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2014 Mitsubishi Outlander: Back On Track

In today’s automotive industry, change is critical. Automakers must keep their product lineup as fresh as meat in a butcher shop, and failing to do so will lead consumers to think that they’re stagnating.
Michel Deslauriers
Published on 2013/06/18
SQUAMISH, British-Columbia – What happens when Mitsubishi lengthens their product life cycles? People start imagining that the company is headed for disaster and will pull out of the market. The Lancer has been around since 2007, while the Outlander was unchanged since 2010 and a few models were discontinued due to age and lack of popularity, such as the Galant, the Eclipse and the Endeavor.

But Mitsubishi has no reason isn’t about to pack it in, despite rumours and the recent decision by fellow Japanese automaker Suzuki to stop selling cars in Canada. If the 2014 Mitsubishi Outlander is any indication, these guys are serious about rivalling the best in a crowded compact utility market that includes the Toyota RAV4, the Dodge Journey, the Ford Escape and the Honda CR-V.

During the Canadian press launch, we drove from downtown Vancouver to Squamish, and also hit the trails in order to test the Outlander’s refinement and poise on terrain rougher than neatly pressed asphalt. ES, SE and GT trim levels are offered, and only the base trim is available with a two-wheel drivetrain; we drove the cheapest and most expensive versions.

New style
Although the Outlander rides on the same wheelbase and its dimensions are virtually unchanged, it has been almost totally redesigned. Mitsubishi is phasing out their corporate face inspired by the Lancer Evolution’s snout and are heading into a new styling direction. While the look of the 2014 model doesn’t really stand out from the competition, the Outlander’s sheetmetal is sleek and modern.

The 2014 Mitsubishi Outlander has improved in many aspects and the most significant one may be its redesigned cockpit, since that’s where most shoppers draw first impressions of a vehicle. The new model’s interior uses richer materials and is much more attractive. New sound systems with a USB port are fitted as well, and every trim is equipped with automatic climate control, heated front seats and Bluetooth connectivity.



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