Europeans will get their first glimpse of the 2016 Mitsubishi Outlander plug-in hybrid this month, with sales also set to begin in September.
The Outlander PHEV has been completely revamped for 2016, with new styling, improved handling and a smoother ride among its changes. But this redesign didn’t come about because the model was lagging in sales: the Outlander PHEV has been one of Europe’s top-selling plug-in vehicles.
Similar success has been reported in Japan. Almost 2,400 Outlander PHEVs were sold in July – the same month the redesigned SUV debuted. In comparison, only 2,300 units of the plug-in hybrid had sold in Japan during the first half of the year.
“The Outlander PHEV was first launched in Japan in January 2013 as the world’s first plug-in hybrid 4WD SUV,” said Mitsubishi. “Now exported to 48 countries including those in Europe, it is the world’s fastest selling [plug-in hybrid vehicle] with cumulative sales of some 70,000 units.”
After waiting for several years, the U.S. is also getting closer to its turn for the plug-in SUV.
“At this point we haven’t really released any information on the U.S.-spec Outlander PHEV, but I can tell you that it will have the new Outlander’s styling, and is expected to come Spring 2016,” Laura Conrad, the senior specialist for Mitsubishi’s public relations team, told us earlier this year.
If the U.S. version matches the European Outlander PHEV, it will feature a dual motor four-wheel drive powertrain, with motors powering both the front and rear wheels.
Mitsubishi plans to show the 2016 Outlander PHEV at the 66th International Motor Show, which is scheduled to begin in Frankfurt on September 17. Appearing alongside the SUV will be a rally version, set to compete in the Baja Portalegre 500 cross-country rally, and the brand’s new Vehicle-to-Home system that can tap into the Outlander PHEV for backup power to the home.