Major Flex: Why The SEL Touring is the Mitsubishi Outlander You Must Drive
It’s no secret that we’re fans of the new 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander. We are, after all, a Mitsubishi dealer. We’ve been representing the triple diamond since 1989. We haven’t seen a vehicle this important to the brand in 30 years. Now that we’ve had the Outlander for a few months we can officially say this vehicle is a hit. Every day people are stopping by to check out this new crossover. It’s quite refreshing for a dealership that has sold the vehicles for more than three decades. While all versions of the Outlander have been well received, we felt a little left out of the party. We hadn’t received a range-topping SEL Touring since the vehicle launched back in the spring. I got to view this trim twice before. Once at another dealership in Tennessee, and again at the Cincinnati Auto Show. I had not had an opportunity to spend time with the SEL Touring…until now. I’m here to say that this trim makes a great vehicle even better!
Before we get too far into the review of the SEL Touring, let’s first examine the rest of the Outlander Lineup. First, there is the entry-level ES. This comes standard with 18-inch rims, but can be optioned with the 20 -inch rims. Then you have the Outlander SE. This is going to be your volume leader. It’s by far the trim we’ve sold the most, and it’s very well equipped. After the SE, you can get an SEL. This is considered the top trim. It comes with the Quilted Leather Interior. We’ve had all of those in stock, and they are awesome. However, I was getting antsy. I wanted to test out the SEL Touring. The Touring package is additional equipment for the SEL. It’s not a separate trim, per se, but rather a package for the SEL. It adds a heated steering wheel, the Black/Saddle Two Tone Interior, The Heads-Up Display, the Bose Stereo, the Panoramic Moonroof, and my favorite feature, the integrated rear door pull-up sunshades.
We finally got an SEL Touring last week. I was so excited to drive it. But, shortly after it went through inspection, it sold. I was bummed. The customer who bought it was also eagerly awaiting the arrival of the SEL Touring. Luckily the stork brought us another SEL Touring a few days later. It was dropped off on a Friday, so it wouldn’t hit the lot until Monday. I jumped at the opportunity to spend some time in this vehicle. So, I came in on my day off and examined this vehicle thoroughly.
The SEL Touring I had the pleasure of testing is Cosmic Blue. I must say that it looks stunning with the 20 Inch rims and the Black/Saddle interior. To say this vehicle is punching above its weight is an understatement. I immediately wanted to flex with it at my nearest Red Lobster. However, I couldn’t find “Cheddar Bay” on the included Apple CarPlay, so I stayed near the dealership. This vehicle looks good, but what is beneath the surface? What truly sets this vehicle apart?
When I climbed inside, I immediately turned on the heated steering wheel. After all, it was a 95-degree August afternoon, and I didn’t want to catch a chill. The steering wheel as a whole feels more significant on this new Outlander and adding heat to it makes it magical. You can tell someone spent some time on this design. It’s a substantial improvement over the previous generation.
After I played with the steering wheel, I was curious to test out the heads-up display. I noticed this was different than the heads-up display offered in the Eclipse Cross. No offense to the Eclipse Cross, but I do not care for that setup. As a tall person, I can’t find a comfortable position with that display. I am relieved to say that this is not the case with the new Outlander. It offers a more traditional heads-up display. It projects onto the windshield, unlike the Eclipse Cross’ plastic pop-up display. This is a major win for the Outlander.
After playing with the heads-up display I tested out the Bose Stereo System. While this is not exclusive to the package, it’s still an impressive feature that I have not talked about much. It’s tastefully finished in this vehicle. While upgraded stereos have been a big part of Mitsubishi for a while, this is the first time I’ve seen one so well done. In the past, the upgraded stereo meant you lost some Cargo space behind the third row due to the subwoofer. That’s not the case with Bose. Upgrading to this stereo means you get 10 speakers and a digital subwoofer. Regardless if you’re listening to Bach or Billy Ray, this sound system kicks.
Before I left for the day I had to go into the back seat and test out those integrated window shades. They are by far my favorite feature in this trim. I climbed in the middle row, reclined the seat, and pulled the shade up. This must be how Chloe Kardashian feels when she rides in the back of an Outlander. While I know this feature is made with children in mind, as an adult, I found it to be very useful. It’s so much better than those aftermarket sunshades so many parents buy for their kids. With just a lift of the handle, this can be stowed away. No dealing with suction cups, not nasty prints on the window.
Overall, the SEL Touring lived up to the hype. I’m so glad I was able to spend some time with this vehicle. Though I work for a Mitsubishi Dealership, I’ve been a fan of the brand since I was an eighteen-year-old watching Paul Walker drive his Eclipse through the parking lot of Dodger Stadium in The Fast and The Furious. (Back when the movies were about cars and not family.) While the sport compact scene isn’t one Mitsubishi is currently involved in, I still want the brand to succeed. The latest numbers are out for the Outlander, and I feel like this vehicle is going to propel the brand to the next level. This comeback story is just getting started.