Outlander GX5h 2.0 PHEV Auto
no such thing
as a free lunch. Maybe not, but
thanks to Mitsubishi there is
such a thing as a free
For that youll
need one of their
Outlanders, one with a badge ending
in a lowercase h
which identifies it
as a kind-to-the-planet, cutting-edge
Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle...
THAT'S THE NUMBER that's got everybody talking. That and über-green emissions
of just 44g/km. Plus, of course, the fact that you don't need to pay any road
tax and, best of all, if you play your commuting cards right then you'll rarely
need to visit a petrol station.
The million dollar question is: Does the Outlander PHEV really deliver 148mpg?
Yes. And No. Yes because if you stick to its all-electric mode then you'll effectively
use zero fuel which is miles better than 148mpg! Bottom line, it all depends
on how the PHEV is driven.
for journeys shorter than thirty miles (the average UK daily commute is officially
twenty-five) and fully charged prior to setting out so that all your driving
is done purely in the full-electric EV mode you'll effectively get 'free' motoring
because the PHEV will cover 32.5 miles using only the power in its battery pack.
for journeys shorter than thirty miles
(the average UK daily
commute is officially
twenty-five) and fully
charged prior to setting
out so that all your
driving is done purely in
the full-electric EV mode
youll effectively get
Okay, so you'll have to pay for the electricity to charge up the battery pack
from a household 240V/13 Amp socket or a professionally fitted 240V/16 Amp wallbox,
but compared to filling up the tank with unleaded, that's peanuts (the at-home
cost of a full charge is not much over a pound).
For those of you who can't handle the thought of even changing a fuse, plug-in
mains charging is refreshingly simple connect up the appropriate
lead stored in the boot and a full charge using a 13 Amp plug takes five hours;
using a wallbox cuts that to just 3.5 hours. Hook up to a public rapid charge
point and you'll get an 80% charge in just 30 minutes.
Also, should you unavoidably deplete the battery pack during a long trip when
you haven't had the time or the opportunity to recharge externally, you still
have the petrol engine to power your Outlander. Alternatively, leave the PHEV
idling and in 30 minutes it will self-charge to 80% capacity. So even if you
can't find a rapid charge point in a big city or at the motorway services you'll
never be stranded.
Of course, you can charge your battery pack while actually driving
and even when stationary. Battery regeneration is one way, and it's built into
the system so that every time you brake the battery pack receives a boost because
during deceleration the electric motors switch to 'generator' mode and put power
back into the battery.
But it gets even cleverer the intensity of regenerative braking
can be adjusted using either the selector lever or the paddles behind the steering
wheel. Use the maximum setting and lifting off slows the Outlander dramatically
without your foot ever touching the brake pedal.
Not only that but the driver can reset the regeneration level at any time
for instance, when approaching a bend or descending a steep hill
for the most appropriate degree of 'engine braking'. And it's always a win-win
situation: by using the electric motors to slow the vehicle you're also minimising
If all of this sounds complicated, it's not just one drive in
the PHEV and it will all be second nature to you. All you really need to do
is get behind the wheel, press the power switch, check the 'ready' light is
on (confirming you're 'good for launch'), select Drive using the neat 'joystick'-style
selector lever, press the accelerator… and away you seamlessly go
in uncanny silence.
PHEV Outlander's hybrid drivetrain consists of a 2.0-litre petrol engine that
develops 119bhp backstopped by a useful 140lb ft of torque. A pair of electric
motors (one at the front, the other at the rear) each provide 80bhp although
the front one produces 101lb ft of torque while the rear generates 143lb ft.
PHEV system uses
three driving modes
depending on driving
conditions and the
battery charge level.
The seamless manner in
which power is not only
switched between pure
electric and petrol
but also delivered to the
wheels is very
impressive, and adds
the refined cabin
The PHEV system uses three driving modes depending on driving conditions and
the battery charge level: EV, Series Hybrid, Parallel Hybrid. EV is an all-electric
mode in which the front and rear motors drive the vehicle using only electricity
stored in the drive battery. When the drive battery is low or when powerful
thrust is required during rapid acceleration, the battery is supplemented with
electricity generated by the petrol engine.
Finally, during high speed driving the petrol engine operates more efficiently
than pure electric power, so the front wheels are driven directly by the engine
and assisted by the electric motors.
The seamless manner in which the hybrid power is not only switched between pure
electric and petrol but also delivered to the wheels is very impressive, and
adds considerably to the refined cabin ambiance of the PHEV.
Go for the recently added range-topping GX5 model and you get a smart and welcoming
cabin emboldened by modish two-tone soft Nappa leather with cream upholstery
covering the seats. Matching leather is present on the fascia, dash, console
and door panels and the high-grade fit and finish extends through to the luggage
bay where you'll find a full size boot mat trimmed with leather to match the
Getting aboard is easy thanks to wide-opening doors; the seat base is set at
just the right height for the perfect sit-and-swivel entry manoeuvre. A spacious
footwell permits driving in boots often an essential for those
with an active lifestyle, even if it is just walking the hound; knee room is
equally generous and working up your body, there's a full fist of headroom.
The driver gets preferential treatment with powered seat adjustment although
both front seats are equally comfortable and supportive (and have two-stage
heating). The driving position is spot-on with excellent all-round visibility
and a clear view over the bonnet placing the PHEV accurately is
a piece of cake. The smartly finished (in cream and black leather) multifunction
wheel has remote controls for the cruise, phone, voice, audio and media and
is as nice to hold and use as it is to look at.
instrument pack is easy to take in with all the information (covering charge
levels, range, mpg, drive mode, etc) that you need shown on the driver's information
display between the two main dials (power meter and speedometer) as well as,
if you like, on the central seven-inch touchscreen allowing you to decide how
much or how little you want to know about the hybrid's working state. We actually
kept it all down to the essentials: range, road speed and navigation.
touchscreen serves all of your the infotainment requests plus there's a 420W
Alpine sound system that's been acoustically optimised for the PHEV's cabin.
Keeping you cool is an effective dual-zone climate control system
our test car's cabin was one of the coolest places to be in on 1st July (2015)
when the temperature in the UK hit 98 degrees Fahrenheit (the hottest day ever
you cool is an
climate control system
our PHEVs cabin
was one of the coolest
places to be when the
temperature in the UK
hit 98 degrees...
SG5h drivers get plenty of 'goodies' including heated seats in the back as well
as up front, keyless entry and start, touchscreen, Bluetooth hands-free, electric
windows, on-demand powerfold and heated door mirrors, mood lighting, cruise
control and speed limiter, automatic drive-away door locking, powered tailgate
(opening and closing activated via the dash, the tailgate or the keyfob), powered
tilt 'n' slide sunroof with 'blackout' blind, foolproof SatNav that voices directions
in good time backed up by clear mapping, reversing camera, rear parking sensors,
privacy glass, auto lights and wipers, DAB radio and, exclusive to the PHEV,
machine-polished 18-inch aluminium wheels.
Safety kit includes seven SRS airbags (driver and passenger seat airbags, side
and curtain airbags, and a knee airbag for the driver), height-adjustable front
seatbelts, all-wheel drive, Active Stability & Traction Control, Hill-start
Assist and LED daytime running lights.
There's ample room for three adults in the rear cabin (and that includes space
for three sets of feet, too); easy lounging is the order of the day, more so
for two who can prop themselves comfortably against the big padded centre armrest
and snuggle into the heated outer seats. If you're an upright sitter you'll
be please to know that headroom is also very good in the back, with a full fist
of air between the top of your head and the roof.
The Outlander can also pack in the luggage thanks to its 463-litre boot; and
that's with all the seats taken. Fold the back row and the loadbay expands to
a versatile 1,022 litres with a totally flat cargo floor. Useful deep side bins
and large storage trays under the boot floor also come in handy. Need to tow
something? The PHEV will happily haul a braked 1,500kg.
the 80-cell battery pack mounted under the floor between its axles, the Outlander
feels palpably 'planted' and it shows in the settled and reassuring
cornering. The brakes, too, are up to scratch, and if you make full use of the
'regenerative' braking it's even better. Overall it feels focused, is responsive,
and very driveable.
the move the Outlander feels agreeably quicker than its paper figures
especially in full EV mode where maximum torque is delivered instantly, providing
truly eager acceleration. A very big 'plus' is that the PHEV can keep comfortably
to the legal limit on motorways using battery power alone.
restricted to blacktop
the PHEVs 4WD is not
only useful on slippery
roads but also gives you
the freedom to explore
the wild side.
With its 190mm ground
clearance we felt justified
in taking it well off the
beaten track and it never
once felt out of its
Officially, using both battery and petrol modes, the PHEV has a cruising range
of approximately 500 miles so goodbye 'range anxiety'.
The best hybrid mode figure we recorded was 89.7mpg and that was after starting
out with a full battery pack but leaving the system to automatically juggle
electricity with petrol (the petrol engine only cuts in at high speed or under
heavy acceleration, powering the wheels directly).
Even when our PHEV's battery was out of 'juice' we still recorded 50.1mpg
amazingly good, especially so for an autobox crossover.
Most reassuring is the 4WD function: pressing the 4WD Lock button (while driving
or stationary) enables the highest traction and stability at low to high speeds
and is ideal for driving on low-friction dirt tracks as well as on tarmac in
rain or snow.
And you're not restricted to blacktop the PHEV's 4WD is not only
useful on slippery roads but also gives you the freedom to explore the wild
side. With its 190mm ground clearance we felt justified in taking it well off
the beaten track and it never once felt out of its comfort zone.
A cinch to drive, the five-seater, full-size SUV PHEV comes with something few
other cars have the 'sound of silence'. And on top of the many
benefits of a 4WD SUV, if your daily commute is less than a 60-mile round trip
you can have environmentally-friendly, all-electric operation for everyday use
and effectively drive for free!
Mitsubishi Outlander GX5h 2.0 PHEV Auto
Maximum speed: 106mph | 0-62mph: 11 seconds | Test Average: 89.7mpg
Power: See text | Torque: See text | CO2: 44g/km