New models - Mitsubishi - Outlander
Mitsubishi opens fire with early Outlander launch
All-new Outlander hits Mitsubishi showrooms three weeks ahead of media launch
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20 Nov 2012
MITSUBISHI has put its all-new Outlander on sale in Australia three weeks ahead of the official media launch, and in doing so fired a shot across the bow of key new rivals in the busy compact SUV market.
The Japanese company announced this week it had already sent truckloads of the new model – which was revealed in full at last month’s Australian International Motor Show in Sydney – to its dealer network, one day before the launch of key rival Honda’s new CR-V.
While the official on-sale date of November 18 was publicised at the show, the Outlander’s national media launch will not be staged until early next month.
Mitsubishi’s move also comes amid a flurry of activity from other contenders in the hotly contested compact SUV market, with the imminent local release of all-new contenders, including the fourth-generation Subaru Forester and latest Toyota RAV4 in February.
And last week Mazda Australia announced that from early next year it will offer a more powerful 2.5-litre SkyActiv petrol engine in all-wheel-drive versions of its hot-selling CX-5, which was released here in March.
The 138kW/250Nm engine closely matches the outputs of its main AWD rivals, addressing concerns that the existing 2.0-litre SkyActiv unit was underpowered.
As we reported last month, the new Outlander will be priced from $28,990 plus on-road costs for the entry-level front-drive ES petrol – $1400 more than the equivalent new CR-V – climbing to $45,490 for the flagship Aspire all-wheel-drive diesel.
As with the CR-V, CX-5, RAV4 and a host of other key rivals, Mitsubishi offers the Outlander in price-leading front-drive configuration as well as premium AWD guise.
The front-drive models are powered by a 110kW/195Nm 2.0-litre petrol engine, while AWD models are available with either 124kW/220Nm 2.4-litre petrol or 110kW/360Nm turbo-diesel engines.
In addition, Mitsubishi will add a segment-first plug-in petrol-electric hybrid option to the local range around mid-2013. This powertrain is capable of a range in excess of 880km and is said to consume as little as 1.6 litres of fuel per 100km.
Mitsubishi has already sold more than 10,000 Outlanders in Japan, Europe and Russia since launch, and local CEO Mutsuhiro Oshikiri said the company had high hopes for a strong start in Australia after “strong interest” from the public at AIMS.
Despite dating back to 2006, the previous Outlander remained relatively strong until the end and even topped the medium SUV sales charts last month – its final full month on sale – with 1524 units, on the back of run-out deals.
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