Last week, Mitsubishi introduced the next generation of its Outlander SUV, which should launch commercially later this year as a 2022 model. We were told, at that time, that the renewed PHEV (plug-in hybrid) version will be introduced at a later date.
In the meantime, the company is proposing a mildly improved version for 2021, set to arrive at dealerships at the end of March. Its price jumps by $200 over 2020, but at $44,198, it will still be eligible for government rebates.
So what's changing? Mitsubishi says it has upgraded the 2.4L 4-cylinder engine that powers the model. Power is the same at 126 hp while torque is rated at 149 lb-ft. The change comes with the switch from the old 60-kW electric motor on the rear axle to a more powerful 70-kW unit. According to the automaker, total power output of the system has increased by 31 hp to 221.
Battery capacity has increased from 12 kWh to 13.8 kWh, which should increase the range from 35 to 39 km. Good luck seeing the difference there, quite frankly. What's certain is that if Mitsubishi wants the next generation of the model to be relevant, this range will have to double.
The manufacturer also mentions that the powertrain has received a software update that ensures better synchronization between the battery and the engine. Other improvements to reduce noise, vibration and soften the experience behind the wheel have also been made.
While behind the wheel, drivers will be able to enjoy two new driving modes: Sport and Snow.
As for the rebates offered, the 2021 Outlander PHEV is still eligible for a federal rebate of $1,500, while in Quebec and British Columbia, $4,000 and $2,500 rebates are available, respectively.
Finally, the model is available in four versions: SE, LE, SEL and GT. Each model is equipped with the company's S-AWC (Super All Wheel Control) all-wheel drive system.
Pricing breaks down as follows:
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