Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (2014) Review

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Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (2014) At A Glance

4/5

+Cheap to run if you can charge at home and don't do many miles. Masses of space. Significantly improved for 2019.

-Very heavy. Real mpg user average 62.6 mpg. Uncultured cabin and driving experience. Loses sixth and seventh seats of diesel Outlander.

New prices start from £34,305
Insurance Groups are between 22–27
On average it achieves 42% of the official MPG figure

When it launched in 2013, the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV held the honour of being the world’s only plug-in hybrid SUV. It was also the first plug-in vehicle that could genuinely fit in with day-to-day life... the boot was big enough for families to go on holiday and, being a plug-in hybrid, you could just fill it up with petrol rather than stopping to charge it up with electricity all of the time.

There was a long list of perks, too: free VED tax, a £5,000 Government electric car grant, London congestion charge exemption and very low company car tax. Combine that with incredible economy figures (166mpg and 41g/km CO2) and no wonder electric car charging companies struggled to keep up with the sudden demand from Outlander PHEV drivers.

Those advantages have diminished over time. While first year VED remains free, you'll pay £130 in subsequent years. The plug-in car grant has been reduced to £2,500 and company car drivers will now pay more in tax.

Mitsubishi's made various upgrades over the years in an attempt to keep the Outlander PHEV looking fresh, with the current model boasting a higher quality cabin than the original, improved performance and better ride quality.

Journey carefully for fewer than 20-25 miles per day, and always keep your PHEV plugged in at home, and in theory you’ll never delve into your fuel tank. But once you begin to task the four-cylinder petrol engine with work things go downhill rapidly – unless you’re literally going down a hill. You can expect 30-40mpg from the PHEV if the battery is flat, because the engine is not only moving this two-tonne car about, but charging the massive battery too.

And it does so in noisy fashion generally, although conversely when running on electric power alone the PHEV is a model of quiet comfort and refinement – and surprisingly good at going around corners, too.

Despite the cabin improvements brought about with the facelift, the interior of the Outlander is hardly inspiring. It’s well put together and feels durable, but the design is bland, the switchgear incoherent, and the infotainment system old-school. The driving position conspires to perch you too high in the car, while some practicality is lost compared to the diesel Outlander because the rearmost seats (six and seven) make way for an electric motor and the boot is smaller.

Ultimately, Mitsubishi has found a very useful niche with the Outlander PHEV by offering this much space in such tax-friendly fashion, which could well be enough for plenty of company car buyers – those with company fuel cards, especially. However, those advantages are declining and the Outlander lacks charm and flair, and remains very much a purchase for the head rather than the heart.

Looking for a Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (2014 on)?
Register your interest for later or request to be contacted by a dealer to talk through your options now.

Real MPG average for a Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (2014)

RealMPG

Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance

42%

Real MPG

48–79 mpg

MPGs submitted

191

Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

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Ask Honest John

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, Honda CR-V or Lexus RX - which would you choose?
"I have a 5-year-old Audi Q5 and the fuel costs and servicing are ridiculous. It was £2300 for a recent service and two days later the turbo unit packed in and had to be replaced at a further £2100. I’ve had enough and also find Audi garages extremely unhelpful. I'm considering a Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV but have also been recommended Honda CR-V and a Lexus RX. What are your thoughts?"
If you value customer service, I would go with the Lexus. Lexus dealers have an excellent reputation for customer care and Lexus cars consistently top reliability surveys. You'll find the Lexus RX gets closer to the posh cabin feel of your Audi than either the Honda or Mitsubishi and Lexus cars come with lots of kit as standard, they have very comfortable seats and great stereos. Parts are not the cheapest, but that's true of any Japanese model. If you value cheap running costs, have somewhere to charge the car and do lots of short commutes, the Mitsubishi could save you a lot of money on petrol, although that's the only reason I would choose it. The Honda, meanwhile, is the most practical of the lot and should also be very reliable, but it's a bit stodgy to drive and you need a degree in computer science to operate the infotainment. As always with these things, it is best to try the cars for yourself before you make a decision.
Answered by Russell Campbell
I need a large family car for low mileage use. Would a plug-in hybrid suit?
"I'm looking to buy a secondhand family car. I will do short commutes to work (7miles), schools trips and occasional long journeys. It will need to be a load-lugger as we have a large dog, two kids and camping gear. The other car is a new Nissan Leaf, which does all the weekend running around. This car, while being the family car, will only do 5-7k mileage a year. It feels like a diesel is out, narrowing down the larger car range for me. I don't want new and can live with high mileage (ish) as I won't put many miles on it. I have been looking at Estates - Passat GTE and Skoda Superb (petrol). I don't want to spend more than £16-18k really. Recommendations welcome!"
It sounds like you're thinking along the right lines. A plug-in hybrid could be perfect – capable of covering the commute under electric power with the petrol engine on hand for those longer journeys. A Volkswagen Passat GTE is a very practical option that makes an excellent used purchase. There aren't that many about but, if you can find one, it could be the ideal choice. If you fancy something a bit more premium, take a look at the Mercedes C350e Estate, while a Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV could be a good alternative (and easier to find) if an SUV appeals.
Answered by Andrew Brady
My plug-in hybrid has only done 2500 miles in the last year. Does is really need a major service?
"I have a 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, owned since almost new and has done 38,000 miles. Each year I have had it serviced at a local dealer. This year, I've only done 2500 miles since the last service - only approx. 600 miles of which has been using petrol power. It's now due for an annual service and all tasks due appear to be age-related. While I appreciate brake fluid must be changed, do I really need to change engine oil and filter? Historically much work I believe was mileage related. Any advice on essential maintenance for such low usage would be appreciated. The £450 I have been quoted for the service seems high in the circumstances. Best regards."
I would always recommend a full oil and filter change every 12,000 miles or 12 months (whichever comes first). Clean oil plays a crucial role in keeping the engine and its components running smoothly. If the car has been left standing for long periods then the oil may have become dirty and oily sludge/dirt may accumulate in the filter. Skipping the oil change on a five-year-old car is unwise, in my opinion.
Answered by Dan Powell
What hybrid crossover should we replace a Nissan Qashqai with?
"My nephew, his wife and two children (aged 8 and 6) are moving from London to a leafy village in Sussex. They have £16000 to spend on a hybrid, plus a 2009 Qashqai. They want something no smaller than the Qashqai and 90% of their new journeys will be less than 2 miles. They will have an EV charging point in their new house. What should they go for, please?"
We'd recommend a MINI Countryman PHEV. It's a desirable choice that'll be capable of covering most of their journeys under electric power alone. It'll have a similar boot capacity to the Qashqai but, if they'd prefer something a little bigger, look at the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV.
Answered by Andrew Brady

What does a Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (2014) cost?