The Mitsubishi Outlander range in Malaysia today gained an additional variant with the roll-out of a locally-assembled variant with a 2-litre engine. The new Outlander 2.0 shares many features with its bigger brother which was introduced in Malaysia last year. The Outlander 2.4, priced at RM171,000 (excluding insurance) will continue to be imported in Completely Built-Up (CBU) form from Japan, so it is likely that the most of the model’s sales will shift to the 2-litre variant which is price at RM139,988 (introductory price, excluding insurance).
The 2-litre engine is a familiar one, being a MIVEC DOHC unit with a CVT. It produces 145 ps/196 Nm and depending on how you drive the vehicle, tests by Mitsubishi Motors Malaysia have shown that there can be fuel-savings compared to the 2.4-litre engine.
Unlike the locally-assembled ASX, which is available with 2WD and 4WD, the Outlander 2.0 has only 4WD. While many people may feel that 4WD is only useful if you go off-road and conditions are muddy or rough, having power for all four wheels can also benefit daily driving Of course, it’s not like a Lancer Evo 4WD drivetrain which is performance-oriented but grip and stability can still be enhanced on slippery roads.
The multi-select 4WD system with three modes is an electronically-controlled system which allows the driver to select a suitable mode according to the driving conditions. All that is required is a single touch of the drive mode selector on the console between the front seats. The front and rear torque distribution mechanism uses an electronically-controlled coupling to distribute the torque between the front and rear wheels appropriately at all times, based on grip conditions.
Generally, the system can be left in AUTO mode which provides a balance of 4WD performance appropriate to the road and driving conditions encountered. The ECO mode diverts torque to the front wheels most of the time so it is more like a front-wheel drive car and fuel-savings can be enjoyed. However, if there is a lot of slippage of the tyres, then the system will automatically start to direct some torque to the rear wheels as well. In extreme conditions, the centre differential can be locked and this means that torque distribution is forced to be 50:50 between the front and rear axles.
The styling of the Outlander 2.0 is identical to that of the 2.4 variant and incorporates the company’s ‘Dynamic Shield’ design concept. The Outlander was the first Mitsubishi model to adopt this concept which is said to ‘dynamically and powerfully express functionality to protect the passengers and the vehicle’.
Features-wise, there’s a lot that comes with the Outlander 2.0 although, understandably, its equipment level is not exactly the same as that of the Outlander 2.4. Standard equipment includes automatic headlamps and wipers, keyless entry with a button for starting/stopping the engine, 7-inch HD infotainment system with Apple CarPlay connectivity and a reverse camera.
The Outlander will be especially appreciated by those with big families or businessmen who frequently have to carry many associates as it has three rows of seats to accommodate up to seven persons. For maximum carrying capacity, both the second and third rows can be folded, expanding the cargo volume to 1,608 litres.
High standards of safety are evident with 7 airbags to provide protection at the front and sides during a severe collision. The Reinforced Impact Safety Evolution (RISE) body construction also helps to reduce the injurious effects of an accident by dissipating impact forces before they can reach the occupants. For those with kids, there are ISOFIX points so that compatible childseats can be installed easily.
Besides ABS +EBD and Brake Assist, the Outlander 2.0 also has an Active Stability & Traction Control system. Active stability control takes overall control of the ABS, traction control function and stability control function to help maintain the vehicle’s control and traction. Additionally, Hillstart Assist makes moving off on steep slopes easier for those who are not experienced. It keeps the braking force applied for about 2 seconds when you move your foot from the brake pedal to the accelerator pedal.
The Outlander 2.0 is available in three colours – Ruby Red, Solar White and a new colour exclusively for the Malaysian market, Ruby Black. The warranty period is for 5 years with no limit on mileage. Owners also get complimentary 24hrs Mitsubishi Assist for the first year after registration. This provides a comprehensive range of services including a 24-hour breakdown assistance throughout Malaysia, referral services, as well as emergency assistance.