Mitsubishi Motors Corp. is aiming to make its redesigned Outlander mid-sized crossover as the brand's top-selling vehicle. Mitsubishi is expecting to sell around 33,000 units annually of the next-generation Outlander when it rolls out the vehicle next year in North America. So far, the Japanese carmaker only managed to sell 5,909 Outlanders in the first nine months of 2012. Mitsubishi’s expectations for the Outlander are considered ambitious, as the numbers do not include a plug-in hybrid version that will also be marketed in the United States. Mitsubishi sold 99,531 vehicles in Canada and the US in 2011. That year, leading the sales charge for the carmaker was the Mitsubishi Lancer, which accounted for 19,874 units out of total Mitsubishi sales in the US of 79,020 units.
For the first nine months of 2012, the carmaker’s top-selling vehicle was the Outlander Sport small crossover, with 13,126 units sold in the US. Mitsubishi expects the redesigned Outlander -- which boasts of a rounder, more streamlined styling -- to sell more, thanks to its better fuel-economy figures. On Oct. 25, 2012, Mitsubishi rolled out the Outlander in Japan, where the mid-sized crossover is expected to return up to 22 percent better fuel economy than its predecessor.
Under Japan's testing standards, the new Outlander returns 34 mpg, compared with 28 mpg for the previous model. However, the numbers are not comparable to U.S. test results, and the Outlander has yet to receive an EPA rating. Mitsubishi managed to improve the vehicle’s fuel economy by partly reducing Outlander’s overall weight by 220 pounds and by improving its aerodynamics.