2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross CUV faces uphill battle in very crowded segment

 

When you hear Eclipse in the same sentence as Mitsubishi, most people immediately picture the Eclipse sports car – the iconic best-selling fun-to-drive Mitsubishi of years past.  Well Eclipse is back, but not the sports car. This go around, it is a newly designed compact crossover that Mitsubishi hopes will offer the same driving excitement in the CUV segment as it did in the Eclipse of years past.

Mitsubishi introduced their new Eclipse Cross Coupe compact SUV in 2018 – joining their Outlander and Outlander Sport sibling offerings of Cross Over Utility Vehicles.  Arriving about mid-year, sales were not encouraging at first, but gained traction through the fourth quarter – finishing the year with sales just under 10,000 units.

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

The Eclipse Cross is getting off to a much better start in 2019, with near 6,000 units sold in the first two months thanks in part, to more aggressive advertising by Mitsubishi. 

Competing in a pretty crowded segment, the Eclipse Cross is not a significant standout from the rest, but is a good compact CUV worth consideration by buyers in 2019.

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross SEL S-AWC

We borrowed a 2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross SEL S-AWC recently for a weeklong test drive.  It came in a very nice Pearl White (optional $395) with 18-inch two-tone alloy wheels and Black interior.  The MSRP for our test top-of-the-line model was $28,195.

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

Exterior

The Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross has a number of distinctive features that make it stand out from the rest – the more notable include its ‘wedge’ side profile and unique forward raked rear gate dual panel window with integrated roof spoiler, center LED hi-mount stop light and Gloss Black center front grille and bumper.

Other features of note include color-keyed bumpers front and rear with silver front and rear under garnish, beefy fenders with wheel arch moldings, chrome beltline molding, chrome side-window surround, LED headlights, LED daytime running lights, fog lights, LED combination taillights, LED high mount stop light, color keyed power folding side view mirrors and rain-sensing wipers.

 2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

Interior

On the inside, the Eclipse Cross SEL is nicely equipped.  It features a nice dual pane Panoramic Sunroof that offers both front and rear seat operation. Up front seating is heated and leather appointed with 8-way power adjustable driver seat and 4-way power adjustable passenger seat.

The center console features the S-AWC Drive Controller and touch pad controller along with cupholders and storage. The tilt and telescoping steering wheel is leather-wrapped and heated with mounted audio, phone and voice controls.

The 60/40-fold-down rear seating is heated with slide and recline feature and a center console with cupholders.

Other interior features include Dual-zone Climate Control with Micron cabin filtering and rear seating heat ducts, passive entry with push-button-start key system, dual 12V power outlets and LCD Color Multi-Information Display on the instrument cluster with High Contrast meters.

 

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross
2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

Power and Drive Train

Underneath the hood was their 1.5L L4 Direct Injected Turbo Charged engine delivering 152 horsepower (5,500 rpm) and 184 lb.-ft. of torque (2,000 rpm). It was mated to an 8-speed (step) Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) with a SPORT mode and column mounted paddle shifters.

The ‘straight-line’ performance of this combination in this vehicle was a tad disappointing.  The integration of the 8-step CVT with the turbo was not well timed causing  laboring of the powertrain at different points in acceleration.

 

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross
2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

 

However, we found the Mitsubishi Super All-Wheel Control (S-AWC) 4-wheel drive system to be a bright spot with how it managed the power dynamics for the four wheels individually and collectively while on the winding roads of Hill Country in Texas. 

The S-AWC features three driver-selectable modes – AUTO, SNOW and GRAVEL.  We did not encounter either of the latter two so left it in AUTO for the week.

Fuel economy ratings for the Eclipse Cross are 25/26 mpg city/highway and 25 combined.

 

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross
2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

Underpinnings

Our Eclipse Cross SEL S-AWC rode pretty nicely on the road over the week.  Handling was nimble, cornering pretty solid and braking firm.

The 18-inch wheels sported P225/55R18 Bridgestone all-season tires which delivered a smooth and pretty quiet ride.  Suspension was MacPherson strut with stabilizer bar front and multi-link with stabilizer bar rear.  Brakes were single piston ventilated disc front and solid disc rear. Steering was electric power assist

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

Technology

The standard for Eclipse is their 7-inch Smartphone Link High Resolution Thin-Display Audio system with a touchpad controller.  It offers Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, SiriusXM Satellite Radio, AM/FM radio, HD radio, Bluetooth Wireless capability and Mitsubishi Connect Telematics with Safeguard and Remote services.

 2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

Other convenience features include a Multi-View Surround Camera System with split-screen feature and full color Head-Up Display that is mounted between the top of the instrument cluster and windshield.  It can be raised, lowered and adjusted for optimum driver visibility.  We found its color resolution and brightness better than many.

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

Eclipse Cross Tows Too

The Eclipse Cross has a tow rating of 1,500 pounds when equipped with the Tow Package.

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

Packages and Options

Mitsubishi offers just one factory installed package across the line and it is for the SEL.  Our test vehicle included the SEL Touring Package ($2,500) that featured a 710W with 9-speakers and subwoofer, Rockford Fosgate Premium Audio System and the Two Pane Power Panoramic Roof with rear panel controls conveniently located above the rear seat console.

With an assortment of Port Installed Accessories (listed below) and destination fees, our 2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross SEL S-AWC priced at $33,305.

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

Safety and Warranty

Safety features on the Eclipse Cross include (standard or available) Rear View Camera, Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake Force Distribution and Brake Assist, Active Stability Control, Traction Control, Hill Start Assist, Tire Pressure Monitoring, Electric Park Brake with Auto Hold, Blind Spot Warning with Lane Change Assist, Lane Departure Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and Adaptive Cruise Control with Automatic Headlights and Forward Collision Mitigation.

The 2019 Eclipse Cross features a 10-year / 100,000-mile Limited Powertrain and 7-year / 100,000-mile Corrosion Warranties.

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Lineup

There are five models available for 2019. All are equipped with the 1.5L Turbo Charged four-cylinder engine and feature Mitsubishi S-AWC drive system with the exception of the base ES that is also available in front-wheel drive. MSRP prices are:

  • ES 2WD $23,595
  • ES S-AWC $24,195
  • LE S-AWC $25,195
  • SE S-AWC $26,695
  • SEL S-AWC $28,195

Destination and Handling is $1,045.

2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

There are a number of optional items that can be added to your Eclipse Touring – depending on the model.  Our SEL S-AWC was fitted with interior LED Illumination ($375), cargo area Tonneau Cover ($190), Black Lug Nuts and Wheel Locks ($225), Carpeted Floor Mats ($135) and Roof Rack Crossbars ($345).

To learn more or build your own 2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross compact CUV – click on this link:

https://www.mitsubishicars.com/eclipse-cross/2019