Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (2013-2021) engines, drive & performance

The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV isn't fast or entertaining, but it’s smooth and relaxing

Overall rating

3.5 out of 5

Engines, drive & performance rating

3.5 out of 5

0-62mphTop speedDriven wheelsPower
10.5s106mphFour177bhp

The plug-in hybrid Outlander is quiet and effortless in pure-electric mode, making for a great short-distance commuter. On faster roads or when the petrol engine is at work, the fairly underwhelming performance and light steering make for an inoffensive but forgettable experience.

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV electric motor, 0-62mph and acceleration

The 2.4-litre petrol engine in the Outlander PHEV produces 133bhp, while the electric motors make 81bhp at the front and 94bhp at the rear. This means acceleration is smooth and fast enough, with 0-62mph taking 10.5 seconds. There’s even a Sport driving mode, although the Outlander never feels like a car that warrants it. In electric mode around town, the lack of engine noise will be a novelty to anyone new to electric cars, and it’s one of the reasons why they’re so great for urban commuting.

Good visibility, a raised seating position, boxy proportions and light but precise steering make the PHEV well suited to pottering around town despite its chunky size, but on faster roads the powertrain feels a bit strained if you ask for an overtake.

Still, while it’s not fast, it is clever. There's a 'save' function that allows you to hold the battery charge for use when it's going to be most efficient, so you can rely on the petrol engine for the motorway part of your commute when it’ll will be at its most efficient, and then use electric power for the stop-start traffic in town. Mind you, if it’s only a short stint on the motorway, the Outlander will do fast cruising speeds in electric mode without a problem.

Handling

You’re unlikely to want to hustle the Outlander PHEV – with light steering and ponderous body control, it certainly feels best making relaxed progress, when you can enjoy the smooth refinement. The Outlander has permanent four-wheel-drive that’s active even when running on electricity alone, which helps it to feel stoic and secure however you’re driving it, even in wintry conditions. A MINI Countryman Cooper S E All4 is much more fun if that’s important to you.

Most Popular

Fisker PEAR: first look at £25,000 electric city car
Fisker PEAR spy shot
News

Fisker PEAR: first look at £25,000 electric city car

The cut-price EV is due to be unveiled in the second half of 2023 and offer up to 310 miles of range
2 Feb 2023
New electric cars coming in 2023 and beyond
Polestars under cover
Coming soon

New electric cars coming in 2023 and beyond

With electric cars making up an ever-increasing proportion of sales, the industry is working flat out to launch new models – here's what's on the way …
3 Feb 2023
New XPeng G9 electric SUV: prices, specs and range
XPeng G9 flagship electric SUV
News

New XPeng G9 electric SUV: prices, specs and range

Chinese flagship electric SUV offers over 350 miles of range and is due to land in the UK by 2025
3 Feb 2023