The visitors on California’s Pacific Coast Freeway was surprisingly mild for a Tuesday morning when my drive accomplice and I headed out within the 2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross. With a pleasant lengthy stretch of open street in entrance of us, she floored the compact SUV’s accelerator pedal. To be sincere, I anticipated this funds crossover to fall on its face. To my shock, the Eclipse Cross took off, if not fairly like a rocket, then actually like a jack rabbit.

The Eclipse Cross is a brand-new mannequin, slotting between the Outlander Sport and Outlander in Mitsubishi’s steady. Its title riffs on the favored Eclipse coupe that was produced from 1990 to 2012, and since this new mannequin is an SUV and never a sports activities coupe, a couple of traditionalists’ feathers have been ruffled.

The brand new Eclipse Cross suffers from poor driving dynamics, however sports activities a wonderful drivetrain.


Emme Corridor/Roadshow

Mitsubishi makes the Eclipse Cross in a base ES trim, in addition to LE, SE and SEL. Whereas front-wheel drive is commonplace on the bottom mannequin, all-wheel drive comes commonplace on each different trim. No matter your trim selection, a 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder mated to a constantly variable transmission (CVT) is the one and solely drivetrain.

Very similar to The Little Engine That May, so, too, can the Eclipse Cross. On our Mitsubishi-sponsored press drive within the twisty again nation of Malibu, California, I discovered the 154-horsepower engine to really feel exceptionally sturdy. Minimal turbo lag and fast throttle response spotlight its 184 pound-feet of torque, exhibiting there’s alternative for displacement. Many compact crossovers just like the Jeep Compass and Nissan Rogue Sport are irritating of their lack of hustle, however the Mitsu’s spry little powerplant was a blast.

The CVT, whereas not my favourite kind of transmission, is a good method to get the facility to the pavement. Paddle shifters cycle by eight digital gears, however it is a bit sloppy, particularly placing the hammer down off the road. Nonetheless, it did simply advantageous by itself, with out an excessive amount of of that buzzy, stretched-rubber-band feeling that may plague CVTs. EPA gasoline scores haven’t been introduced, however on my heavy-footed, winding-road check drive, I averaged 23.eight miles per gallon.

The engine has the makings of a severely fun-to-drive crossover, however the Eclipse Cross’ suspension and steering are an enormous letdown. There may be sufficient physique roll on this factor to make even the steeliest of stomachs go flippity-flop whereas driving proper seat. Mixed with obscure steering and minimal suggestions, the potential for a handy guide a rough drive goes proper out the window. It is a pity, because the sturdy engine and transmission might put the Eclipse Cross in Mazda CX-5 territory by way of driving enjoyment.

The Eclipse Cross will get all of the superior driver’s aids, however not on each trim. Blind-spot warning and rear cross-traffic alert are commonplace on SE and above, however you need to transfer as much as the highest SEL trim and shell out for the Touring package deal to get ahead collision warning, adaptive cruise management and lane-departure warning. Toyota makes ahead collision warning commonplace on its RAV4.

In high-speed and heavy visitors on Pacific Coast Freeway, the adaptive cruise management introduced the Eclipse Cross to a easy cease behind the lead automobile, and a easy faucet on the gasoline received it going once more. Lane-departure warning is simply that: a warning. If I wandered exterior the lane, there was no steering enter to information me again. 

A heads-up show is commonplace on the SEL, but it surely’s not projected instantly onto the windshield. As a substitute a big, clear display pops up with details about velocity, cruise management setting and any security warnings mirrored as much as it.  I did not discover the massive display distracting when simply toddling alongside in visitors, however as quickly as I hit the again roads, that pet went again in its hiding place.

A 7-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is commonplace on the LE and up, as such there isn’t any native navigation system. There’s a little bit of a delay when choosing menu buttons from the touchscreen, however the system  can be managed by a touchpad within the middle console, which is far faster. The system makes you navigate fairly a couple of menus and submenus, but it surely’s all pretty intuitive.

2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

A seven-inch touchscreen is commonplace on LE trims and above and contains Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.


Mitsubishi

There are a couple of quirks to the switchgear, nevertheless. There isn’t a bodily quantity knob, simply up/down buttons on the passenger aspect of the touchscreen and on the steering wheel for the motive force. The HVAC temperature controls are simply up/down buttons, not dials. Moreover there are a number of clean buttons all through the cabin. Mitsubishi says these are for options obtainable solely in Europe, however on a high of the road automobile just like the one I used to be driving, it appears a bit low cost.

By way of appears, nicely, that is at all times subjective. These of us automotive journalists on the press drive had some heated dialogue concerning the split-window rear. Some thought it seemed like a Toyota Prius and a Pontiac Aztek had a child; others like myself thought it a advantageous selection. Out entrance you possibly can see the inspiration of the Eclipse coupe, if not within the precise components then by way of design proportions. The aspect character line incorporates the door handles, which is a pleasant contact. Some will hate the appears of the Eclipse Cross, however I’ve to offer Mitsubishi props for coming to market with a dangerous design.

The 2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross begins at $23,295, not together with vacation spot, however my loaded-up SEL with Touring package deal bumps the value to $30,395. SE and SEL trims embody a two-year trial subscription to Mitsubishi Join. This contains an OnStar-like security program in addition to an app with distant providers. You can even entry automobile distant options by an Amazon Echo or Google House system. After two years costs are $99 per yr for safeguard providers or $228 for each the safeguard and distant providers.

The Eclipse Cross will likely be in sellers in March of 2018.

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