother look than its predecessor, despite both using the same Lancer-based underpinnings. It’s been given a more curvaceous design in tune with the manufacturer’s latest 'Dynamic Shield' design language, with LED headlamps and a large ‘staging’ - as Mitsubishi calls it - of the three-diamond logo.

There’s simple chrome detailing on the grille, window line and across the rear, where there’s a neat light cluster that stretches across the tailgate. It’s not as aggressive-looking as some 4x4s, and all versions, with the exception of the Verve trim, ride on 18-inch alloys. It’s more aerodynamic, too, with underbody panels helping to aid efficiency.

Advertisement - Article continues below
Advertisement - Article continues below

On the inside, it's well screwed together but rather plain. Compared to the modern, minimalist designs of rival's interiors, the square dash and aftermarket-looking touchscreen of the Outlander isn't all that desirable. Still, there's no arguing with the quality and kit on offer.

Sat-nav, stereo and infotainment

Base Outlanders include a DAB six-speaker radio, Bluetooth and dual-zone climate control. Top models feature diamond-quilted leather seats, a heated steering wheel, touchscreen sat-nav, a 360-degree parking camera and additional USB ports in the rear cabin.. Unfortunately, the infotainment system is quite dated, with tacky graphics, fiddly menus and poor resolution. Rivals offer much better systems for similar money.

Practicality, comfort and boot space

Standard Outlander is roomy and a seven-seater, giving it an advantage over the five-seat PHEV

The Mitsubishi Outlander is bigger than the previous model, with 913 litres of storage space available if you fold the third row of seats. There’s a significant 1,608 litres of load room with all five rear seats stowed flat. In petrol guise, it comes with seven seats as standard, a feature that's usually a cost option in rivals, if it's offered at all. 

Advertisement - Article continues below

The rearmost seats are a little tricky to access, but the second and third rows fold easily with a one-touch mechanism. The third row is only really suitable for children, but it’s wider than before and, instead of the old car’s bench, it’s now a 50:50 split fold with individually adjustable backrests.

Advertisement - Article continues below

The boot also has additional stowage beneath the floor, and there’s a powered tailgate on top-spec models. There’s plenty of room up front, too. The plug-in version doesn’t need any additional charging equipment and can be charged through a conventional power socket.

The Outlander PHEV has a big battery pack to store in its boot so practicality suffers a little. Overall luggage space drops to 463 litres and there's no seven-seat option either.


The Mitsubishi Outlander is not class leading when it comes to towing capacity, but that being said, drivers looking to hitch up a trailer should still find the Outlander capable of most moderate tasks. The petrol is able to pull 1,600kg, while the PHEV is slightly lower at 1,500kg.

Reliability and Safety

Mitsubishi is well known for building reliable cars and the Outlander is no exception

The Outlander continues to uphold Mitsubishi’s reputation for reliability. However, the brand finished 21st in our 2019 Driver Power customer satisfaction survey, with strong scores for practicality and running costs, but let down by exterior design, a poor quality feel to interiors and sub-standard infotainment systems. 

The use of high-tensile steel has made the body stiffer and there’s also plenty of standard safety equipment including seven airbags, ABS, traction control as well as the security of four-wheel drive. All this helped the Outlander achieve a full five-stars when it was tested by Euro NCAP in its stringent crash tests in 2012. The heavier PHEV version was also separately tested in 2013 and achieved full marks.

There’s also hi-tech kit available on top-spec cars, such as adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning and a forward collision mitigation system. However, the variety of beeps and bells that sound every time this kit is activated, or when you do anything, can become highly irritating - that's common with many cars of this type.

For an alternative review of the latest Mitsubishi Outlander SUV visit our sister site


Which Is Best


  • Name
    2.0 Design 5dr CVT
  • Gearbox type
  • Price

Most Economical

  • Name
    2.4 PHEV Verve 5dr Auto
  • Gearbox type
  • Price


  • Name
    2.4 PHEV Verve 5dr Auto
  • Gearbox type
  • Price

More on Outlander

Mitsubishi Outlander - spyshot 3
Mitsubishi Outlander
30 Sep 2019

New 2020 Mitsubishi Outlander adopts bold look

The all-new Mitsubishi Outlander seven-seat SUV has been caught on camera, with styling cues borrowed from the Engelberg Tourer concept
Used Mitsubishi Outlander - front
Mitsubishi Outlander SUV
30 Apr 2019

Used Mitsubishi Outlander review

A full used buyer’s guide on the Mitsubishi Outlander covering the Outlander Mk3 (2012-date)
Kia Niro Plug-in Hybrid vs Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV - head-to-head
Kia Niro
26 Jan 2019

Kia Niro Plug-in Hybrid vs Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

We see if the Kia Niro Plug-in Hybrid SUV can topple the latest version of the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV - front static
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
9 Jan 2019

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV review

The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV is a plug-in hybrid pioneer, but it's showing its age, despite a series of updates in 2018
Hyundai Kona Electric vs Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV vs Toyota C-HR - header
Hyundai Kona
28 Nov 2018

Hyundai Kona Electric vs Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV vs Toyota C-HR

Is the all-electric Hyundai Kona a better SUV buy than a Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV or the hybrid Toyota C-HR?
New Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV front
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
1 Oct 2018

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV boosted with flagship 5h and 5hs trims

The 2019 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV plug-in hybrid range has been bolstered with plush new 5h and 5hs trim levels
Lead new 2019 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
6 Sep 2018

New Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV review

Mitsubishi’s Outlander PHEV is the best selling PHEV in the UK. We find out if the new model has the potential to continue this success
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV - front
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
1 Aug 2018

2019 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV prices and specs revealed

Mitsubishi has announced prices for its 2019 model year Outlander PHEV, with figures kicking off from £34,255
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV - front
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
14 Jun 2018

New Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV 2018 facelift review

The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV has been updated, with a new electric motor and a new 2.4-litre engine taking centre stage. We try it out...
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV - front
Mitsubishi Outlander
9 Jan 2018

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV - best hybrid cars

Mitsubishi Outlander is a hi-tech, plug-in hybrid which delivers 148mpg and has all the benefits of a large, tough compact SUV as well.
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
26 Sep 2017

Mitsubishi offers £6,500 off Outlander PHEV in scrappage scheme deal

As part of its new scrappage scheme, existing Mitsubishi customers can acquire the new Outlander PHEV at a reduced cost
MINI Countryman S E vs Volkswagen Golf GTE vs Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV - header
MINI Countryman
29 Jul 2017

MINI Countryman S E vs VW Golf GTE vs Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

The all-new MINI Countryman S E plug-in hybrid squares up to the Volkswagen Golf GTE and Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
Mitsubishi Outlander vs Hyundai Santa Fe vs Kia Sorento - header
Mitsubishi Outlander
11 Apr 2017

Mitsubishi Outlander vs Hyundai Santa Fe vs Kia Sorento

We see if the updated diesel Mitsubishi Outlander is a better all-rounder than the Hyundai Santa Fe and Kia Sorento
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Juro
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
17 Mar 2017

Updated Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Juro gets extra tech

The range-topping Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Juro has been upgraded for 2017, and now gets Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV 2017 - front quarter
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
19 Jan 2017

New Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV 2017 review

The 2017 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV has improved economy and more kit, but is it still worth buying?
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Juro
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
14 Oct 2016

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Juro edition pumps up the value

New Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Juro adds more kit at no extra cost
Mitsubishi Outlander - Paris front three quarter
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
29 Sep 2016

Updated Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV revealed in Paris

Updates for Mitsubishi Outlander range add new in-car tech and safety kit
Mitsubishi Outlander vs Kia Sorento
Mitsubishi Outlander
1 Dec 2015

Mitsubishi Outlander vs Kia Sorento review

Tough new diesel Mitsubishi Outlander aims to build on success of the hybrid model. We head off-road to test it against Kia’s Sorento
Mitsubishi Outlander SUV
30 Oct 2015

New Mitsubishi Outlander 2015 review

The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV hybrid might take all the column inches but how does the standard diesel Outlander shape up?
Mitsubishi Outlander New York
Mitsubishi Outlander
18 Jun 2015

2016 Mitsubishi Outlander: pics, specs and PHEV mpg details

Mitsubishi's facelifted Outlander PHEV SUV set to get 8% efficiency boost when it goes on sale in October 2015
Audi A3 Sportback
18 Feb 2015

Audi A3 e-tron vs BMW i3 & Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

Plug-in cars promise great efficiency, but is Audi’s new A3 e-tron hybrid a better bet than range-extending i3 and Outlander?
Mitsubishi Outlander SUV
18 Feb 2015

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV review

Game-changing Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV plug-in hybrid SUV can deliver 148mpg and CO2 emissions of just 44g/km
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
4 Dec 2014

Long-term test review: Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

Final report: we say goodbye to efficient, but noisy, plug-in hybrid