Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross review – A familiar nameplate totally transformed

Mitsubishi’s original Eclipse as many of us remember it by was a sporty coupe/hatchback that was fun to drive. The earlier generation Eclipses even had all wheel drive and turbos, plus convertible variants, but in 2012 Mitsubishi decided put the Eclipse out in the pasture as popularity declined, sales waned, and its corporate financial woes grew. Mitsubishi pretty much has become a forgotten brand to many Americans. It wasn’t all like that as the brand was quite popular in the United States throughout the 1990s and into the mid-2000s, but it gradually slipped into irrelevance. The Lancer sedan was discontinued in the US and Canada at the end of the 2017 model year (Redesigned and Re-engineered Mitsubishi Lancer still lives on in Taiwan). Now the North American lineup consists of the aging Mirage, Outlander, and Outlander Sport models, but Mitsubishi hasn’t given up on the US. Mitsubishi is looking to liven up its lineup with the all-new Eclipse Cross crossover.

Will the Eclipse Cross crossover succeed in livening up Mitsubishi’s lineup and overall sales? Lets find out!

Style & Specs:

The crossover segment is getting more crowded than ever with automakers scrambling to develop and add more crossovers and SUVs into their lineup. The Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross is one of them, it competes with the likes of the Luxgen U5, Luxgen U6, Chevrolet Equinox, Ford Escape, Honda CR-V, Mazda CX-5, etc. Styling-wise it is attractive and sporty looking. The front end features Mitsubishi’s dynamic shield design language, while the sloped rear gives it a coupe or fastback style complete with LED tail lights. The engine that powers the Eclipse Cross is a newly designed 1.5L DOHC MIVEC 4-cylinder turbo with direct injection that produces 163hp. The standard transmission is a CVT that includes paddle shifters for those whose want to change their own gears.

The Eclipse Cross used in this review features the S-AWC (Super All Wheel Control) with active HUD display and a Rockford Fosgate 9 speaker audio system. There is a front wheel drive Eclipse Cross available as well.

The interior is welcoming with a large 8 inch screen mounted on the dashboard featuring SDA (Smartphone Link Display Audio) with a touch pad in the center console where you can also control the several settings with your fingers. iPhone users can rejoice as this crossover syncs with your iPhone using Apple CarPlay. There is no integrated GPS navigation as Mitsubishi expects most people will just sync up their phones and get directions from there. The interior is spacious enough for five adults and has lots of cargo room behind the rear seats. The rear seats can be slid forward to allow for more cargo space or it can folded down for bulk items. All passengers can appreciate the double sunroof.

The measurement dimensions of the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross:

Wheelbase 2,670 mm (105.1 in), Length 4,405 mm (173.4 in), Width, 1,805 mm (71 in), and Height 1,685 mm (66.3 in)

On the road:

How does it drive? Even though the vehicle weighs in at a hefty 1600kgs (3520lbs) the Eclipse Cross is still capable enough keeping up with the traffic in the city. Acceleration is is brisk, but you can feel the engine does work hard under all that weight. At highway speeds the Eclipse Cross is smooth and quiet. Handling-wise the steering is engaging and turning radius is tight and precise. The suspension is firm and helps keep the ride stable despite all the bumpy pothole ridden roads used during the test drive. Active safety features abound as this crossover features adaptive cruise control, blind spot warning, lane departure warning, emergency braking assist, etc.

I tested out the one of the safety features in the urban jungle and system alerts me of “rear cross traffic” when turning back onto the main road.

Stars:

4 out of 5

Mitsubishi is back! The Eclipse Cross looks to add to the ever growing crossover segment and its quite a capable contender too. This crossover will bring the Mitsubishi brand back to relevance. Despite it not being a coupe, but rather an sporty like SUV or crossover, it will definitely bring customers back into Mitsubishi showrooms. A welcome addition to families who are looking to buy a crossover.

Prices start at $NTD 959,000 ($32,500USD) for the base front wheel drive model (upholstered seating, 16 inch wheels rather than the 18 inch wheels, different dasboard minus the 8 screen and active safety features). The top of the line S-AWC (torque-vectoring all-wheel drive as it is known elsewhere) has a leather interior, a suite of active safety features, HUD display, and 18 inch wheels. The top of the line S-AWC model is priced at $NTD 1,160,000 ($39,250 USD).

In the United States, the prices will be much lower as import duties are lower than that of this Taiwan model driven in this review. As of writing Mitsubishi USA plans on introducing the Eclipse Cross with a starting price at $23,995 USD for the base model and $30,995 USD for the top of the line SEL Touring, which is similarly configured as the vehicle used in this review.

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