The world’s first plug-in hybrid crossover and the best-selling PHEV in Europe has arrived in America.
The all-new 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) starts at the MSRP of $34,595.
The Outlander PHEV is a perfect culmination of Mitsubishi’s 100-year history of automotive excellence: over 50 years of electromobility and decades of four-wheel drive technology honed on the international rally circuit.
Featuring a highly efficient 2.0-liter gas engine and two high-performance electric motors, along with Mitsubishi’s superior Super All-Wheel Control (S-AWC) system, the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV delivers SUV capabilities and EV fuel economy.
The Outlander PHEV represents a fusion of the EV technologies developed by Mitsubishi for models such as the i-MiEV, S-AWC technologies honed from the Lancer Evolution, and SUV know-how gained from the Montero. The result is a groundbreaking new model that brings together the superior environmental performance and efficiency of an EV, the stability and handling of S-AWC, and the practicality of a crossover.
“The Outlander PHEV is an all-new driving experience that is unmatched in the market; until now, this type of vehicle has been exclusive to the premium segment,” said Don Swearingen, executive vice president and COO, MMNA. “Offering EV technology in a very capable crossover will satisfy a consumer need that’s been missing in the marketplace.
The Outlander PHEV offers seating for five passengers and room for their gear, 1500lb towing capability, SUV practicality and a fantastic Super All-Wheel Control system, all wrapped in an environmentally friendly EV system.”
PHEV System with Twin Electric Motors All-Wheel Control
The highlight of the all-new Outlander PHEV is the use of Mitsubishi’s sophisticated PHEV system. It uses two full-time, high-output electric motors separately mounted at the front and rear axles to instantly supply torque on demand for incredibly responsive performance with agile all-wheel drive. The front electric motor is positioned transaxle-style on the left side of the gas engine and has an output of 60 kW. The front motor is smaller and lighter with a higher output enhanced version of the permanent magnet synchronous electric motor used in the Mitsubishi i-MiEV.
The system features a front-mounted generator that converts mechanical power to electricity and continuously charges the drive battery, while a Power Drive Unit (PDU) helps to convert the electric power and send it to the front motor.
The rear 60 kW motor and Electric Motor Control Unit (EMCU) are mounted beneath the rear cargo area subfloor. Both the front PDU and rear EMCU are intelligent control units that contribute to heightened energy efficiency and optimal motor control.
For non-electric driving, a clean and efficient 2.0-liter gasoline engine is utilized.
“The twin electric motors and economical gasoline engine optimize performance according to how you want to drive. It’s smooth and quiet with abundant power to tackle a variety of different driving conditions with highly efficient purpose,” said Nathan Berg, senior product manager, MMNA.
The battery that supplies the electricity for the motors is a high-capacity 12kWh lithium-ion battery pack developed specifically for the PHEV system.
The battery pack consists of 80 cells configured in a series, with a total voltage measuring 300V and a total storage capacity of 12kWh. The battery is located in a dust and waterproof encasement positioned beneath the passenger compartment subfloor and between the front and rear axles (with no intrusion into the passenger compartment whatsoever).
Regenerative braking is also used to generate electricity for the system. During deceleration (braking), the front and rear electric motors function as generators so that electricity can be generated and fed back into the lithium-ion drive battery pack. Regenerative braking occurs when the vehicle is in motion while the accelerator pedal is not being pressed (coasting) or when the driver engages the brakes by pressing the brake pedal. The level of regenerative braking can be conveniently selected by the driver at any time using the steering wheel paddle shifters.