Eclipse Cross ticks quite a few SUV boxes

Sunday Star-Times - - Drivetimes - DAVID LIN­KLATER

Mit­subishi New Zealand will add an­other main­stream SUV to its ranks in De­cem­ber with the new Eclipse Cross, which sits in be­tween the ASX and Out­lander.

Didn’t think there was a gap there? Think again, says Mit­subishi, which reck­ons its new­comer is ide­ally placed by hav­ing a foot in the two most im­por­tant SUV seg­ments on the mar­ket: small and medium. It’ll be priced from $41,690-$45,590 for the 2WD ver­sions that will ar­rive first. Mod­els with S-AWC all-wheel drive will fol­low in April 2018.

Eclipse Cross is in­tended to be a bit more as­pi­ra­tional than ASX or Out­lander. It’s styled around the coupe-look that’s be­come such a thing in the pre­mium-SUV seg­ment and puts the em­pha­sis on de­sign and tech­nol­ogy. The sole en­gine is a new 1.5-litre di­rect­in­jec­tion turbo unit, matched to a con­tin­u­ously vari­able trans­mis­sion with eight-step mode.

De­spite the low roofline, the Eclipse has some prac­ti­cal fea­tures. The rear seats are raised ‘‘the­atre style’’ and can slide and re­cline – the lat­ter in eight steps from 16-32 de­grees. This gives boot space of be­tween 341-448 litres, de­pend­ing on how the rear seat is con­fig­ured.

The in­te­rior ar­chi­tec­ture is be­spoke: it’s dif­fer­ent from ASX or Out­lander. A key fea­ture is a new touch­pad, which can be used to con­trol Ap­ple CarPlay (a world­first, says Mit­subishi) with a va­ri­ety of one and two-fin­ger swipes, sim­i­lar to a lap­top.

DAVID LIN­KLATER

Eclipse Cross SUV is de­sign-led, with new tech on board.

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