Skip to main content

Not being excited about the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV is a serious mistake. This SUV has astronomical upgrades to consider and could put Mitsubishi back on the map. We were honestly surprised by the 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV during our week of testing that involved road trips, off-roading, and running errands in crowded downtown areas. 

Is the 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV good for road trips??

The 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV parked near mountain scenary
2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV | Allison Barfield, MotorBiscuit

Yes, the 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV is great for road trips. Is was recently added to the lineup with advanced upgrades as part of the new generation that launched in 2022. It serves as a fuel-sipping economical option but doesn’t skimp on value. 

It’s more comfortable, athletic, and premium than you think. The Outlander even has above-average off-roading chops. Despite having a loud hybrid engine, a tiny third row, and limited cargo solutions, it’s pretty well-rounded. 

We covered tons of ground on and off the pavement to discover the highs and lows that this plug-in hybrid SUV has to offer. Some aspects are surprisingly good. 

1. The 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander is efficient 

The2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV charging
2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV | Allison Barfield, MotorBiscuit

You don’t have to drive the 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander in Eco Mode to achieve excellent fuel economy. We spent most of our time in Normal, or Tarmac mode as the regenerative brakes consistently returned a solid charge to the batteries. 

We took a 133-mile road trip and started with 235 miles in the tank and no charge. At the end of our journey, we had 195 miles and gained an electric range of 20 miles. 

You can see the electric charge tick up as you drive, and the digital guage cluster shows you how much energy you gain while slowing down, breaking, and accelerating. You can drive in electric mode, hybrid, or gas only. You can start out by using your electric charge or save it for later. 

The Outlander PHEV gets an EPA-estimated 23 mpg in the city and up to 28 mpg on the highway with gas only. With a charge, it gets up to 64 MPGe and has an all-eletric range of 38 miles. It can travel up to 420 miles on a single tank. 

But our economy seemed to be stuck on 25.8 MPG the entire week. Our driving mode, style, and even off-roading didn’t move the needle. It might need to be fixed, and we won’t hold it against the Mitsubishi. 

2. The Outlander PHEV is sporty 

The 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV is fun to drive with that instant electric torque and available steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters to enhance control. 

It pairs a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine with two electric motors and a 20-kWh battery to provide 248 hp and 332 lb-ft of torque. It can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 6.5 seconds with direct steering, smooth transmission shifts, and excellent cornering. 

The Tarmac Mode spices things up on the pavement with a faster acceleration response and stiffer braking performance to make the most of your time on the pavement. The 18.05-foot turning radius makes it agile and easy to maneuver confidently. 

3. The 2023 Outlander PHEV can go off-roading 

The 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV off-roading in mud
2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV | Allison Barfield, MotorBiscuit

The 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV features the Mitsubishi Super-All Wheel Control (S-AWC_ all-wheel drive system. It automatically sends power to specific wheels as needed to power through curves and dominate the terrain. 

It feels capable and has plenty of power to get through mud, sand, gravel, and other slippery conditions. It could have more power for deeper mud and steep inclines, but it provides much stability and control. 

There are off-roading modes for Snow, Gravel, and Mud. The Gravel mode was the best option for our light off-roading test. Overall, the Outlander PHEV feels smooth and well-planted over rough terrain. 

It has an 8.5-inch ground clearance, which is a great start. But we would like to see more protection than the plastic cladding has to offer and beefier tires. 

4. The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV is comfortable 

The 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV interior from the side
2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV interior | Mitsubishi

We found the 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV to be a relaxing and comfortable place to spend time. It has a smooth ride over the pavement and quickly dampens larger impacts with controlled body motions. 

The interior is pretty quiet, but wind and road noise is slightly noticeable at highway speeds. It mostly provides a peaceful experience, but the hybrid engine emits a loud wheeze and electric whirls sound occasionally. 

Also, the front leather seats have tons of adjustment controls to find the perfect driving position. Those seats are supportive and well-padded for hours of comfort, with enough room for various body shapes and sizes. 

The adaptive cruise control system is smart without being too sensitive. It’s easy to adjust your speed and distance from other cars. The steering assist system is convenient after a long day of travel and safely requires you to keep your hands on the wheel.

5. The Outlander PHEV can be downright luxurious 

The 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV interior
2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV interior | Mitsubishi

The 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander has an upscale interior with premium leather upholstery that features contrasting shades of black, orange, white, and tan. The orange accents and vibrant stitching make things pop, as metal accents complete the look. 

Plus, you can opt for vibrant ambient lighting, a panoramic sunroof, a nine-speaker Bose premium audio system, a wireless phone charging pad, a power liftgate, a 360-degree camera display, and enhanced safety features. 

It has a simple yet elegant design that prioritizes driver comfort. However, the tech could be improved. It seems somewhat dated, even though the digital gauge cluster provides crucial information. The camera doesn’t have the best resolution, but the navigation system is smart and fast. 

Stay tuned as we continue processing the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV for a full-length review. More insights are on the way.