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Mitsubishi Outlander 2021: all-new seven-seater SUV arriving in Australia this year


The Outlander has been given an update after nine years, with the fourth-generation bringing a fresh new design and high-tech interior to entice growing families.

The all-new 2021 Mitsubishi Outlander has been officially unveiled, with the new midsize SUV expected to arrive in Australia later this year.

Sitting on a newly developed platform shared with the forthcoming Nissan X-Trail, Mitsubishi says the Outlander now packs more all-round capability and extra safety equipment.

Mitsubishi Outlander 2021 driving
Mitsubishi has unveiled its all-new Outlander which packs more capability on and off road

For now, just the seven-seater version of the fourth-generation Outlander has been unveiled with more details on the two-row five-seater set to follow.

What is new about the Outlander’s design?

The new Outlander wears the corporate dynamic shield front end with an abundance of chrome. Like the Eclipse Cross small SUV, the daytime running lights sit above the headlights with a chrome semi-circle strip linking the two.

At the rear, a pair of thin taillights have been placed across the tailgate, which also features a cutout said to imitate the external spare tyre placement of the Pajero 4×4 – but in our eyes the link is hard to see. 

A roof-mounted spoiler along with 20-inch rims have also been fitted to give the Outlander a sportier look, though the wheels will likely be downsized on lower trim levels.

Mitsubishi Outlander 2021 interior
The Outlander 2021 has refreshed the interior with a 9-inch touchscreen and 12.3-inch digital driver’s display

Is the inside of the Outlander any different?

Mitsubishi says the cabin of the Outlander has been designed to be convenient, with soft padding and leather material used around the cabin to create a comfortable environment. 

The base model has been outfitted with fabric seats, the mid-spec cars with suede upholstery and the range-topping grades boast semi-aniline leather. However, Australian specs are yet to be confirmed.

Mitsubishi Outlander 2021 rear
The Outlander features a cutout said to imitate the external spare tyre placement of the Pajero 4×4 but its difficult to see the connection

The seats themselves feature a two-layer urethane structure and have been widened in the first and second row for increased comfort. The new seat design is also said to reduce fatigue and increase comfort. 

Three-zone climate control and heating for the seats will also be offered, depending on the grade.

Sitting in front of the driver is a new 12.3-inch full digital driver display, or a small seven-inch unit and analogue dials in the lower grades.

Mitsubishi Outlander 2021 boot
Mitsubishi will unveil the smaller five-seater Outlander later this year

On higher grades Mitsubishi has fitted a nine-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, while a 10.8-inch heads up display is also offered.

The rest of the cabin has been dotted with a range of USB A and C ports, a wireless charging pad and a ten-speaker BOSE premium sound system.

Attention has been paid to the packaging of the rear seats with the ability to slide the second row fore and aft to create more room in the third row or boot, along with a 40:20:40 split-folding second row – with the centre seat also able to function as an armrest.

Mitsubishi Outlander 2021 front
Mitsubishi has placed the daytime running lights at the top and headlights down lower

What is powering the 2021 Outlander?

Mitsubishi says it has given the fourth-generation Outlander a newly developed 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine which makes 135kW of power and 245Nm of torque slated to be shared with the new Nissan X-Trail.

That sole engine option is mated to a CVT transmission with eight ‘steps’ to imitate the feeling of changing gears. Mitsubishi will offer the Outlander with either front or all-wheel drive.

Mitsubishi Outlander 2021 rear
Mitsubishi has already shown off the Outlander’s off road chops in a pre-release video

Mitsubishi has previously released footage of engineers putting the Outlander through its paces, and has equipped it with a slew of terrain modes to make the best of the AWD system which uses a hydraulic clutch driven by an electric motor to optimise torque distribution to each wheel. 

The new platform is said to be both lighter and stronger than the old Outlander’s, with multi-link suspension and electric power steering said to make the midsize SUV more predictable and enjoyable to drive.

Mitsubishi has previously told Chasing Cars a hybrid variant is on the way to Australia, which will likely arrive in plug-in form and be matched to a 2.4-litre four-cylinder engine.

Mitsubishi Outlander 2021 front 3/4
The Outlander uses a newly developed 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine which makes 135kW of power and 245Nm of torque

Is the 2021 Outlander a safer car?

Along with increased performance, Mitsubishi says the new platform is also designed to perform better in a crash. A total of 11 airbags have been installed, with an all-important centre-airbag critical for Mitsubishi to achieve a five-star ANCAP safety rating. 

In addition, active safety features such as lane keep assist have been fitted along with a smart cruise control function that uses speed sign recognition and the optional navigation system to adjust the speed of the Outlander depending on the conditions. 

The system is even capable of adjusting for the road ahead such as slowing down for a corner and avoiding a fork in the road.

The Outlander will arrive in Australia later this year with pricing and specification to be confirmed closer to launch.