2021 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV gets more electric range and a bigger tax break

It also gets more overall power, thanks to an upgraded rear axle motor.

The 2021 Outlander PHEV gets more efficient and more affordable, thanks to its bigger battery pack.

Mitsubishi has been hard at work on the plug-in hybrid variant of its Outlander SUV. According to an announcement made on Tuesday, that work has paid off in the form of a better all-electric range and qualification for a larger tax incentive for buyers.

The heart of the changes to the Outlander PHEV is an increase in the size of its battery pack -- this is what boosts the Outlander's electric range from 22 to 24 miles. Now, two miles may not sound like much, but that's a trip to the grocery store and back for many people, so it's not nothing.

Next, Mitsubishi upgraded the Outlander's electric rear motor, so it now produces 70 kilowatts of power, up from 60. This, combined with a more efficient 2.4-liter internal combustion engine means that total system power is now rated at 221 horsepower -- up a not-inconsiderable 31 hp over the previous model.

That's all well and good, but few buyers are likely looking at the Outlander PHEV for its electric range or power output. No, it's more likely that Mitsubishi buyers care about cost and the biggest win for the automaker comes in this department. The 2021 Outlander PHEV now qualifies for $6,587 in tax incentives. That's an increase of $751 over the 2020 model, all thanks to that bigger battery pack, and that's just the federal credit.

The base 2021 Outlander PHEV starts at a relatively reasonable $37,490, including Mitsubishi's $1,195 destination fee. That number goes up by a whopping $25 if you live in Alaska or Hawaii -- be forewarned. The 2021 Outlander PHEV is at dealers now.

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