The compact SUV category with a plug-in hybrid powertrain is about to welcome back one of the pioneers of the niche: the 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV. Unlike the outgoing PHEV model, which, remember, was based on the old platform, the new model instead makes use of the architecture shared with the Nissan Rogue.
Last year, Mitsubishi began marketing this new generation of the utility vehicle and the least we can say is that the vehicle’s unusual design caused a lot of talk. On the other hand, this complete redesign has given the vehicle a good dose of class, especially thanks to the more welcoming interior than in the past. Here, we can see the benefits of a shared platform between the two partners Nissan and Mitsubishi.
However, for 2023, Mitsubishi is coming to the forefront with the new version of the model sold with a charging cable. And that entry is coming fast, with the U.S. wing just announcing the model’s presence at this weekend’s Twin Cities Auto Show in Minneapolis and St. Paul, with the 2023 Outlander PHEV making its first appearance.
Virtually unchanged from the gasoline-powered Outlander – except for a few details like an additional cable hatch and exclusive badging – the 2023 Outlander PHEV is expected to retain its powertrain, which consists of a 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine mated to a pair of electric motors and a 20-kWh battery pack (compared to the outgoing model’s 13.8kWh capacity). At the virtual unveiling in the fall of 2021, the automaker claimed a range of 87 km on the WLTC cycle, the European method that is always more generous than the North American method. We can therefore expect a range of around 60 km and more for this new model.
Power figures for the new model are still unknown, but we can expect the 2.4-litre 4-cylinder engine to return with 131 horsepower and 143 lb-ft, while the two electric motors are rated at 113 and 134 horsepower respectively. The automaker also improved battery charging time with a more efficient cooling system, as well as a new battery temperature adjustment system, which should help drivers speed up charging in cold weather.
Also, the fuel tank is larger than in the past, which should mean fewer visits to the gas station. By the way, despite this gain and the new platform, the 2023 Outlander PHEV can also accommodate up to seven passengers, the third row of which can help out on occasion.
There are still a few important details to discover over the next few weeks, including Canadian pricing for this new version of the plug-in hybrid SUV, but you should know that the first examples of the model are expected later this summer.