2016 Mitsubishi Outlander Teased Ahead of New York Debut
Mitsubishi has just released a teaser photo and an invitation to "come see the new face of Mitsubishi Motors" ahead of the 2015 New York Auto Show, scheduled to begin on April 1st. Although Mitsubishi doesn’t give any details as to what vehicle it will unveil in New York, the teaser suggests it’s a crossover. And since Mitsubishi has been spotted testing a facelifted Outlander recently, it can only be the updated version of the brand’s three-row SUV.
The facelift comes to improve a crossover that has been Mitsubishi’s most successful model in the U.S. since its introduction in 2013. The SUV already received a mild update for the 2015 model year, but the 2016 version will bring many more improvements inside and out, including a front fascia inspired by concept cars such as the GC-PHEV and the Outlander PHEV Concept S. The 2016 facelift could also mark the introduction of the long-awaited plug-in hybrid model in the U.S., which has been previously reported to hit showrooms in the first quarter of 2016.
The teaser also tells us that the Outlander’s styling will trickle onto other Mitsubishi products, but I’m not getting my hopes up seeing it beyond the Outlander and Outlander Sport range. Stay tuned for the full details from New York next month.
Continue reading to learn more about Mitsubishi’s lineup for New York.
Why it matters
The Outlander might not be the most appealing crossover in this tough class, but the model is extremely important to Mitsubishi, which explains why it has been selected to introduce the company’s revised design language. However, the Outlander needs more than just a redesigned exterior to be considered a significant improvement over last year’s model, which was criticized for its underwhelming performance, cramped third-row seat and subpar cargo room. A plug-in hybrid drivetrain would give the Outlander a distinctive selling point among mid-size crossovers, but a more-powerful, more-efficient gasoline engine is essential for its survival.