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Review: Mitsubishi's Eclipse Cross - everything you need to know

 

Mitsubishi, famous for sturdy 4x4s, launches another significant intervention into the smaller SUV segment: the mid-sized Eclipse Cross.

What's new?

With this smart new model, falling somewhere between a crossover and a medium-sized SUV, Mitsubishi is signalling a change of intent away from its reputation for reliability and sturdiness, and towards premium quality.

The Eclipse Cross has an upmarket cabin, smart new looks and bags of kit and driver assists.

It's keenly priced too, with entry level models coming in around the £21,275 mark and the flagship trim costing around £27,900.

It is available in three trim levels - Eclipse Cross 2, Eclipse Cross 3 and Eclipse Cross 4. Competitors include the Peugeot 3008 and Seat Ateca.

It fits into the Mitsubishi range above the ASX and below the larger Outlander, which in turn looks up at the famous Shogun 4x4.

What does it look like?

The front design of the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross features the company's trademark Dynamic Shield concept, which refers to the protective shield shape visually formed by the black central area and highlighted by bold brightwork on either side of the grill.

Distinctive auxiliary lamps are recessed deep in the front fascia adding "drama and sophistication" to the SUV's front-on appearance.

At the rear, the high-mounted, stretched rear lamps divide the rear window into eye-catching upper and lower segments and when illuminated the tubular LED and central LED brake lights form a single bar of light running across the tail, giving the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross a broad and unmistakable appearance from the rear.

Under the bonnet

There are two engines from launch, with others expected soon including potentially an hybrid version drawing inspiration from its platform-sibling the Outlander PHEV.

The new 1.5-litre direct-injection turbocharged petrol engine is available with a new CVT transmission with 8-speed Sport Mode manual override.

For diesel fans, Mitsubishi's existing 2.2-litre common rail direct-injection turbocharged diesel engine is modified specifically for Eclipse Cross and is fitted with a new 8-speed automatic transmission.

Drive functions

The Eclipse Cross will also be available with two-or four-wheel drive, the latter incorporating the latest generation of Mitsubishi's Super All-wheel Control (S-AWC) system that offers a choice of three advanced drive modes - Auto, Snow and Gravel.

Inside the cabin

The company's designers have opted for the popular cockpit-style driving environment in a roomy cabin enhanced by slide-and-recline adjustment for the 60:40 split rear seat on all models.

To optimise loading comfort and facilitate loads of various sizes and shapes, the rear seat back has eight different recline settings and the base has up to 200mm of travel. This gives lots of shapes and options to maximise loadspace.

Passenger safety

The Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross protects its occupants, other drivers and pedestrians with an array of safety features and systems.

Impressively, all versions including the entry-level variant, will have Lane Departure Warning, Forward Collision Mitigation (FCM) that uses radar technology to detect a risk of collision, ABS, Active Stability Control, Hill Start Assist, Brake Assist, seven airbags, dusk and rain sensors and automatic operation of the headlamps' dipped beam.

Entry-level model

As indicated, Eclipse Cross is well specified, with even the entry-level 2 version offering features such as a touch-pad controller, Smartphone Display Audio compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

There is also a rear view camera, DAB radio with six speakers, cruise control, climate control air conditioning, LED Daytime Running Lights, Bluetooth connectivity for hands-free calls, 16-inch alloy wheels, privacy glass and heated door mirrors.

Mid-level model

The Eclipse Cross 3 builds on the specification of the 2 versions by a range of extras including 18-inch alloy wheels, a head-up display, heated front seats, front and rear parking sensors, and electrically folding door mirrors. You can spec 4WD and automatic versions.

Flagship model

Eclipse Cross 4, the range-topper, piles on goodies like leather trim, electrically-adjustable driver's seat, electric opening panoramic roof, and a Rockford Fosgate Premium sound system with nine speakers.

It also features a suite of advanced driver assistance systems including LED headlamps, 360˚parking camera, Blind Spot Warning (BSW), Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), Lane Change Assist (LCA) and Adaptive Cruise Control (automatic only).

Special launch edition

There's also a special UK 'First Edition' model available for a limited amount of time, with a suite of fancy extra like carbon-finish bumper corner and a side extension kit with red inserts.

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