2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Tourer v 2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Hybrid comparison

Two popular seven-seat SUVs – one mid-size, one large – according to official classification, but which is the right fit for your family?

This is a comparison with a difference. 

Strictly speaking, the Toyota Kluger and Mitsubishi Outlander are not competitors. Ask Toyota and they’ll tell you the Kluger is a large family SUV. Mitsubishi will tell you the Outlander is a mid-size family SUV. 

So if we were to follow Marquess of Queensbury rules, this is not a fair fight. This is like putting Tyson up against Tszyu, a heavyweight against a welterweight. But we’re going to anyway, and here’s why.

Both of these vehicles are SUVs, and both of these vehicles have seats for seven humans, which makes them ideal candidates for families. Both of these machines are also at the top of their game right now. This is the first all-new Outlander in a decade, and the Toyota Kluger is our reigning Drive Car of the Year Best Large SUV. 

Now, there is a big difference in pricing ($75K versus $51K) and the Kluger is a fair bit larger (4.96m versus 4.71m in overall length), but this is not a head-to-head comparison. 

Instead, it’s a look at the practical and performance differences if you step up (or down) a size category. 

We’ve deliberately chosen our most recent reviews of these two vehicles, which are of variants at the top of their respective model ranges. This gives us a picture of how these cars stack up ‘with all the fruit’. 

If you’re wondering why we didn’t go for the Outlander Exceed PHEV, which is: a) the most expensive Outlander, and b) a petrol-electric hybrid like the Kluger (albeit with plug-in capability), it’s because the current Outlander PHEV has less equipment than the Exceed Tourer, and we wanted one with all the fruit.

It’s also because the new-generation Outlander PHEV has not landed yet. But, to keep things as equitable as possible, we will ignore the Kluger’s hybrid attributes when we go in-depth in the conclusion.

So, that’s why we’re doing it. Now let’s take a closer look at these two worthy family SUV candidates and see how they stack up.

Having a pre-teen daughter is a great way of staying in touch with modern trends, music and, most importantly, language. In the past few months, I have grown beyond fleek and embraced yeet. I know what is extra, who an eshay is, and crucially, I know when to call out a positively lit glow-up.

I refer, of course, to the 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Tourer, the range-topping variant of the triple-diamond’s completely overhauled family hauler. It’s the first all-new Outlander in a decade and, I’ll give you the hot tea, compared to the old car this one is turnt.

And with that, I’ll return to a regular mid-40s vernacular.

Priced from $50,990 before options and on-road costs, the Exceed Tourer is probably not where most buyers will arrive in the range (looking at you $41,490 Aspire FWD – read the latest price details of the Outlander range here), but it’s a great showcase of everything that Mitsubishi has thrown at the new Outlander to make the seven-seater live its best life.

High-mount LED running lamps and a stacked-trio of LED main and high beams are wrapped in a bulbous nose by Mitsubishi’s signature ‘Dynamic Shield’ chrome trim.

The side profile manages to make the 20-inch wheels look perfectly scaled, with clever use of black trim under the flattened arches. Not something every car can pull off.

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The Exceed Tourer includes a contrasting coloured roof that works well in White Diamond metallic with black, but perhaps less so in Black Diamond with Bronze. These are your only two choices on the Tourer, whereas the ‘regular’ Exceed can be had in seven single-tone colours (black, blue, grey, red, silver, pearl white and flat white).

But like we said, while this may be a range-topper, it won’t be the volume car.

As Toyota continues to roll out its well-regarded closed-loop petrol hybrid technology into more and more models, we’ve got the big-daddy of the bunch. It’s a 2022 Toyota Kluger with the fuel-saving hybrid powertrain in range-topping Grande specification.

No stones unturned, then, for this flagship of the range.

Perhaps the strongest competition comes from Kia’s Sorento, whose top-spec GT-Line can be had as either a frugal 2.2-litre diesel ($65,070), closed-loop hybrid ($66,750) or plug-in hybrid ($80,330) all before on-road costs, the last of which gets 57km of electric-only range and is, for now, unique in its segment.

While the Sorento has no doubt taken big strides forward with its current-generation model, the Kluger strikes out from an enviable position of segment authority. Alongside the extremely popular LandCruiser Prado, the Kluger has been dominating sales figures in the large SUV segment for many years.

And in true Toyota fashion, the recipe hasn’t really changed much in comparison to the previous generation. Sure, there’s a new look inside and out, more tech, a fresh platform, and upgraded safety credentials. However, it’s got an acute sense of familiarity and connection to the previous generation.

The real ace up the sleeve for the Kluger is the ‘Hybrid Synergy Drive’ powertrain, which Toyota (and Lexus) has applied to a majority of its range. It’s a hybrid electric vehicle, but one that doesn’t need plugging in at any time.

Instead of the 3.5-litre petrol V6 found elsewhere in the range, the Kluger Hybrid is powered by a four-cylinder engine. It’s a 2.5-litre unit, which runs on the frugal Atkinson Cycle and makes 142kW @ 6000rpm and 242Nm @ 4400rpm on its own, though that’s not the whole story.

The petrol engine runs through a continuously variable automatic transmission, which is also tasked with blending the outputs of the 134kW/270Nm electric motors up front. There is a smaller 40kW/121Nm motor powering the rear axle, though without any mechanical connection to the front wheels.

The petrol engine only powers the front wheels, but the rear electric motor gives the all-wheel-drive ability. Toyota doesn’t quote a peak combined torque output with this set-up, but peak power is set at 184kW, 34 kilowatts less than the V6.

A 6.5Ah nickel metal hydride (Ni-MH) battery is charged up during driving, coasting and braking. It’s not there for a pure-electric driving range, though it can manage short bursts of low-speed and coasting without help from the petrol engine. It harvests back otherwise lost energy and uses it to supplement the petrol engine and reduce fuel consumption.

Grande is a big jump in asking price over the mis-spec GXL, but there is some unique gear that helps to set this specification apart: projector LED headlights, powered rear tailgate, heated and ventilated front seats, a premium interior treatment, electrochromatic rear-view mirror, head-up display, 360-degree camera and 11-speaker JBL sound system.

Key details 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Tourer 2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Hybrid
Price (MSRP) $50,990 plus on-road costs $75,700 plus on-road costs
Colour of test car White Diamond with Black Mica roof Saturn Blue
Options None Premium beige interior – no cost
Metallic paint – $675
Rear seat entertainment pack – $1500
Price as tested $50,990 plus on-road costs $76,375 plus on-road costs
Drive-away price $54,990 (National offer) $82,323 drive-away (Sydney)

Like the contrast roof on the outside, the Tourer is the only variant in the Outlander line-up to feature the two-tone ‘saddle tan’ (orange) interior option. Like the roof, it looks great, but is probably not worth the extra $2200 (Exceed at $48,490, Exceed Tourer at $50,990 both before on-road costs).

You get massage seats, too, which are nice, but also fall into the ‘not worth $2K’ bucket.

This aside, it’s a really well-presented interior, even with orange bits. The materials are high-quality and the finish is top-notch. I was a particular fan of the padded trim pieces on the top of the doors.

Ergonomics are good and basic functions like climate control are easy to use, plus this even has a shortcut to rear temperature controls on the main interface, which if you’ve dealt with a number of ‘I’m cold’ and ‘I’m hot’ complaints within a short period of time is a very handy inclusion.

The quilted-pattern seats are lovely and both supportive and comfortable. They are heated (from Aspire upward) and powered and have multiple memory settings (on Exceed upward).

One of the Outlander’s strong marketing points, the seven-seat layout available across the range (optional on ES, standard on LS and above), is also the reason behind one of its key compromises, second-row space.

It’s comfortable back there, and the reclining backrests are good, but legroom isn’t brilliant for adults or taller teens. Plus, the central armrest is actually the middle seatback, which to be level and comfortable requires the headrest to be extended.

To need this amount of deployment finesse in a car where children are going to put poorly sealed drinks in a (likely) angled cupholder isn’t great.

And the third row? Yeah, kids-only back there and only for short trips, plus there’s very limited cargo room (163L) when all seven pews are in place. They are ‘sometimes’ seats, after all. Something that you are reminded of each time you need to unfold and then assemble the head restraints for use.

The flip-fold access through the back doors is good, though.

When using the Outlander as a five-seater, the 478L boot is generous and expands to 1461L with all rows folded flat. It’s like this that it works best, so treat the third row as a bonus rather than a function and you’ll be fine.

If the Kluger were a cricketer, it would be Rahul ‘The Wall’ Dravid. It gets the job done with impressive skill, even when under pressure. But it perhaps doesn’t do it with the same kind of theatre as other options out there, like the VVS Laxmans of the world.

That safe, solid and conservative demeanour is perhaps most seen on the inside. There are lots of cues and design elements lifted directly from the previous-generation model. The handy storage shelf that runs along the dashboard and the sliding centre console lid being two. There are three USB-A power outlets up front and two in the rear, along with two front 12V points, but no wireless charging pad.

This Grande specification adds a fair chunk of trinkets atop of the GXL, with smaller details like ambient interior lighting and metal scuff plates joining heating, venting and memory for the electric ‘premium’ seats which replace the GXL’s faux-leather trim with quilted and perforated partial leather trim.

The rear-seat entertainment screen fitted to the vehicle shown is optional, which in turn reduces the size of the standard moonroof to just a sunroof over the front seats.

Although the Kluger is an all-new model, it feels old hat in a few respects. Against the likes of a Kia Sorento or Hyundai Santa Fe, Toyota has stuck with a conservative and traditional look and feel for the Kluger. Some might think it’s not special enough for a new car worth more than seventy thousand dollars.

Where the wow factor might come in, then, is through straight practicality and space. The Kluger trades well in storage space with the big centre console, dashboard shelf, and door bins able to absorb large volumes of your daily carry.

You get a sense of the Kluger’s size when you slide into the second row. This is a big vehicle, after all. And even with a big human in the driver’s seat, there is enough room behind for a carbon copy in the back. There are climate-controlled air vents in the roof and power outlets near the floor, and the 60/40 seats slide and tilt in all directions.

The third row isn’t bad, either. It’s not the biggest in the segment, however. Those who want the biggest third row should look at a Hyundai Palisade, or swallow their misplaced price and buy a Kia Carnival people mover. But for a third row that is going to see more than occasional use by kids, teenagers and adults alike, the Kluger has the right amount of space available for the job. There are air vents and cupholders in the cheap seats as well, which will keep occupants happy.

In seven-seat mode, the leftover boot in the Kluger isn’t huge. Its 241L would be enough for a grocery run, and you could probably load a half-dozen backpacks in there. But as a five-seater, 552L is available and would take a significant amount of gear to fill up.

2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Tourer 2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Hybrid
Seats Seven Seven
Boot volume 163L to third row
478L to second row
1461L to first row
241L to third row
552L to second row
1150L to first row
Length 4710mm 4966mm
Width 1862mm 1930mm
Height 1745mm 1755mm
Wheelbase 2706mm 2850mm

Infotainment and Connectivity

Being a modern platform, the Outlander offers plenty of new-generation goodies like USB-A and USB-C ports, a wireless charge pad and a 360-degree parking camera.

The 9.0-inch touchscreen media system supports wireless Apple CarPlay, wired Android Auto, includes satellite navigation and DAB digital radio. It’s fine, and does all you need, but feels a bit ‘meh’ in contrast with the other elements of the interior. The interface isn’t all that slick, the display is not super sharp, the maps not particularly detailed.

It’s a weird gripe, sure, but with obvious attention and care taken to other touchpoints and switchgear around the cabin, the generic ‘off the Mitsubishi shelf’ media system feels a bit ordinary.

The 10-speaker Bose Premium sound system is good, though.

If the media system is boring, however, then the 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster is anything but. All the key information is presented in rich colour, but you can change the display to show as wacky rolling drum speedo and tacho tumblers that look like 1990s fantasy-adventure CGI elements. It’s just a bit… Strange. I’m not a huge fan.

The menu structure is a bit convoluted, too, which is not something that impacts day-to-day driving, but is just something else that feels a bit less premium than other parts of the car.

One other strange thing is that the touch-unlock button on the door doesn’t immediately inform the alarm system status. On a number of occasions, we managed to have the siren scream away when opening the door.

This didn’t happen using remote unlock from the keyfob, nor if you let the car think about being unlocked for a second or two before pulling the handle.

In a world where screens are getting bigger and things like buttons are disappearing, the Kluger’s infotainment display appears a little old hat. It measures in at only 8.0 inches, which is shared across the range and feels small at this price point especially when top trims in overseas markets have access to a 12.3-inch display.

It’s also surrounded by buttons and dials that might seem old-fashioned, but make operation and navigation through the operating system dead easy.

Along with wired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, the Kluger Grande picks up digital radio, native navigation, and an 11-speaker JBL sound system, the last of which is unique to the Grande.

In front of the driver, there is a 7.0-inch multifunction display that is a little bigger than the typical portrait-style screen for your trip computer readouts. It also goes into more detail around the hybrid powertrain – always interesting to keep an eye on – along with some of the more advanced driving aids.

Those who want more digital acreage and pixel power won’t need to look far to find it. Kia’s Sorento jumps to mind with its larger 10.25-inch infotainment display and 12.3-inch instrument cluster.

However, the Kluger’s more humble set-up works well. It’s easy to navigate and operate, and feels fit for purpose. However, it’s one element that leaves the GXL and GX feeling like smarter buying.

As you would expect, there is a host of driver assistance and safety equipment on board, with systems like adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring and lane-keep assist standard across the range.

Our Exceed Tourer also includes rear cross-traffic alert and braking (on LS grade up), and a 360-degree camera and head-up display (Aspire grade up) to provide a comprehensive and premium selection of technology.

It all works well, too, with the lane-departure system quite passive in its operation, which we tend to prefer. The information in the head-up display is clear and useful too.

Going up against the stringent 2021 ANCAP crash-testing regime, the Toyota Kluger managed to score five stars. This included relatively high scores of 90 per cent and 88 per cent for adult and child occupant protection respectively.

Safety equipment that is standard across the board includes autonomous emergency braking (with pedestrian and cyclist detection), blind-spot monitoring, front and rear parking sensors, lane-departure alert, automatic high beam, adaptive cruise control and speed sign recognition.

Equipment that only the Grande gets is a head-up display, more powerful projector LED headlamps, a 360-degree camera system, and auto-dimming rear view mirror.

At a glance 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Tourer 2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Hybrid
ANCAP rating & year tested Five stars (tested 2022) Five stars (tested 2021)
Safety report ANCAP report ANCAP report

This has always been a strong point of Mitsubishi vehicles, and the new Outlander is no exception. As noted, the Tourer isn’t the postcard for value in the range, but the Aspire at $41,490 for front-wheel drive, or $43,999 as an all-wheel drive (both before on-road costs), is the real sweet spot.

Keep an eye on Mitsubishi’s offers page, too, as drive-away deals are usually easy to spot, and right now the Outlander range has reasonable no-surprises drive-away deals, like this Exceed Tourer at $54,990 drive-away.

Mitsubishi offers a 10-year warranty if you maintain the dealer service schedule, which of its own is also a reasonably strong value proposition. Service outside of the dealer network (or for some fleet customers) and the warranty reverts to five years or 100,000km.

You get 10 years of transparent costs here, too, with the first three coming in at $597 and five at $995 (just $199 per year). Years six and eight will run $499 and the tenth service is a major at $799, but given your car is warranted the entire time, this feels like excellent value.

Those wanting to buy a Toyota Kluger likely want the hybrid variant, which costs just under $3000 more than a V6 all-wheel-drive Grande. It makes sense considering the fuel savings that one will make over the life of the vehicle. However, we’d prefer to look at the GXL or GX specification grades for the best value for money.

The Grande feels a little expensive in comparison to high-spec, all-wheel-drive variants of other large SUVs. Examples from Kia, Hyundai and Mazda all cannot match the high asking price of the Kluger Grande.

Sure, some might really want niceties like heated and vented seats; however, the step up to the Grande is a big one. If it were my money, I’d be zooming in on the GXL Hybrid.

Even GX grade, which has cloth seats with manual adjustment and a more basic overall trim, is a comfortable and practical vehicle well-suited to the daily grind.

Servicing is set at only $250 per year for the first five years, which is quite cheap for a vehicle of this size. Once you get on the other side of this, however, prices increase quite a bit. But if you combine that with the cheap running costs, the Kluger Hybrid stacks up well over the life of your planned ownership.

The requirement of premium fuel – something not shared with the non-hybrid 3.5-litre V6 engine – would make each tank of fuel cost a little more. However, the fact you’re visiting the bowser less often with the hybrid powertrain is a welcome one.

Toyota’s official claim for the Kluger hybrid is 5.6 litres per 100 kilometres. In testing we settled at 6.6L/100km, which for a car of its size, is still very impressive.

At a glance 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Tourer 2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Hybrid
Warranty Five years, 100,000km
(up to 10 years, 200,000km conditional)
Five years / unlimited km
Service intervals 12 months or 15,000km 12 months or 15,000km
Servicing costs $597 (3 years), $995 (5 years) $750 (3 years), $1250 (5 years)
Fuel cons. (claimed) 8.1L/100km 5.6L/100km
Fuel cons. (on test) 10.2L/100km 6.6L/100km
Fuel type 91 octane regular unleaded 95 octane premium unleaded
Fuel tank size 55L 65L

Not everything is brand-new in the 2022 Outlander. Under the bonnet is a 2.5-litre petrol engine sourced from the 2019 Nissan Altima. The direct-injection PR25DD offers 135kW and 245Nm with a claimed combined-cycle fuel consumption of 8.1L/100km.

It’s not a bad lump by any stretch, but just feels a bit lacking in low-down torque (the peak isn’t until a buzzy 3600rpm), and tends to be thirstier than you’d like as there are no forced-induction efficiency multipliers at play.

Not all engines can be standouts, though, and this, while fundamentally good, is just a four-cylinder petrol. You’ll find the same unit under the bonnet of the upcoming Nissan X-Trail too.

Over our week with the car, the average consumption was 10.2L/100km. It’s not crazy and is actually lower than the claimed urban cycle of 10.5L/100km, but when the RAV4 Hybrid can dish out reliable five-point-something averages (4.8L/100km claim) and the Kia Sportage diesel low sixes (6.3L/100km claim), the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi-Alliance powerplant isn’t all that frugal.

Thirst aside, the 2.5-litre engine cruises well, and despite not having as much vigour off the line as you’d always want, it has enough punch to manage B-road overtakes and general in-gear acceleration.

In-gear is probably apt, too, as the Outlander features a CVT (constantly variable transmission) with eight preset ratios and on-demand all-wheel drive. Drive is predominantly through the front wheels, though, and as such you barely notice the rears forcibly turning, even when the S-AWC (Super All Wheel Control) notification advises you that things are happening.

Ride quality is good, too, and the Outlander compresses and rebounds well enough over speed humps, but the comparative size of the 20-inch wheels on the 2706mm wheelbase has it often feeling fussy over choppy on uneven surfaces.

This is only really apparent when touring, and again it points to where the quality and tactile feel of the Outlander has you wanting, or even expecting, the same level of premium-ness in other areas.

I am being quite picky here, though, as generally the Exceed Tourer is a very pleasant place to spend time, and as a family shopper it works very well around town.

Initially I noticed that the Kluger didn’t seem to have as much engine-off time as you’d have in a hybrid RAV4 or Corolla. Our test car had 15,000km on it, and it looked to have had quite a hard life before it arrived at Drive.

The 2.5-litre, four-cylinder engine seems to be doing a lot of work from the driver’s seat, sometimes working hard to get the Kluger accelerating. I started thinking that maybe this bigger Kluger wouldn’t get the same economy benefits as smaller hybrid Toyotas, which have always been impressive. However, I was wrong.

Be like the squirrel, it seems. This hybrid powertrain is able to – piece by piece – save portions of fuel during normal driving. They’re only small savings, but they combine into an impressive overall number.

Against a claim of 5.6 litres per hundred kilometres on the combined cycle, we saw 6.6L/100km during our time with the car. The worst I saw was 6.8L/100km. And while it’s higher than the claim, it is still impressive fuel economy from this hybrid vehicle. This is a saving of approximately 4L/100km in comparison to the 3.5-litre petrol V6 claimed consumption, and no doubt more still in real-world conditions.

This big gain in efficiency does come with a loss of performance, with the hybrid Kluger not seeming to carry the same outright punch as the V6. The engine sometimes flares and drones as it groans against the heft of a Kluger Grande. However, outright performance is good enough for daily usability. This compares favourably against the Sorento diesel, which uses between 7.0–8.5L/100km.

In terms of ride quality, there is a slight bit of crashiness present in the Kluger, which is most noticeable around town on rougher surfaces at times. Driving at higher speeds is better, but the lower-speed stuff felt like body control was a little lacking. The comfort is overall quite good, with a soft and cushy nature that befits the application.

Driving around town between 40–60km/h, there are extended periods of engine-off driving. The devil is in the detail, however, with the electric motors still doing plenty of heavy lifting behind the scenes when the engine is running. Then, as you’re onto the brakes and easing off the throttle, the motors switch off quickly.

The important thing is that it’s all quite seamless and barely noticeable from the driver’s seat.

Its steering is light and easy, and the turning circle – 11.4m – is average for this size of SUV. And while visibility is overall decent for tight manoeuvres, the 360-degree camera system in this Grande is a welcome addition.

For those who want to spend a lot of time behind the wheel – with their family no doubt – the ease of operation would be appreciated.

Key details 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Tourer 2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Hybrid
Engine 2.5-litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder petrol 2.5-litre four-cylinder hybrid
Power 135kW @ 6000rpm 142kW @ 6000rpm petrol
134kW front electric
40kW rear electric
184kW combined
Torque 245Nm @ 3600rpm 242Nm @ 4400rpm petrol
270Nm front electric
121Nm rear electric
Drive type All-wheel drive All-wheel drive
Transmission CVT automatic CVT automatic
Power to weight ratio 77kW/t 88kW/t
Weight 1760kg 2090kg
Tow rating 1600kg braked, 750kg unbraked 2000kg braked, 700kg unbraked
Turning circle 10.6m 11.4m

Let’s start with the tape measure. The Kluger large SUV’s 25cm longer and 7cm wider body does equate to more space inside for humans, which is particularly noticeable in the second and third rows. The mid-size SUV Outlander’s second row isn’t exactly generous for legroom, as we pointed out above, and the third row is really a kids-only domain. 

Interestingly, the Kluger’s boot space with five of the seven seats stowed away is actually less than the Outlander’s. But with two or even three rows occupied the Kluger does have more luggage capacity, and that’s important because these vehicles are about carrying people and luggage. 

As for mechanical efficiency and prowess when it comes to moving their bodies and your brood, the bigger and heavier Kluger’s hybrid powertrain definitely has the advantage. But… for argument’s sake, let’s compare a non-hybrid Kluger drivetrain with the non-hybrid Outlander first, because that’s as close to apples with apples as we can get here.

The sans-hybrid Kluger Grande AWD is $2630 cheaper at $73,070. It is powered by a 3.5-litre V6 petrol engine producing 218kW and 350Nm which it sends to all four wheels through an eight-speed automatic. Toyota says this variant weighs 2045kg and accelerates from 0-100km/h in 7.8 seconds. The corporate fuel consumption claim is 8.9L/100km on a city/hwy combined cycle. 

The sans-hybrid Outlander has a smaller 2.5-litre petrol engine which produces just 135kW of power and 245Nm of torque, which it sends to all four wheels via a continuously variable transmission (CVT). It is charged with moving a smaller body weighing 285kg less (1760kg), which helps it keep up with traffic but not with the bigger Kluger. 

Mitsubishi doesn’t publish a 0-100km/h feature, but our research suggests it will be around 10 seconds, which is considerably slower than the more powerful Kluger. Still, smaller body and smaller wheelbase does deliver a smaller turning circle (10.4m compared to 11.6m for the Kluger) which makes it easier to manoeuvre around town and in carparks. 

The Outlander’s official fuel efficiency claim is 8.1L/100km, which is less than the Kluger. We doubt you’ll see better than nines in reality, because the smaller engine does need to work harder than the muscular Kluger to move. 

Before we take a quick look at what features and equipment the larger Kluger has to justify the higher price (apart from bigger body and more performance), a word on warranties. We won’t both comparing warranties and servicing costs, because these two vehicles are here to represent their species, not as a mano a mano winner take all. That’s also why we won’t be evaluating each vehicle’s all-wheel-drive system to discover if the Kluger’s is more capable offroad or not.

Now, features… and remember, these are the best of their respective breeds.

Both have 20-inch alloy wheels and sunroofs. Both have sunshades for second-row windows and electrically opening and closing boots. 

Inside, both have tri-zone climate control, satellite navigation, electrically adjustable and heated front seats, full leather trim and premium sound systems. Both have smartphone integration and digital radio, and both have head-up displays and surround-view cameras.

Both vehicles are five-star cars for safety and have impressive active safety suites which are closely matched. 

So, what does the Kluger have that the Outlander doesn’t? Not much, and not enough to make a significant impact on the price gap. In fact, the Outlander is the only one to offer a useful phone charging mat and it has a bigger infotainment screen plus a larger digital display in the driver’s instrument binnacle.

This suggests that the Kluger’s $25K higher price is largely buying you performance and interior space.

So, there you have it. Stepping up in size and therefore price brings you a bigger car with more space, and more performance. It doesn’t necessarily bring you more safety or more features, which is not what we would have assumed at the outset. Medium SUVs have never been so luxurious or well-equipped, and that’s a direct result of their current popularity. 

Car companies are pushing to give buyers everything they need and want, irrespective of the size of car.

You could argue the Kluger is a true seven-seater whereas the Outlander is an occasional seven-seater, and we would agree. 

Just don’t make the mistake of assuming you’re getting more in all other areas too.

Overall Ratings

Drive’s Pick

2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Wagon

8.2/ 10

8.2/ 10

2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Wagon

8.2/ 10

8.2/ 10

Ratings Breakdown

2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Wagon
2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Wagon
Ride Quality
2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Wagon
2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Wagon
Handling & Dynamics
2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Wagon
2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Wagon
Driver Technology
2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Wagon
2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Wagon
Interior Comfort + Packaging
2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Wagon
2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Wagon
2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Wagon
2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Wagon
Infotainment & Connectivity
2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Wagon
2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Wagon
Fuel Efficiency
2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Wagon
2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Wagon
2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Wagon
2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Wagon
Fit for Purpose
2022 Mitsubishi Outlander Exceed Wagon
2022 Toyota Kluger Grande Wagon
James Ward

James has been part of the digital publishing landscape in Australia since 2002 and has worked within the automotive industry since 2007. He joined CarAdvice in 2013, left in 2017 to work with BMW and then returned at the end of 2019 to spearhead the content direction of Drive.

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