With sci-fi-like bodywork and a snazzier cabin, the 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander is totally reimagined and now actually competitive in the highly saturated compact-crossover class. Its standard three-row seating is uncharacteristic of the segment, too, but it’s virtually useless. The Outlander shares a platform and mechanical bits with the new Nissan Rogue, including an unremarkable 181-hp four-cylinder powertrain. Mitsubishi also enhances the Outlander’s roster of features and endows it with surprisingly athletic driving manners. Its interior is also much improved, with an elegantly simple design and significantly nicer materials. Plus, there’s an assortment of new connectivity features and driver-assistance technology. A plug-in hybrid (PHEV) model will eventually join the lineup, too.
What’s New for 2022?
The 2022 Outlander is all-new and introduces another generation of Mitsubishi’s compact crossover. Mitsubishi has also announced that the PHEV version will arrive in 2022, possibly as a 2023 model. Along with more battery capacity and a larger electric motor than its predecessor from the previous generation, the Outlander with a plug will now be compatible with a third row, which wasn’t available before.
Pricing and Which One to Buy
With a base price just shy of $27,000, the 2022 Outlander is a little pricier than other compact crossovers, including the Rogue. Despite a variety of desirable features, the top SEL trim has questionable value since it costs about as much as a top-of-the-line Mazda CX-5, which has won our 10Best award multiple times. So, we’d recommend the mid-level SEL model. For just over $30,000 (all-wheel drive adds $1800), it comes with intricate 20-inch wheels, a 9.0-inch touchscreen with Android Auto and wireless Apple CarPlay, a hands-free power liftgate, wireless charging, and driver assists such as adaptive cruise and lane-keeping assist. We’d also select the Tech package that adds a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster, a Bose audio system, and a panoramic sunroof.
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
The Outlander is motivated by a 2.5-liter inline-four-cylinder engine that makes 181 horsepower and 181 pound-feet of torque. It pairs exclusively with a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). Front-wheel drive is the standard configuration, but all-wheel drive is optional. Although the Outlander’s acceleration times are competitive with other compact crossovers (excluding speedsters such as the turbocharged CX-5 and Kia Sportage), it feels less responsive and lazier at highway speeds, which is exacerbated by its gearless transmission. However, the Outlander drives with a newfound agility and composure, especially compared with the outgoing model. Its steering is nicely weighted, its body motions are controlled, and its ride is taut. We did notice a lack of isolation that allowed a lot of road noise to enter the cabin on all but the smoothest roads and our test vehicle’s large 20-inch wheels with limited sidewall cushion didn’t help the situation. The Outlander we drove also had a soft-feeling brake pedal, but the stoppers hauled the SUV down from 70 mph in a class-competitive 172 feet. Mitsubishi says a plug-in-hybrid version will eventually be available, too, but that’s all we know right now.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
Compared with a mechanically identical Nissan Rogue, the 2022 Outlander has lower fuel-economy ratings. An all-wheel-drive Outlander is rated at 24 mpg city and 30 highway, but the Rogue performs slightly better. We’ve tested both on our 75-mph highway fuel-economy route, and the Mitsubishi’s real-world result of 26 mpg was a startling 6 mpg less than the Nissan’s result. For more information about the Outlander’s fuel economy, visit the EPA’s website.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
The new Outlander has significantly nicer cabin materials compared with its predecessor, which was marred by subpar plastics and chintzy trim pieces. Not only are the interior accents and surfaces of higher quality, but the design finally qualifies as modern. Likewise, there’s an assortment of contemporary content that includes an available 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster and a head-up display. While passengers in the first two rows enjoy extra hip room and legroom than in the last-gen Outlander, its third row apparently isn’t made for people with legs. The only other compact crossover with seating for seven is the Volkswagen Tiguan, but, unlike the Outlander, its extra set of seats are limited to front-drive models. Cargo space also increases on the new Outlander, with 1 cubic foot added to the total volume behind the second and third rows.
Infotainment and Connectivity
On the infotainment front, the new Outlander offers either an 8.0- or 9.0-inch touchscreen, depending on the trim. Both units have standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, but only the latter allows users to connect their iPhones wirelessly. Along with charging ports at the bottom of the center stack, the system features hard buttons and physical knobs for volume and tuning. Additional available infotainment features include a 10-speaker Bose audio system, wireless device charging, and access to the subscription-based Mitsubishi Connect app that provides remote services.
Safety and Driver-Assistance Features
Available with driver-assistance technology that includes adaptive cruise control and a semi-autonomous drive mode, the 2022 Outlander boasts a compelling set of tech. For more information about the compact crossover’s crash-test results, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) websites. Key safety features include:
- Available forward-collision warning and automated emergency braking
- Available blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert
- Available lane-departure warning and lane-keeping assist
Warranty and Maintenance Coverage
Mitsubishi provides one of the better limited and powertrain warranties versus other compact crossovers and SUVs. Although the company doesn’t offer complimentary maintenance, its primary protection plans are just as long as those from Kia and Hyundai.
- Limited warranty covers five years or 60,000 miles
- Powertrain warranty covers 10 years or 100,000 miles
- No complimentary scheduled maintenance