Reviews: 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander

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Pros

  • Way more tech than before
  • Mitsubishi's generous standard warranty
  • Confident handling

Cons

  • Bold styling not for everyone
  • Only 181 hp
  • Puny third row

With more advanced tech and an upgraded interior, the 2022 Outlander three-row SUV might just make it onto more car-shopping lists. New this year, the 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander represents a fresh take on the midsize SUV segment from the brand after years of falling behind. Like the Kia Sorento, the seven-passenger Mitsubishi Outlander competes with other midsize SUVs that may not have third rows.

What We Think

The new Nissan Rogue-based Outlander is the most modern, competitive Mitsubishi we've driven in years. Handling and body control are above average; we were pleasantly surprised at the Outlander's performance on a twisty bit of road during our First Drive. That said, the sole powertrain option of a naturally aspirated four-cylinder and a CVT automatic leaves this three-row Mitsubishi feeling underpowered, plus the CVT often holds the engine at noisy high rpms.

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Inside, the 2022 Outlander is leaps and bounds better than its predecessor. Material quality feels on par for the segment and interior design is clean and sharp. Top-spec models even include sumptuous quilted leather, real aluminum, and a panoramic sunroof.

Tech is improved, too, with a larger touchscreen infotainment setup, sizeable instrument cluster display, and Nissan's clever driver-assist features. Just don't plan on using the third-row seats—they're pitifully cramped and seem too small for anyone that has outgrown a child's seat.

So How Big Is the 2022 Outlander?

Reaching dealerships in the second quarter of 2021, the 2022 Outlander is a full two inches wider than the last-generation model, 1.5 inches taller, and 0.6 inch longer. The wheelbase is 1.4 inches longer than before, a move Mitsubishi says helps provide an extra inch of legroom for front and second-row passengers.

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To put the 2022 Outlander's compact 185.4-inch length into perspective, the three-row 2021 Kia Sorento is 189 inches, the two-row 2021 Honda CR-V is 182.1 inches, and the two-row 2021 Nissan Rogue is 183.0 inches.

Wait, Was There a 2021 Model?

Actually, the only 2021 Mitsubishi Outlander was the plug-in hybrid; the non-hybrid trims skipped the 2021 model year. We expect a new plug-in hybrid model for the 2022 or 2023 Outlander.

3 Cool Tech Updates to the 2022 Outlander

Thanks to a little help from Nissan, the 2022 Outlander offers some serious tech upgrades compared to the last-gen model. Although the tech isn't exactly unique to the segment, the features give buyers another reason to look at the Outlander beyond its stellar 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty. A fully digital 12.3-inch instrument cluster is available; a 7.0-inch display between two analog gauges is standard.

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Also on the options list is a 9.0-inch touchscreen (an 8.0-inch unit is standard). A head-up display is also available.

The third major update is to the Outlander's safety equipment. The Mitsubishi now offers front and rear automatic emergency braking, lane keeping assist, automatic high beams, and blind-spot monitoring. Trailer Stability Assist will also be available.

Luxury-Like Features

There's just no good substitute for experiencing a vehicle in person. Sometimes, it's only when you're with a car that you'll see a feature available on two different cars is executed better on one than the other. Having said that, we're impressed by a few upgrades that will be available on the 2022 Outlander. Aside from the available head-up display, the 2022 Outlander will also offer a 360-degree camera parking system, semi-aniline leather, real aluminum trim, and 20-inch wheels.

How Much Power Does It Have?

The 2022 Outlander is optimized more toward the value side of the midsize SUV segment. The standard engine is a 2.5-liter naturally aspirated I-4 with 181 hp and 181 lb-ft of torque. FWD will be standard and a multi-mode AWD system will be available. In our First Test of an AWD model, the Outlander reached 60 mph in 8.6 seconds.

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Fuel economy numbers read 24/30-31 mpg city/highway. The last-gen Outlander's available V-6 isn't offered anymore, but Mitsubishi is bringing back the plug-in for 2023. The automaker is promising 40 percent more power front the front and rear electric motors, and we're estimating EPA electric range will rise to 46 miles, up from its predecessors 24 miles.

As before, a CVT automatic transmission is standard.

Key Competitors:

  • Kia Sorento
  • Hyundai Santa Fe
  • Nissan Rogue
  • Ford Edge
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