Mitsubishi Outlander 2.4 CVT G-Line: Japanese Road Runner

Recent trends have seen buyers opening up to different categories of cars, moving away from the traditional sedans to crossovers and sports utility vehicles (SUVs) currently.

Yes, you might see mixed numbers of Honda Vezels and Nissan Qashqais on the roads, but one more that’s gaining popularity would be the facelifted Mitsubishi Outlander 2.4 CVT G-Line.

Minimal changes to its facade

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As per all facelifts, one wouldn’t expect much aesthetic changes when it comes to introducing a facelift to any model. The Outlander is no different.

Up front, subtle changes include new headlamp assemblies, which now incorporates LED daytime running lights and bi-xenon headlamps, as well as a revised tail light cluster.

You get significantly more chrome on the front facade of this 7-seater, thanks to Mitsubishi’s new “Dynamic Shield” package, boosting its visual appeal and reducing its perceived size on the roads.

The new Outlander also gets a new look for its 18″ rims, still a tad messy in our opinion, but definitely much better than the cobweb design of its predecessor’s.

Cabin of comfort and peace

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Mitsubishi attributed much of the peace and comfort you can experience in the Outlander to the improved NVH (noise, vibration, and harshness) factor. The cabin feels solidly insulated, and you can barely hear the engine’s hum when you fire up the car.

The center console housing the Outlander’s infotainment system doesn’t see any change, though the steering wheel has been updated to reflect a new design, though its multi-function features still remain the same.

In the heart of the car’s infotainment system, Mitsubishi’s attempt to reduce the touchscreen size resulted in much difficulty in reading the small text and selecting menu options, especially on the go. On the plus side, the system does provide basic necessities such as satellite navigation and a locally-fitted reverse camera. However, we understand from the folks at Mitsubishi that newer batches have a bigger screen installed – fortunately.

Though looking a tad plain, the Outlander’s cabin offers you almost as many features as you can ask for in any Japanese make, from push-start button to an electronic handbrake and even paddle shifters.

Over at the middle row, the Outlander sits three adults comfortably, though four’s a squeeze. The third row, unfortunately, doesn’t feel as spacious as promised, although we garner that most drivers would flatten the seats to increase their boot space.

CVTs are known not to be as exhilarating. How does this fare?

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The Outlander houses a 2,360 cc continuously variable transmission (CVT) plant under its hood, putting out 167 horses and 222 Nm of torque. These figures should presumably bring you to the century mark in just above 10 seconds.

However, if you’re not into speed (as we presume most Outlanders would not too), the INVECS III transmission system offers an impressively comfortable ride. On the down side, acceleration even to overtake on the expressway felt like a chore to the otherwise peaceful and calm drive, as the engine struggled to keep up with the amount of force we used on the pedal.

Mitsubishi also recognises the fact that most 4WDs are not fully utilised on the roads – hence the inclusion of a 4WD button that allows you to run on 2WD or to change to a permanent 4WD system if you decide to bring the car out of its comfort zone.

On paper, you’d be expected to achieve a 7.7 litre per 100 km fuel consumption reading, working out to be around 12 km per litre, but you should really be expecting a figure closer to 10 km/l based on our local traffic conditions.

So would this make a good buy?

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The facelifted Mitsubishi Outlander presents more than what any bread and butter car could offer, with a variety of gadgets and features heaped into the car to boost its appeal. Yes, its engine and drive may not be able to match up on par with some of its competitors, and you might just be better off with a full-fledged MPV such as the Odyssey or the Wish if you’re seriously looking at a 7-seater.

But for S$129,000 (as of press time), the features and ride comfort you get from this facelifted Outlander could just be more appealing than any of the MPVs out there.

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