2022 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

She’s sophisticated, stylish & sassy: meet the 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle

The all-new Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) is due to hit Mitsubishi dealerships in Australia from 15th August 2022, offering a new-generation PHEV system for Aussies with up to 84km of pure electric driving – up from 54km in the previous model. For consumers looking for a sophisticated and fun PHEV without the high-end price tag, your time has come. 

Shaun Westcott, CEO of Mitsubishi Motors Australia says with the release of the new Outlander PHEV, the company is targeting a more premium market than before. “Our core target market is primarily middle-class Australians and we haven’t shifted from that, but what we have picked up from our market research is feedback from customers looking for a more premium offering. So, what we’ve done is move this car up in terms of quality finish, sophistication, and style. Every attribute of the vehicle has improved. And that is to give our customers a better value for money product at the more premium end of the market.” 

MORE: We took one for a spin around all Victoria and here’s how it went

2022 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

The competitors versus the Outlander PHEV

So, what makes the Outlander PHEV stand out from the competitors, such as the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid or the Kia Sorrento PHEV? If environmental considerations are high on your list of priorities, Mr Westcott says driving a PHEV versus a hybrid is the better option. Mitsubishi market research from the previous Outlander PHEV model has revealed drivers tend to use electric mode 84 per cent of the time. With competitor hybrid type vehicles, drivers will use petrol mode most of the time and don’t have the option of driving in electric mode only. 

“With the Outlander PHEV you can do that, so we believe we do more for the environment. And we’ve packaged it in a sophisticated and very stylish vehicle. But our vehicle also has benefits over electric vehicles (EVs) given where we are in Australia now, in terms of the number of charging stations and the availability of infrastructure.” Mr Westcott also makes reference to electricity grid limitations and the inability of the system to cope with an increased load if we all suddenly transitioned to EVs.

From an environmental perspective, Mr Westcott says the Outlander PHEV can immediately contribute positively as the vehicle can be driven in pure electric mode, particularly during the daily commute to and from work. He adds, that long road trips such as Adelaide to Darwin, for example, could be done without any difficulty – and without the hassle of having to stop for 30 minutes to recharge the car. 

“The future is electric. Absolutely, without any doubt. We must reduce emissions and we believe with the product we have right now, we can make a significant impact. It’s a better package – we believe – than a hybrid or some of the other options that are available out there,” he says. 

2022 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

Why PHEV?

While Australians are embracing hybrid vehicles, we are slow with the uptake of PHEV vehicles. In 2020, 0.78 per cent of all vehicles sold in Australia were electric, compared with 10 per cent in the UK and a staggering 74 per cent in Norway. Mr Wescott confirms as a nation, we are a behind the curve, and we need to accelerate this figure. 

“We need to educate and inform Australians, but even if we had a mass adoption of EVs, there are a couple of challenges. First, we’re shifting emissions from the tailpipe to the power station. In Australia, we don’t have 100 per cent renewable energy, so our grid is fueled by 75 per cent of what I call dirty power. So even if we adopted EVs right away, we’d make a difference on the vehicle side, but all we’d be doing is shifting it to Lithgow, or the Hunter Valley or to wherever else the power stations are. So, we’re migrating the problem from the tailpipe to the power station. We need to fix our grid by making it more sustainable and renewable. Then we also need to look at the capacity of the grid, as it’s a constraint in this country.”

Mr Westcott says Mitsubishi modeling has shown if there was a very rapid adoption of EVs right now, the grid would not cope. “We need to solve this issue as a society and we need to look at this as a holistic problem, not just as a singular problem.”

While it’s generally accepted petrol engines are the worst polluters, Mr Westcott says we also need to consider the lifecycle of a vehicle. Take for example a battery EV where the energy intensity and carbon emissions of building those batteries need to be factored in. 

“When you combine that, plus end of life and disposal, overall, the battery EV has more emissions than a plug-in hybrid. PHEVs combine the best of both worlds. They have a much smaller battery, much lower energy intensity and lower carbon emissions when you make the vehicle. When driving the PHEV based on averages – over the lifetime of the vehicle – they have much lower emissions and end of life when you get rid of that vehicle. There are fewer emissions when recycling the batteries and everything else that comes with that. So, if you look at this holistically, the plug-in hybrid has lower emissions than both the EV and petrol engines at the moment. We believe this is a very important space.”

Mr Westcott says as battery technology evolves, the cost of manufacturing batteries will come down and he’s hopeful the way we build and design batteries in the future will result in lower carbon emissions. “At the moment, the smallest environmental footprint is actually a PHEV,” he adds. 

Mitsubishi market surveys reveal more than 80 per cent of their customers say their next vehicle will be an EV, suggesting they’re going down the EV path and not returning to petrol engines. “We do believe our PHEV is a way of bridging or bringing a transitional vehicle into helping people along. It’s about a way of exposing them to driving an electric vehicle – to feel the comfort, the dynamics and the drive – everything that goes with an electric vehicle. We see it as very important bridging technology and as a transition to electric vehicles in the future.”

2022 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

Opera by night, beach on the weekend

Mr Westcott says Mitsubishi has proudly designed a vehicle that is sophisticated enough to go to the opera on Friday night and then head to the beach for a swim or the mountains to go skiing on the weekend. 

“It’s four-wheel drive and has the capability and competence to do both. On the after-sale side, we provide Australia’s first 10-year warranty and 10-year capped price servicing which gives the customer peace of mind for an entire ten years. We do that because we are confident in the capability of our vehicles.”

“It’s a great vehicle. It’s fun to drive, it hugs the road and is a competent off-road vehicle. You can live the life; you can live the Australian dream. You can go anywhere with this car, and you can save the environment. It’s sophisticated and stylish. It’s fantastic,” says Mr Westcott. 

2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-In Hybrid EV RRP pricing

Outlander Plug-In Hybrid EV ES 5 seat$54,490
Outlander Plug-In Hybrid EV Aspire 5 seat$60,990
Outlander Plug-In Hybrid EV Exceed 5+2 seat$65,990
Outlander Plug-In Hybrid EV Exceed Tourer 5+2 seat$68,490

Outlander EV ES highlights: The ES has strong appeal for those seeking the unique benefits Outlander’s PHEV system provides.

  • Fourth-Generation Outlander All new exterior design
  • 18” alloy wheels
  • Plug-in Hybrid EV badging
  • Fourth-generation Outlander All new interior design
  • Cloth seat trim
  • Dual zone air-conditioning with real air outlet
  • Urethane steering wheel with haptic vibration alert
  • 40:20:40 split-fold second-row row seat with recline adjustment
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay
  • Wired Android Auto
  • Hill Start Assist
  • Traction control
  • Terrain control
  • 9-inch audio display with SAT NAV
  • Six speakers including two tweeters

Outlander EV Aspire highlights: For those seeking even sharper visuals, the Aspire grade includes the following highlights above the ES.

  • 20-inch alloy wheels with two-tone finish
  • Front and rear bumper bar silver skid plate garnish
  • Privacy glass
  • LED fog lamps with silver surround bezel
  • Silver roof rails
  • Leather steering wheel
  • Combination seat trim
  • Power driver seat – slide, recline, height and lumbar support
  • Heated driver and front passenger seat
  • 10.8-inch full-colour windscreen projection Head-Up Display.
  • Power tailgate with one touch open
  • 2x USB power socket in rear console
  • Qi wireless smartphone charging

Outlander EV Exceed highlights: Moving to the Exceed adds further sophistication, with the following additions over Aspire:

  • Colour coded lower body accent (front, side and rear)
  • Panoramic sunroof – front tilt/slide with one-touch open and close
  • B- and C-pillars with gloss black paint
  • 5+2 seating configuration
  • Quilted leather-appointed seat trim (in a choice of Black or Light Grey)
  • Power passenger seat – slide, recline, height and lumbar support
  • Two-position seat memory function for driver and front passenger
  • Aluminium gearshift trim panel
  • Pull-up second-row sunshades
  • Tri-zone air-conditioning with rear A/C control panel
  • Illumination in front door trim
  • BOSE® nine-speaker premium sound system
  • Electric outer door mirrors with memory and reverse auto tilt
  • Tailgate with handsfree operation

Outlander EV Exceed Tourer highlights: Befitting its status as Mitsubishi’s brand flagship, the Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Tourer Plug-In Hybrid EV features bespoke interior and exterior finishes for added luxury and road presence. In addition to Exceed, if offers:

  • Two-tone exterior body colour
  • Two-tone high-grade leather interior (black and saddle tan)
  • Driver and passenger seat massage function

New Drive Battery Capacity Care Program for added surety

A new Drive Battery Capacity Care Program provides for protection against degradation, such that it retains at least 66% of its useable energy capacity over this period. The drive battery is covered by an eight-year, 160,000km warranty.

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