UPDATE: Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV U.S. Sales Delayed Again – Maybe Not

1 month ago by Eric Loveday 64

2018 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

No surprise here, right?

2018 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

It seems as though Mitsubishi will again be delaying the U.S. launch of the Outlander PHEV.

*UPDATE – Brand Amp, the agency on record for Mitsubishi, reached out to InsideEVs in response to this article. In regards to the delay, Brand amp stated:

“That simply is not true. Vehicles are on their way to dealerships as we speak.”

In the same correspondence, Bramd Amp then stated:

“We have said repeatedly that the vehicle would be at dealerships in early 2018, and reiterated that at our press conference at the LA Auto Show.”

*Editor’s note: Mitsubishi some 3 months back officially stated this in its own press release, so there’s still quite a bit of contradiction: 

“The all-new 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) will arrive in dealerships in December 2017 starting at the MSRP of $34,595.”

And of course, one can always go to Mitsubishi’s website right now and find this (below caption) on their Outlander PHEV landing page at time of press:

Mitsubishi USA’s Outlander PHEV landing page as of press (December 14th, 2017)

Therefore, this will be the millionth delay thus far (we count 8 now in total in reality) and further tarnishes Mitsubishi’s image among U.S. plug-in electric car fans. Especially those waiting for an affordable, plug-in SUV.

It’s the SUV we’ve been waiting for, but we’ll likely have to wait a bit longer.

Just earlier this week, Mitsubishi added a build your own section to its U.S. website for the Outlander PHEV. This led us to believe that Mitsubishi might’ve been on track for its planned launch of the U.S. Outlander PHEV. The latest word from Mitsu had been:

“The world’s first plug-in hybrid crossover and the best-selling PHEV in Europe is coming to America. The all-new 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) will arrive in dealerships in December 2017 starting at the MSRP of $34,595.”

Well, that no longer seems to be the case.

December is quickly coming to an end and now we’ve learned that national U.S. dealerships are told to be ready for the Outlander PHEVs arrival come next Spring.

Hybrid Cars states:

“…Kyle Cassidy, a salesman at Springfield Mitsubishi says the dealers in his region are all required to have certified trained people ready for the vehicle expected next spring.”

“A regional ride-and-drive for the dealers to participate in is planned for January or February once the 2018-spec vehicle is here, and the car is expected to make the show circuit in January…”

That sure sounds like a delay to us.

Mitsubishi does promise 50-state availability of the Outlander PHEV, but the automaker has a tiny dealership presence in the U.S. and there’s no indication how well the vehicle will be stocked, meaning it may ultimately by order only in some place.

2018 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV

Source: Hybrid Cars, hat tip to ericonline!

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64 responses to "UPDATE: Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV U.S. Sales Delayed Again – Maybe Not"

  1. Fred says:

    And wimpy 1500 lb towing capacity unlike 3300 lb towing in Europe. Not enough for me.

    1. Poughkeepsie Mike says:

      I’m pretty sure it’s the same car as in Eurpoe. Go ahead and tow something large – just go a little slower on the highway.

    2. CCIE says:

      The changed the units from kg to lbs without updating the number. It tows 1500kg.

      They probably haven’t bothered to fix the US literature because they have no intention of actually selling it here.

      1. fred says:

        Thats what I originally thought. But its not a mistake.

        Look at the website. They VERY explicitly state it as 1500 LBS.

        https://www.mitsubishicars.com/outlander-phev/2018#comfort-highlight-features

        1. CCIE says:

          Clearly they’re not the smartest group since they keep announcing intro dates and blowing them.

          It’s just too coincidental that it tows 1500kg in Europe and they show 1500lb in the US. They forgot to change the unit and keep repeating the mistake..

          1. Tom says:

            Maybe they had that guy do the unit conversions that was on this site the last couple days whining about the US number system and had to keep asking his stupid phone to convert.

          2. EVShopper says:

            It’s common for European tow ratings for the same vehcile to be higher than US ratings. Why? Because the US has terrible liability laws, more lawyers, and clueless people.

            1. CCIE says:

              We don’t have a monopoly on clueless people. They’re everywhere!

          3. Mike says:

            Ordered mine yesterday expecting delivery in 2 weeks here in NM

            1. cvs says:

              I went to showroom on Dec 30. I trade in my prius and get the Outlander PHEV. It was simply awesome and i used to get better mileage. I bought this for daily commute and it was quite and drives fast and i was so happy the way it handles.

    3. 2013VOLT says:

      The reason is because US trailers have a higher tongue weight than an equivalent European trailer. The higher tongue weight allows for higher speed stability. What is likely the case is the Outlander doesn’t have the payload capacity to support the tongue weight of a 3300 LB US trailer. The limiting factor of trailer towing capacity of most vehicles is payload.

    4. Dav8or says:

      I don’t understand why anybody cares all that much about this vehicle. Basically a 26 mpg cross over. Oh yeah, I forgot. You can drive a few miles all electric. Big deal. The electric range is so short that you’ll be buying plenty of gas anyhow.

      Get a Toyota Highlander Hybrid and get your AWD and get better gas mileage with no need to install EVSE in your home and no need to hassle with plugging it in.

      I can understand why Mitsubishi is reluctant to bring it here. Many will find out it’s a swindle. On the other hand, some will buy it just for the green HOV stickers they can use for a few years.

      1. mx says:

        Found Toyota CEO Trolling.
        Don’t be a hater Toyota, just go back to the drawing board.

      2. John says:

        It would cover my daily commute just fine since I have workplace charging. But with a growing family, the Volt just isn’t fun for trips.

      3. Tom says:

        It’ll allow you to use the vehicle as a generator for your house or while camping. So that’s pretty cool. That’s different than other EVs…you can tap the main battery supply.

        1. EVShopper says:

          The 2018 leaf has the capability.

      4. Rightofthepeople says:

        I don’t know Dave. I have been reading up on forums where actual Outlander owners talk about their real world experiences, and most of them suggest 35-40 mpg on petrol only. That plus the 25 ish all electric miles would seem to be much better than a Highlander hybrid.

      5. Mark.ca says:

        Come on man, 20 ev miles is still better than no ev miles. Most don’t drive crazy long commutes or/and can charge at work. For now, this car at this price is unmatched and welcomed.

        1. Mike says:

          My UK MODEL got 42mpg on petrol highway but mostly I averaged 180mpg as I only had a 22mile daily commute. Wish I could have brought it with me when I moved to US

      6. AndyW says:

        Been driving 2013 and 2016 models for combined 4 years now. Utterly false claims from someone who has no experience what so ever. I hihgly recommend this car. Majority of people can benefit from the electic range and it is superior city and highway driver witout the need to shift gears. Also does desent job off the road as well.

    5. Miggy says:

      Maximum towing capacity with trailer brakes (kg) 1,500
      Maximum towing capacity without trailer brakes (kg) 750
      Maximum towball download (kg) 150

    6. Derek says:

      Identical cars in EU typically get 2x + the tow rating of US.

    7. Mary brick says:

      I just get a 2017 1 month ago, haven’t had time to get out to enjoy it,and the tranmission feel like it slipping.

  2. M3 - reserved -- Niro/Leaf 2.0/Outlander - TBD says:

    the official measuring and approval may differ like US/European EV mileage ratings.

    but it’s probably the same car off the same line unless you think Mitsu skimps out on the chassis for yet to be US bound model

    1. fred says:

      Don’t want to tow well beyond their official rating. Could get into legal trouble if you get into an accident towing something much heavier, and they’d likely deny warranty coverage if something went wrong with the drivetrain and they found out about towing.

    2. mx says:

      Towing is a problem, when no one tows?
      99% of the SUV population doesn’t tow or take their vehicle into the woods.

      1. Nemo says:

        IKR? I see more whining about trailer capacity than I see actual trailers on the road, which is approximately never.

        1. Ryan says:

          90% of SUV customers don’t need an SUV.

          Me, I live in the country. I have a small trailer. I actually haul stuff.

          Outlander PHEV would fit the bill, if they’d actually ship it. It’s supposed to come in March in Canada but I suspect I have to get on some waitlist with a deposit. Which my wife will never agree to.

          Also, battery is pretty small.

  3. William says:

    Charlie Brown, in the USA , after Lucy pulls the football obviously yet again Arrrrrrg!!!!!!!!!

  4. WadeTyhon says:

    What? No way! :0

    At this point another delay isn’t news lol. It will be news once it actually ships.

  5. Assaf says:

    The Kia Niro PHEV seems to be a better choice anyway…

    – 26 miles EPA vs. 22
    – 46 mpg on gas vs. 25(!)
    – Lower price b/c it’s smaller and Korean
    – Now will likely be here before the Outlander
    – Bigger American footprint for the automaker, i.e., more available service

    1. Nick says:

      Tow rating?

      1. fred says:

        No towing allowed with Kia Niro.

    2. William says:

      Some in N.A. are waiting for a relatively affordable/reasonably priced > AWD < PHEV!

      Kia Niro will be a good 2 WD obtainable alternative, in the near future.

      And, the AWD PHEV saga now continues well into 2018!

      1. Don Zenga says:

        Hyundai delayed the Ioniq Plugin by 1 full year and it’s delayed again.

        And the Niro Plugin is also delayed, so expect any of that 2 to launch immediately.

        This is all just a game. Just few player like Tesla, Nissan, BMW are active and of late GM joined the party.

  6. kdawg says:

    Maybe there’s still time to add more kwh.

    1. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

      Maybe there is still time to wait until the budget is passed and they know what’s happened to the tax credit.

    2. Scramjett says:

      Oh, I’m pretty sure there will be. Sometime around May or June when spring is almost officially over, they’ll be like “we might as well wait until the 2019 model” and then delay it until Fall.

      I’m starting to think I’m never going to be able to get a PHEV with AWD. Maybe I should just get a Mazda CX5 instead.

  7. menorman says:

    Perhaps it’ll hit lots in CA before the end of December?

  8. bro1999 says:

    The Outlander PHEV makes the Model 3 rollout look like a flawless victory. What a joke.

    1. (⌐■_■) Trollnonymous says:

      LMAO, you beat me to it.

  9. Lou Grinzo says:

    I will believe this vehicle is coming to the US when I see multiple units on the road on a daily basis. Mitsu has so thoroughly screwed this up and embarrassed themselves it’s almost impossible to conceive.

    1. EVShopper says:

      Science!

      so boils down to being allowed to travel at posted highway speeds while towing in the US, vs being required to travel at slower speeds while towing in Europe.

    2. Chaz Smith says:

      Thanks for the link, the article is mostly enlightening.

  10. blandman says:

    Altera, Via Motors, Elio Motors, Mitsubishi…

    1. (⌐■_■) Trollnonymous says:

      and Th!nk EV.

      I think you meant Aptera?

  11. (⌐■_■) Trollnonymous says:

    Now if they come out with a larger pack for more AER, then sure, it may be worth the wait.

    If not, oh well….

  12. ericonline says:

    For what it’s worth, the Mitsubishi web site still says “Coming December 2017”.

  13. ModernMarvelFan says:

    I guess just like i-MiEV launch, they are waiting for GM and Ford to launch a better and more competitive CUV PHEV first so their sales can tank on arrival.

  14. Spin says:

    This vehicle is at the end of run. I will wait for the gen 2. I’ve waited this long already. Why would I spend 35k on old technology?

  15. Some Guy says:

    Well, if at least one car arrives on New Years Eve close to midnight at one lot somewhere in the US, there is no contradiction in the statements regarding arrival and availability. They could choose Hawaii to gain a few extra hours.

  16. ColoradoPriusPrime says:

    I am more forgiving, as we need all the automakers to transition away from fossil fuels, and it is clear that none of the transitions have been completely smooth, on time, or free of some limitations in the design, implementation, and quality. In Mitsubishi’s case, they did produce a pretty innovative vehicle for its time in Europe and other countries. Thanks to them for that, and let’s hope they can recover a presence here in the USA that will enable them to innovate further in the future here too. If not, they are still capable of doing some good things elsewhere.

  17. Don Zenga says:

    Delayed again for the 8th time. Launched in 2013-01 in Japan and 2013-10 in EU, this model has completed 5 full years. Although its powerplant is still advanced, other components and the overall model will be considered somewhat older.

    This is what Mitsu should do.
    First rename the smaller version called Outlander Sport to some other name, otherwise people will wonder whether the Outlander plugin is actually the bigger Outlander or smaller Outlander Sport. Every model with distinct dimensions should have a different name.

    Second is redesign the Outlander Plugin and install a bigger battery for at least 30 mile range.

    Third is offer another version with 60 mile range and there are many who have daily commute between 30 – 60 miles.

    And offer that model for sale in 2019-01 as MY-2019.

  18. Don Zenga says:

    Of the 4 plugins that we expected in December, only Clarity went on sale with the other 3, Outlander, Ioniq and Niro pushed back by at least few month. No problems, after all, Clarity has the highest range at 47 miles. But we have to accept the fact that the other 3 models; Hatch, Wagon and CUV have lot more interior space.

    Lets hope the Clarity sells 1,000 units of all 3 variants (PHV, BEV & FEV) this month.
    China has beaten USA by 6:1 in plugin sales and whether these automakers would like to sell electric vehicles here or not, the Chinese automakers are raising th bar.

    We are used to these delay tactics and this is employed by VW, MB, Honda, Hyundai/Kia and even the GM which reduced Volt/Bolt sales to fewer states in the beginning.

  19. Mitsu Mike says:

    Mitsubishi dealer here. Many Outlander PHEV’s are already built, have VIN’s and are on boats to the us already. Can’t speak for Springfield, but other dealers in IL have PHEV’s on order that are due to arrive in December as well. Source article also stated that the PHEV uses a cvt and it does not.

    1. Nix says:

      Mitsu Mike — Thanks for the inside info. Maybe you can clear up some more confusion. I don’t want these to be gotcha questions, or to pry into areas that are proprietary, so feel free to skip anything you can’t answer. With that said, here it goes:

      1) How are they allocating these to dealerships? Are these going to California first?

      2) Do dealerships have to get certified/trained before they can sell them, the way Chevy dealerships had to get certified/trained on the Volt?

      3) Are there going to be base models available on the lots, with no options or addon’s?

      4) Do you already have customer leads/potential buyers for all the VIN’s that are on the boats?

      5) Will you have one that is reserved for demo’s?

      6) Have they sent any early units on a tour around to dealerships for you guys to drive? (if so, feel free to elaborate).

      Bonus question: After the long wait, does a month or few really matter? (Hint: the answer is no. LOL!!)

      Thanks

      1. Mitsu Mike says:

        1.) It looks like they are going out to all markets at the same time, however a dealership must be EV certified to receive their orders (we have been since the i-MiEV).
        2.) Yes, we had our in-market training/certification a week ago.
        3.) The “base model” will be the SEL trim level, and is very similar to the current SEL on the ICE version. So base model isn’t quite the right term. The GT trim will essentially be the same as adding the Touring package to the SEL trim. It will be rare to see one without at least a few accessories though (mudguards, etc).
        4.) We have buyers lined up for many of ours, but not all of the incoming units. So if you want one in WA let me know.
        5.) That will be up to the dealers. That’s not a very typical practice out here though.
        6.) Not that I ever saw and they didn’t have one for us at our training.

        B.) That may depend on what congress does with the EV tax credit in the tax bill. Last I read, the credit made it into the reconciliation bill, but we’re not home free yet.

        1. Nix says:

          Mike, thanks so much for the responses! That definitely gives us a much more solid set of expectations on what is coming.

          It definitely sounds very real this time!

  20. IGCCENGR says:

    I think Brand Amp is providing you with “alternative facts”. Facts you won’t find anywhere else!

  21. Carl says:

    Mitsu website doesn’t say how does the PHEV Outlander drive its wheels.. Is it a series hybrid ala Volt or is it a parallel hybrid ala Prius PHEV? Maybe Mitsu Mike can elaborate on this… MitsuUSA does not return phone calls.

    1. Rightofthepeople says:

      Actually I think the Mitsubishi website does elaborate on this, you just have to dig around a little. Based on the info I read the Outlander PHEV can operate in both series and parallel mode, much like the Volt. So typically the two electric motors drive the wheels with the gas engine simply generating electricity for the motors and battery. When more power is needed, the gas engine can clutch in and help drive the front wheels directly.

      I’m not an engineer, but this seems to be a very well designed system. And most of the owner reviews from Europe are quite positive regarding the drivetrain (not as much regarding interior quality).

  22. PiP_n_ModelS says:

    I just don’t get what the point of L3 charging is with only having 22 miles. Why bother with the added cost at all on a battery that size?

  23. Ydnas7 says:

    The drivetrain is somwhere between a gm volt and a bmw i3.

    Rear axle is simply electric. No mechanical link to motor

    Front axle’ differential has both a feed from single speed ice engine and from the front electric motor. Since the ice has only one speed its only used at highway speed (ie like 5th gear in a 5 gear gearbox) at any speed less than highway it works strictly serial mode.

    Imagine a low power version of a tesla twin motor suv, but with a bmw i3 rex motor that can directly drive 1 axle at highway speed, but generally works via generator. Its actually a simple system and works well enough. Very phev centric (imagine someone adding 2 imev axles to an outlander but dropping the gearbox.) not precise but thats the idea

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