Better late than never? Mitsubishi jumps on the coupé-SUV bandwagon
Mitsubishi has taken the wraps off the all-new 2018 Eclipse Cross ahead of its world debut at the Geneva Motor Show next month.
It's the latest crossover in the Japanese brand's stable and it will join the ASX (aka Outlander Sport/RVR) and Outlander when it goes on sale in early 2018 in Europe.
Judging from the "Eclipse" part of the model's name we were expecting something more spectacular and sporty-looking. Mitsubishi is adamant, however, that the new C-segment crossover will appeal "to style-conscious drivers" thanks to the combination of sharp coupé looks and muscular SUV stance. We beg to differ — there's nothing sporty about that fat rear end.
Then again, design is always subjective, and the BMW X6 got the same reception from the media when it came out. But this is 2017, and the coupé-SUV thing is already nine years old.
Design highlights for the Eclipse Cross include the trademark Dynamic Shield front end, the wedge profile with a bold belt line, short overhangs, and the steeply-raked rear window divided by the stretched LED taillights.
Inside, the Eclipse Cross features a modern cockpit with a tablet-like infotainment screen, Touchpad Controller on the center console, and a new Head Up Display. On a more practical note, the crossover offers 60:40-split folding rear seats with a long slide-and-recline adjustment.
At launch, the 2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross will offer two powertrains: a new 1.5-liter direct-injection turbocharged gasoline engine and the 2.2-liter common rail direct-injection turbodiesel engine. The gas unit is available with a new CVT transmission with 8-speed Sport Mode manual override, while the oil-burner is modified specifically for the Eclipse Cross and works with a new 8-speed automatic transmission.
The Eclipse Cross uses an electronically-controlled 4WD system that sends all torque to the front wheels in normal conditions and diverts an "optimum amount" of it to the rear wheels when the front axle lacks grip. The Super All-Wheel Control (S-AWC) integrated vehicle dynamics control system also features brake-activated Active Yaw Control (AYC).
Finally, Mitsubishi says the 2018 Eclipse Cross features increased body rigidity (compared to what?), allowing for "precise handling and superior vehicle stability."