As seen on:

SMH Logo News Logo

Call 1300 303 181

Australia’s Best New Car News, Reviews and Buying Advice

Private Fleet Car Review: 2016 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS Diesel.


Mitsubishi’s update to the Outlander is a mix of looks and minor suspension work. There’s revisions front and rear to the sheetmetal and refinements to their engines. A Wheel Thing takes the 2016 Outlander diesel XLS for a run, backing up from the petrol version tested recently.

It’s the 2.2L diesel that Mitsubishi has had for some time, with 110 kW and a “decent” 360 Nm of torque, between a usable but lightswitchy 1500 to 2750 revs. It’s an on/off proposition, thanks simply to two things: the placement of the accelerator pedal and the CVT transmission.2016 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS diesel engine

The pedal is placed so the upper half of the foot, the part that most people use to press, is not right on the middle or upper section of said pedal, therefore it feels as if the toes were pressing in the lower half. The rev range then kicks in; light pressure had the XLS move away sluggishly, a decent prod had the torque explode through the drivetrain and pushing people into their seats as the vehicle suddenly surges forward.

The CVT itself is reasonable enough, but like so many CVT’s it never feels as if the full ability of the engine is being put down to the tarmac, whether it’s a lower torque petrol or a gruntier diesel, as is the case more and more in SUV’s.

The Suit/On The Inside.
Click here:A Wheel Thing reviews the 2016 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS petrol. for the review of the petrol powered XLS and the Outlander’s new clothes.2016 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS diesel rear2016 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS diesel dash2016 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS diesel front2016 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS diesel cargo2016 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS diesel front seats2016 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS diesel rear seats2016 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS diesel wheel2016 Mitsubishi Outlander XLS diesel door handle position

On The Road.
It’s here that, oddly, the diesel’s ride quality differs from the petrol. It’s stiffer, more taut, less compliant but still comfortable and less prone to understeer compared to the petrol version. There’s more steering feedback, it’s not as somewhat vague or numb in comparison with even the braking system feeling more up to the task. It’s all quite…odd.

The overall impression was one of more solidity, more coherence, a more holistic feel; once the engine and gearbox had settled on where they wanted to be, the XLS hummed along quietly, with 100 kmh ticking the engine over at just under 2000 rpm, right in the middle of the peak torque figure. The positioning of the accelerator makes this a bit more difficult than it needs to be, but overtaking and freeway acceleration is an easy affair thanks to the torque.

However, again, the CVT dulls the experience, with that sense of sapping the ability of the engine and drivetrain to take full advantage of that 360 Nm. “Normal” driving just doesn’t imbue the same sense of pizazz and zap that a traditional hydraulic gearbox does, and even with preset ratios selected via the paddles there’s little improvement.

The Wrap.
The XLS, in kit and fit and finish, is fine. The diesel is lusty yet hobbled somewhat. The ride is better controlled and economy (6.2L/100 km combined, claimed from the 60 litre tank) offers Sydney to Melbourne range on the highway system.

The XLS audio system here DOES have a DAB+ (Digital Audio Broadcast +) system, which was pretty clear in reception up to Sydney’s lower Blue Mountains (where stations don’t guarantee signal) but, like any car based digital system, was prone to dropoff (also known as the cliff fall effect) unexpectedly.

As a package, the diesel is, A Wheel Thing feels, a better proposition than the torqueless petrol version. As a result, of the two, this is clearly the pick.

For pricing and details, head to the website: 2016 Mitsubishi Outlander range

The Car: Mitsubishi Outlander XLS diesel.
Engine: 2.2L diesel.
Transmission: Constant Variable Transmission (CVT).
Power/Torque: 110 kW/360 Nm @ 3500/1500-2750 rpm.
Tank size: 60L.
Economy: 6.2L per 100 km (combined cycle.
Dimensions: (L x W X H in mm): 4695 x 1810 x 1640.
Wheelbase/Ride Height: 2670 mm/ 190 mm (unladen).
Seating: seven, two rear fold down, 60/40 split fold middle row.
Weight (dry): 1535 kg.
Cargo: 128L/477L/1608L depending on seating configuration.
Service/Warranty: refer to the Mitsubishi website for terms and conditions.