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Many of its competitors are creating more aggressive styles for their SUVs, but Mitsubishi is foregoing that approach, as you can see with the 2022 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross. The Eclipse Cross still manages to be eye-catching without all the aggressive lines and assertive headlights.
If only that approach carried over to the vehicle's performance which, by all means, is underwhelming at best. The standard 1.5-L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine gets paired up with a continuously variable automatic transmission (or CVT for short), and that CVT does deliver some smooth power. Too bad the 152 horsepower only delivers a mediocre performance. Sure, its acceleration is far from being the worst in its segment, but getting from 0 to 60 mph in 8.6 seconds is a bit sluggish for this class.
The Eclipse Cross does, however, deliver on ride quality. The chassis is built to handle bumps and keeps the cabin calm and relaxed while cruising. We just wish the interior décor was on-par with direct competitors like the Toyota Rav4 and the Mazda CX-5. But more on those vehicles later.
First, let's talk about what is new for the 2022 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross, what we like about it, and what we would like to see changed in the near future.
What's New for 2022?
Mitsubishi skipped the 2021 model year for the Eclipse Cross in order to focus on its overhaul. It made some tweaks to the front and rear fascia in order for them to look more contemporary. However, the automaker did not go all-out on making the Eclipse Cross look super sporty like its chief rivals. Instead, Mitsubishi took a more laid-back approach while still making this SUV look beautiful with its lines and large front grille. The revised liftgate eliminates the former split-window design on the rear, and this is indeed a welcome change. Inside, you will see upgrades like an 8.0-inch infotainment screen that has been placed closer to the driver. Gone is the old obnoxious touchpad controller, now replaced by physical control knobs. You can also opt for a new upholstery done in gray leather this year.
Top 10 Reasons to Buy a 2022 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross – The Pros
1. A Quiet Cruise Along the Highway
The 2022 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross has a remarkably quiet cabin. As you should expect from a crossover SUV like this, the cabin is tranquil even at highway speeds. You will not hear any whining coming from the engine, and wind and road noise do not make their way inside. Overall, the cabin remains as pleasantly quiet as possible, so you will not have to worry about cranking the volume on your sound system just to hear it.
2. An Abundance of Cargo Space
The Eclipse Cross comes with enough cargo space to suit a small family's on-the-go lifestyle. You can fit a stroller in the rear without having to fold any seats down, and if you need to haul luggage, you can fit quite a few pieces in the back. Six carry-ons will easily fit behind the rear seats, and if you fold the seats down, you can fit about 17.
3. Generous Warranty Coverage
Mitsubishi offers an above-average warranty coverage on the Eclipse Cross. Mitsubishi delivers the same 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty flaunted by Hyundai and Kia, but they also add better roadside assistance and corrosion protection. Their limited warranty covers up to five years or 60,000 miles, whichever comes first. For the price you pay for the vehicle itself, the warranty coverage sweetens the deal.
4. A Comfort-tuned Suspension
The Eclipse Cross's suspension is definitely tuned for comfort. The front struts and rear multi-link system helps keep things cozy inside of the cabin as it will dispatch a lot of road imperfections. You can even take corners at higher rates of speed with only a moderate amount of body roll, something which can be higher in other crossover SUVs.
5. A Well-crafted Interior
Mitsubishi has given the Eclipse Cross a more refined interior this model year. For its modest price tag, the Eclipse Cross offers higher quality than expected. You won't see a bunch of cheap hard plastics or tacky cloth upholstery that looks prone to fraying. Everything looks expensive enough and more expensive than what you find in other affordably-priced vehicles.
6. Rear Seats Fold Easily
Need to fold the rear seats down in order to max out that cargo space? No worries! You can easily fold them down without a hassle. There are release levers in the cargo area that will let the seats down, and they will fold pretty flatly, which helps when you need to slide bulky items through.
7. Plenty of Infotainment Features For the Price
Again, for the price, you get a lot from the Eclipse Cross. And that holds true with its list of infotainment features. New for this model year is an 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system that comes standard on the LE, SE, and SEL trims. (The base ES trim level still equips a 7-inch display.) You get standard smartphone app integration via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, as well as in-dash integrated navigation on the 8-inch system.
8. Numerous Driver Aids
A lot of basic driver aids come equipped on the Eclipse Cross. You get everything from forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking to lane departure warning. If you upgrade to one of the higher trim levels, you can get some of the more advanced driver aids, such as adaptive cruise control.
9. A CVT That Delivers Smooth Power
The CVT that comes equipped on the Eclipse Cross does a good job of delivering smooth amounts of power. The benefit of equipping a CVT is that they tend to give slightly better returns on fuel, but some of them do not deliver power that well. This vehicle's CVT manages to work well with the standard engine at sending power to the front wheels.
10. The SE Trim Level
Looking for the most bang for your buck? The SE trim level is just two levels up from the base trim, and it gives you a ton of upgrades for the modest price jump. The 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system with built-in navigation is definitely worth the upgrade. While the LE does a decent job of giving you upgrades, the SE goes beyond that by giving you more driver aids (like adaptive cruise control), keyless ignition and entry, and a dual-zone automatic climate control system. You can also opt for all-wheel drive on the SE, whereas you cannot on the ES or LE.
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Reasons Not to Buy a 2022 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross – The Cons
1. Bland Acceleration
The biggest pitfall to the 2022 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross is its lackluster engine. This 4-cylinder puts in a drowsy performance, getting up to 60 mph in about 8.6 seconds. Quite a few of its rivals are able to best that time with a zippier drive. The engine is meant to be practical, but a little bit of enthrallment would be nice.
2. Less Than Impressive Fuel Economy
Doubling down on the poor acceleration is the engine's less-than-stellar fuel numbers. It gets an EPA estimate of 27 mpg combined on the front-wheel drive ES trim level. An AWD-equipped SEL trim can get somewhere around 26 mpg combined in real-world tests. If you have a lead foot, you will probably see the numbers drop a bit since this engine seems to be sensitive to driving habits.
3. A Very Basic Base Trim Level
The ES is a base trim and it is a very basic one at that. There is nothing terribly exciting about its standard 7-inch infotainment display, its barebones list of driver aids, or its minimal approach to giving you creature comforts. There is no option for AWD, and the few extra grand you pay for the SE gives you so much more.
4. Minimal Small Item Storage Space
Families tend to need a lot of extra cubbyholes and bins for stashing smaller items. You will not find many of them inside of the Eclipse Cross's cabin. The design feels too minimalistic in this regard since most of us need places to hide our tablets and smartphones when we are on the go.
How It Stacks Up to the Competition:
2022 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross vs. 2022 Toyota RAV4
If you are looking for something with more of a physical "wow" factor, then the 2022 Toyota RAV4 might have what you require. The exterior is eye-popping with undulating lines and reeks of athleticism. You also get a great list of body color options. Inside, the cabin is almost always quiet, packed with comfort, and spacious in both the passenger and cargo areas. Not to mention the controls are all easy to use. On the downside, however, the RAV4 is pricier than the Eclipse Cross. It also forces you to deal with a bland base engine and rather vague steering capabilities.
2022 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross vs. 2022 Mazda CX-5
Another top contender is the 2022 Mazda CX-5. Like the RAV4, it is more expensive than the Eclipse Cross. It also has a weak-willed base engine, less rear leg space and cargo volume than other competitors, and an overly-stiff ride quality. On the other hand, the CX-5 offers superior steering and handling capabilities. You also get treated to a gorgeous cabin that remains well muted even on the highway. There is also a turbocharged engine you can opt for that adds quite a boost in power.
The 2022 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross essentially gives you what you pay for. The base trim is a little too basic, so you will have to spend more to get more. With a more powerful turbo engine equipped, this crossover SUV could be a stronger contender than most in its segment. However, that just is not the case. It should have been part of the vehicle's redesign, which got just about everything else right. Here's hoping Mitsubishi will some day add an option for a stronger engine.
• Why buy a 2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross? w/ pros vs cons