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Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Ghs review

Date: 28 July 2017   |   Author: Debbie Wood

Standard equipment: LED daytime running lights, automatic lights and wipers, USB port, dual-zone climate control, cruise control, electric windows.
Ghs: Heated front seats, 18in alloys, sat-nav, blind spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, sunroof, electric tailgate, LED lights, reversing camera

Mitsubishi achieved what many car manufacturers failed to do a couple of years ago -namely, judge the UK's mood and appetite for plug-in hybrids perfectly.

With a little help from some very competitive pricing, sales of the Outlander PHEV boomed, making it the most popular plug-in hybrid of the past few years. In 2015, it even outsold the all-electric Nissan Leaf, the UK's top-selling electric car.

But competition is mounting and Mitsubishi needs to keep its top-seller up-to-date if it wants to stay ahead of its rivals. Although the car was significantly updated at the end of 2015, some mild upgrades were also introduced at the beginning of this year to help the Japanese carmaker continue its winning sales trend.

What's new?

On the outside little has changed for this latest model. However, there are some noticeable enhancements inside the cabin including new trims for the dash and centre console, and some additional kit like ambient lighting and Apple CarPlay.

There's also a whole host of new safety kit including blind spot monitoring, a pedestrian detection system and collision avoidance tech, while an electronic parking brake with auto hold function is also standard for the first time. Small tweaks to the dampers and suspension aim to improve the car's overall ride and comfort. 

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Boot

The most important change for this latest model, though, is the inclusion of a new EV Priority Switch, which allows the driver to save the electric range for when it'll be most useful on a journey (for example, when you enter a city).

Headline figures have also slightly improved to 33 miles of electric range per charge (up from 32 miles), CO2 emissions have dropped by 1g to 41g/km and rapid charging time is now five minutes quicker with 80% achieved in 25 minutes.

Electric power

Low benefit-in-kind (BIK) tax costs aside, for the Outlander PHEV to make any sense as a company car the electric range needs to be properly utilised. It's a heavy car after all and you'll find a pretty thirsty petrol engine under the bonnet if the battery isn't kept topped up regularly.

It's not the most exciting car to drive and at speed a significant amount of wind and road noise intrudes into the cabin, despite enhancements to sound insulation on this latest model.

Mitsubishi Outlanderreat

That said, the changeover from EV to petrol engine is pretty seamless and thanks to the combined 200hp the Outlander PHEV feels powerful, albeit a little noisy, under acceleration, and quicker than the 0-62mph time of 11 seconds would suggest.

The regenerative braking system isn't too intrusive and works well at helping to get the real-world range closer to the 33-mile official figure. Although we didn't take the Outlander off-road on this occasion, the car is impressively capable and offers loads of grip on wet surfaces too.

Behind the wheel

Inside, the Outlander PHEV lacks the polish and finish of most of its rivals and it's here, in terms of interior quality and refinement, where Mitsubishi falls down the most. The infotainment system feels especially clunky and out of date, while harder plastics can be found across the dash and doors.

That's not to say that the Outlander isn't well built, though, and there's plenty of room for five passengers to travel in comfort too. Plus, the cabin comes littered with practical cubbies, cupholders and storage spaces.

At 463 litres, the boot is 128 litres smaller than the diesel thanks to the electric battery, but should prove big enough for most, and in 4hs trim the car comes very well equipped as standard, with luxuries like heated seats, sunroof and reversing camera all included. 

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Boot

There's a lot to like about the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV. It's honest, easy to drive and offers some great running costs ? not to mention it'll cost a 20% tax payer just £62 a month based on current 2016/17 rates.

Sure, it lacks premium appeal and the drive is a little rough around the edges, but overall we think it's still the best plug-in SUV currently on the market in terms of cost effectiveness and overall practicality. With so much competition entering the market place, though, how long the Outlander can fend off its rivals remains to be seen.

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV Ghs

P11D Price: £41,500
On sale: January 2017
Residual value: 30.3%
Depreciation: £28,925
Fuel: £1,883
Service, maintenance & repair: £2,435
Cost per mile: 75.5p
Fuel consumption: 166mpg
CO2 (BIK Band): 41g/km (9%)
BIK 20/40% per month: £62/£125
Boot space: 463 litres
Engine size/power: 1998cc + two 60kW electric motors/200hp combined

Verdict


7/10
  • Good electric range
  • Spacious and practical
  • Low BIK tax costs
  • Dated infotainment system
  • Interior lacks refinement
  • Engine noisy at times

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