Unlikely Comparo: Hyundai Kona Electric vs Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV vs Toyota C-HR


Result confirms our suspicions.

Consumers in the market for a crossover have a lot of different options. That includes just how heavily they want to lean on electricity as a fuel source. In this unique comparison, Autoexpress takes a look a hybrid, a plug-in hybrid, and an all-electric. Represented here by the Toyota C-HR, the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, and the Hyundai Kona Electric, we imagine our regular readers would naturally prefer the latter. Still, it’s good to know the strengths and weaknesses of each.

Unfortunately, the Toyota C-HR hybrid is not coming to the U.S., but much of the findings are still relevant. It is the least expensive of the three in up-front costs at 26,665 British pounds ($33,688). It does offer the best handling of the group as well. However, the drive train doesn’t really have the gusto to go along with that verve. Here are their words describing it:

The engine sounds coarse and feels wheezy, as its performance figures here show. The C-HR took 14.1 seconds to accelerate from 0-60mph, while its 14.6-second 30 to 70mph time was some way behind the 8.3 and 7.9 seconds we recorded in the Kona and Outlander respectively.

The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV is the largest of the trio. A strong seller in the UK, the publication is impressed with the improvement in its ride quality for 2019. Not perfect, by any means, but improved. Overall, though, they say it “didn’t feel especially good to drive.” It was sluggish compared to the Kona Electric. They did find it a practical vehicle, however, though price-wise it is handily the most expensive of the three at 35,900 British pounds ($49,889). It still managed to get a higher rating than the Toyota.

The Hyundai Kona Electric tested here was the 39-kWh version that’s not coming to the U.S. These shores will only see the 64-kWh variant. Slower than its big-battery sibling, it still had enough gumption to beat out the other two vehicles here. It cruises from a standstill to 60 miles an hour in 8.6 seconds. It got off the line especially well and still had enough zip, they say, for passing at highway speeds. Handling wasn’t as crisp as in the Toyota, but they did found the ride to be quite comfortable and refined. As for price, it starts at 28,720 British pounds ($36,654), which isn’t far off from the Toyota C-HR hybrid.

In its final verdict, AutoExpress rates the Hyundai Kona Electric as the best of the trio. The quiet provided by an electric motor, along with good road noise suppression made the ride more relaxing and enjoyable, they say. Also mentioned are fuel savings. Petrol prices in the UK are higher than the U.S., so that’s an important consideration. Chalk up one more win for all-electric.

Source: AutoExpress

Categories: Comparison, Hyundai, Mitsubishi, Toyota

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10 Comments on "Unlikely Comparo: Hyundai Kona Electric vs Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV vs Toyota C-HR"

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The Outlander PHEV is the only AWD of the three.

Exactly, a better comparison would be Prius Prime AWD, upcoming Subaru PHEV, and the Outlander. Oh well. The little hatchback car won a crossover comparison somehow. Kona EV looks like a great EV car, but calling it a crossover is a stretch, the Bolt EV and i3 are actually taller. I guess black plastic trim is all you need. 😉

Brits like a car with road manners, Mitsubishi probably sucks there as it tries to be comfortable.
The elephant in the room for Kona is range. The announced range for EVs is for a mix of city, highway, … In long distance traveling, it’s more about speed and the range of 280km becomes 200km or less.
Also the Mitsubishi is bigger and a more luxury car, if at low speed the Kona is more quite, when noise matters more – at higher speeds – Mitsubishi beats it easily.
Kona is a very nice EV, but it’s still based in a car that starts below $20k.

I find the Outlander to be pretty good on the road especially around where I live as the potholes are just getting out of hand. Some roads are more holes/patches than good tarmac.
It is bigger but hardly luxury when compared to other cars.
It works very well for me.


Wow, a full size SUV Outlander PHEV is mentioned as crossover. Compared against little heightened hacth backs..

The Outlander PHEV is based on the smaller sport model, it is RAV4 sized. It is a car platform, the GS, used in the Lancer, etc. It is no “full size SUV”.

Not sure where they come up with an avg mpg of 58 for the Outlander. I’m renting the US version, 2018 model with the 12kWh battery. It’s getting about 2.3 miles per kWh, which means I may hit the advertised 26 mile range. But running in hybrid mode is not efficient using their parallel hybrid method. I’ll be doing a longer drive over the holidays and I’m guessing that will end up with something close to the EPA 25 mpg for gas which is pretty bad. My Niro PHEV will get about 31 miles EV pretty consistently (city) and when I have to hit the highway I get about 46 to 50 mpg depending on weather.

I own the 2018 model. If I neglect to plug it in, I get around 25-26. Plugging it in gets me to 45 on a regular basis.
I’m sure it could be better if I cared more about accelerating slowly, but I don’t.
I do drive in Eco Mode and with the Battery Paddles on Max most of the time, but that’s it.

“The C-HR took 14.1 seconds to accelerate from 0-60mph”

Yeah right, the C-HR hybrid can do 0-60mph in less than 11 seconds.

Without a doubt, Kona is the best one of this bunch.. Hyundai is finally taking EV’s and hybrids seriously