FOR when you’ve got to be different, there’s the 2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Exceed. It’s the Japanese car maker’s most unusual looking SUV, with a style all of its own. That look includes a unique split rear window.
Sitting between the now quite beefed up ASX and the Outlander, the Eclipse Cross Exceed is an all-wheel drive soft roader, with the Exceed edition the pinnacle of its model range. Born in 2017 it has since polarised opinion, particularly when it comes to its exterior style.
At first glance, its appearance is striking, but in those immortal words first uttered by Margaret Wolfe Hungerford, “beauty is in the eye of the beholder”. With sharp angles everywhere, it won’t be everyone’s cup of tea.
Enough of the analogies though, the back end offers a two part rear window to complete the outer styling of the Eclipse Cross. Inside, or on the roof as the case may be, the twin window thing continues, with double sunroof panels.
That feature makes the Exceed model look quite different. There are leather seats though, reminding us that this is the top of the line model, and you’ll also find a dash that’s a flowing mix of piano black and silver. The two work well together.
It’s spacious and the technology is good too, with user friendly interfaces and simple, responsive Bluetooth connectivity. There’s no SatNav, but there is Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, so it’s Google maps or similar to guide the way to your next destination.
The powerhouse of the Eclipse Cross is a 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine pushing out 110KW and 250Nm of torque. It’s not quite enough to put you into the stratosphere but it will get you around town easily and conserve fuel along the way.
You can even tow with the Mitsubishi SUV, with a 1600kg braked towing capacity, which is ideal for getting around with a box trailer or a small boat. It feels agile on the road too, with light steering helping it offer an extremely user friendly driving experience.
Braking in the Eclipse Cross is also very reassuring and incredibly responsive. The 2020 edition is equipped with S-AWC or Super All Wheel Control, Mitsubishi’s active yaw control braking system designed to optimally distribute torque to the left and right wheels.
It works a treat, even if you unintentionally brake or accelerate too hard around a gravel covered corner. You can also choose different modes depending on your needs, including Auto, Snow and Gravel.
The 2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Exceed comes with a 5-star ANCAP safety rating, thanks to seven airbags, autonomous emergency braking, lane departure warning, blind spot monitoring, lane change assist and rear cross traffic alert.
There’s also adaptive cruise control, a head-up display, LED lightning headlights, and the powered double panoramic sunroof. The back half has an opening and closing blind, while the front half opens in a traditional fashion.
It’s a good all-round SUV that looks different. Available in 2WD and AWD, the Eclipse Cross Exceed is priced from $42,990 drive away. There’s no manual variant and no diesel power plant either.
It handles the daily commute exceedingly well, and is more than capable of long trips. It’s user friendly too. It does find itself in the predicament of competing with its own brand, namely the ASX, along with a saturated market space loaded with competitors.
Our test vehicle came to us in the super pretty Lightning Blue Pearl, but it can also be had in White Solid, Starlight, Sterling Silver, Red Diamond, Titanium and Black. It comes with a 5-year/100,000km warranty and Mitsubishi’s Diamond Advantage offer.
The offer includes 12 months roadside assist, and membership of Mitsubishi’s Diamond Advantage Club, which adds a range of benefits. Once you’ve completed your scheduled 12 month service, you’ll get another 12 months membership.
Our test vehicle was provided by Mitsubishi Motors Australia. To find out more about the 2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Exceed, contact your local Mitsubishi dealer.