Like a stiff breeze off the White Cliffs of Dover, UK sales of the Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in Hybrid may have the wind at its back. That's because the Japanese automaker isn't charging any extra, relative to the diesel-powered Outlander. And UK's Duxford Auto Group says it's already feeling the positive effects.

The auto dealership is conducting about a dozen test drives a day for potential (and curious) customers, Cambridge News says. More tellingly, Duxford Auto is rebooking another dozen or so test drives per weekend day because of pent-up interest. The company hasn't released UK sales figures, Mitsubishi spokesman Dan Irvin told AutoblogGreen, but Duxford Auto says sales will be stronger than expected, especially since the Outlander PHEV is exempt from UK congestion charges. Mitsubishi introduced the Outlander PHEV to the UK this spring. The bonus there was that, inclusive of a UK government grant, the car was priced at the equivalent of about $47,000, or about the same price as the base diesel-powered version. The model, which pairs a 2.0-liter gas engine with an electric motor, has an all-electric range of 32 miles.

Mitsubishi ran into problems with the Outlander PHEV in spring 2013 after a battery melted at a Japan dealership, causing the company to halt production on the model. The company later discovered that some of the batteries were short-circuiting due to a flaw in the screening process. Once those issues were solved, Mitsubishi doubled its production rate last year to make up for lost time. Meanwhile, Automotive News reported last month that California regulators will delay sales of the model in that state to late next year or early 2016 because of battery issues. The state, easily the largest US plug-in vehicle market, wants Mitsubishi to include battery-degradation monitors for the car's lithium-ion batteries.

Mitsubishi spokesman Alex Fedorak refuted the report that the Outlander PHEV may not be available in the US until 2016. "Launch plans for the US version of the Outlander PHEV remain unchanged with an expected debut of Fall 2015," Fedorak told AutoblogGreen.


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  • 17 Comments
      Smoking_dude
      • 6 Months Ago
      It will never com to the USA soon. meanwhile half europe is happy with the outlander phev. it is a great success. What is really nice that it can be fast charged. most plug-ins have only super slow chargers because the mfg assumed that once the battery is empty the driver will use gas. so short breaks can be used to fill'er up. Quote: "The state, easily the largest US plug-in vehicle market, wants Mitsubishi to include battery-degradation monitors for the car's lithium-ion batteries." well I bet this will be available in the 2nd phev. does the volt monitor the degregation too? or the pip or the ford energi models? what about the degregation of a gasoline car?
        Ben Crockett
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Smoking_dude
        They actually delete the fast charge port to delivery to Australia strangely - we don't have any infrastructure so it is short sighted view. I doubt this will happy for US delivery.
      Jesse Gurr
      • 6 Months Ago
      It is info like this that makes me disappointed that Ford did not follow through on a plug in Escape. They had the system, they should have started making it. I believe they dropped the ball on that. Good for Mitsu for picking up on the pent up demand for a plug in SUV and actually selling one. I want to buy one but I don't know if I can wait until late next year.
      Marco Polo
      • 6 Months Ago
      The PHEV Outlander has been very well received in Australia.
        Actionable Mango
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Marco Polo
        It's very well received everywhere. They can't build them fast enough. The single source factory for batteries is not only holding them back, but it seems really risky too, from the prospective of a fire or natural disaster or something.
        DaveMart
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Marco Polo
        That is a surprise. When you commented on it before the price did not sound viable. It is a great economic move here in the UK,
          DaveMart
          • 6 Months Ago
          @DaveMart
          Its good of Nissan to reduce Mitsubishi's prices like that! ;-)
          Marco Polo
          • 6 Months Ago
          @DaveMart
          @ DaveMart Ah ha, sorry what I meant to say was Nissan lowered their prices due to the high value of the $Aus, and Mitsubishi followed immediately after.
          Marco Polo
          • 6 Months Ago
          @DaveMart
          @ DaveMart Nissan effected a price reduction. The base model is now about @Aus 46,000 and the top of the range, fully loaded around $55,000 .
        DarylMc
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Marco Polo
        I'm doing my best to spot one on the road. It's not so easy when it is one of the few plug in hybrids which looks like a conventional vehicle.
        Ben Crockett
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Marco Polo
        Yes, agree. My local regional dealer from where I purchased my Outlander PHEV said they had sold about 9 including 2 to the one family!
      chanonissan
      • 6 Months Ago
      this is good news for us , more choices, but must commend mitsubishi and nissan for stepping up in affordable EV and know PHEV, yes nissan will have one also next year. http://www.whatcar.com/car-news/nissan-qashqai-plug-in-hybrid-confirmed/1211420
      Ben Crockett
      • 6 Months Ago
      I am really enjoying the smooth operation and efficiency of EV mode and the refill at home convience of my Outlander PHEV. Favourite feature is the toggle adjustable regen located directed behind the steering wheel which can be adjusted on the fly from strong regen 5 to coast (no regen) 0 - so can optimise efficency of coasting ad braking - much better than setting and forgetting on one setting. In Australia where I purchased mine I chose the more expensive Aspire model which is $AUD 55K so is more expensive than diesel model but than we have no grants or rebates - base model is just under $AUD 50K. Have ordered a 9.5kw PV system to be fitted to power the house and charge the car and will also offset my night charge. As slogan goes "Love that car"!
        DarylMc
        • 6 Months Ago
        @Ben Crockett
        Hi Ben My local motoring organisation just released their total ownership costs for various 2014 vehicles. http://www.racq.com.au/travel/drive_travel/running_costs/vehicle_running_costs I won't comment on the methods and various factors could swing it wildly but that is what they have come up with. The Outlander PHEV comes in around the same total ownership cost estimate as Ford Falcon, Holden Commodore and Toyota Aurion. That is not so bad for a vehicle which can run around the city on electricity. Installing 9.5kW of panels sounds excellent. I think some sort of monitoring for the solar output is a good feature. Mine is set up to email daily outputs at 8.00pm and you can quickly notice if something is not right rather than find out in the quarterly bill.
          Ben Crockett
          • 6 Months Ago
          @DarylMc
          Interesting comparison - I also factor in resale and expected demand for the vehicle at end of period ownership - SUVs have become much more popular than large family sedans as the vehicle of choice for families - so I guesstimate that it will hold its value reasonably well. Good points on the PV monitoring - I want to install live monitoring as well which let's you know in real time how much energy you are producing, exporting and importing.
      Jeff
      • 6 Months Ago
      What exactly is a "battery-degradation monitor"?
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