Mitsubishi may have faced some pesky little battery-fire issues with its Outlander Plug-in Hybrid earlier this year in Japan, but as far as Europeans are concerned, the SUV is pretty darn safe. The Japanese automaker says the Outlander PHEV just received the highest-possible five-star rating by the 2013 Europe New Car Assessment Program (NCAP). Mitsubishi notes that other awards for the SUV include the Car of the Year Japan award for 2013-14 and, more recently, the Automotive Researchers' and Journalists' Conference of Japan's RJC Technology of the Year 2014.

The Outlander PHEV had its global debut in Japan earlier this year but then faced some safety issues when a battery pack at a Yokohama dealership overheated in March (Mitsubishi had a similar issue with one of its i-MiEV electric vehicles), damaging one of the three blocks of cells in the battery and disabling the vehicle in the process. The incident temporarily stopped production of the model, which eventually started sales in Europe in October. US sales are slated to start around September 2014. The Outlander PHEV can go up to 34 miles on electricity alone and gets about 143 MPGe. Check out Mitsubishi's press release below.
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Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) announced that the company's Outlander PHEV mid-size crossover/SUV featuring MMC's own Plug-in Hybrid EV System has been awarded a maximum 5-star rating in the 2013 Euro NCAP (New Car Assessment Program), an overall safety rating system for new models launched in Europe*1. Euro NCAP puts new cars through some of the world's toughest safety tests, including an array of crash tests.

String of Awards Redeems "@earth TECHNOLOGY"

This recognition is the latest in a string of awards that confirms MMC's @earth TECHNOLOGY, the technologies that embody MMC's Drive@earth pillars of environmental responsibility, driving pleasure, and toughness and safety – all of which are combined in the Outlander PHEV, the pinnacle of @earthTECHNOLOGY.

The Outlander PHEV was awarded the "Car of the Year Japan*2 2013-2014's Innovation Award" for its environmental performance and motive performance.

In addition, the Outlander PHEV's Plug-in Hybrid EV System was recognized for its environmental performance and driving dynamics by the Automotive Researchers' and Journalists' Conference of Japan*3 (RJC), which in November named the plug-in hybrid EV system the "RJC Technology of the Year 2014."

About the Outlander PHEV

The world's first plug-in hybrid crossover/SUV, the Outlander PHEV is an "electric car that changes itself" and represents a fusion of the EV technologies developed by MMC for models such as the i-MiEV, 4WD technologies honed in the Lancer Evolution, and SUV know-how gained from the Pajero (Montero or Shogun in some countries).

The Outlander PHEV is fitted with a combination of several advanced safety features including e-Assist*4 advanced safety technologies, Reinforced Impact Safety Evolution (RISE*5) high-rigidity impact safety body and SRS air bags and harmonizes high levels of performance in environment, safety and premium quality.

*1: For more information, please visit
*2: Held by the Car of the Year Japan's supervisory board, made up primarily of Japanese automobile journalists.
*3: A non-profit organization consisting of Japan-based automotive critics and journalists.
*4: Called "e-Assist" only in the Japanese market. A combination of advanced technologies including Forward Collision Mitigation (FCM) which automatically applies the brakes as necessary to help avoid a collision with the vehicle ahead or reduce impact damage in the event of a collision; Lane Departure Warning (LDW) which alerts the driver when the vehicle starts to drift from its lane, aiding driver concentration; and Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), a radar-based system that automatically maintains a driver-adjustable distance with the vehicle in front, reducing the chance of a collision if the vehicle in front suddenly stops.
*5: Reinforced Impact Safety Evolution (RISE), MMC's patented safety body construction system. For more information please visit

About Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc.

Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc., (MMNA) is responsible for all research & development, manufacturing, marketing, sales and financial services for Mitsubishi Motors in the United States. MMNA sells sedans and crossovers/SUVs through a network of approximately 400 dealers. MMNA is leading the way in the development of highly-efficient, affordably-priced new gasoline-powered automobiles while using its industry-leading knowledge in battery electric vehicles to develop future EV and PHEV models. For more information, contact the Mitsubishi Motors News Bureau at (888) 560-6672 or visit

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