L.A. Auto Show 2017: Mitsubishi adds Eclipse Cross to fast-growing crossover utility market

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It seems like every automaker has CUVs on the brain, and Mitsubishi is no different.

What is it?

The Japanese automaker is rolling out the 2018 Eclipse Cross, an all-new crossover utility vehicle (CUV) that carries the same Eclipse name that Mitsubishi used for a sports car through 2012.

Why it matters

This is Mitsubishi’s attempt to gain more traction in the rapidly growing CUV market, where it already competes with the Outlander and Outlander Sport.

“Our research and analysis show us that the CUV category will continue to grow for many years,” said Don Swearingen, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Mitsubishi Motors North America Inc., in a statement.

What's new?

The Eclipse Cross, which comes in four models, has a 1.5-liter direct-injection turbocharged engine that produces 152 horsepower at 5,500 rpm. The base ES model has two-wheel drive and the three other models have Mitsubishi’s “super all-wheel control” system.

Standard features include a rearview camera, Bluetooth wireless technology, seven airbags and an anti-theft alarm.

Depending on the trim level, other available features include a seven-inch thin display monitor that controls the audio system and connects to a driver’s smartphone.

Also available are a full-color heads-up display of vehicle and driving data, a panoramic sunroof, heated rear seats and Mitsubishi Connect, a subscription-based service that connects the vehicle to a call center for emergencies and roadside assistance.

Safety features include blind-spot warning, lane-departure warning, an alert for rear cross traffic and a multiview camera system.

The competition

Mitsubishi faces a crowd of rivals including Honda’s CR-V and Pilot, the Nissan Murano, Ford’s Escape and Edge, and the Toyota Highlander, Mazda CX-5, Hyundai Tucson and Kia Sorento.

The details

Mitsubishi says the Eclipse Cross has a “wedge profile” and “couple-like exterior” that includes a forward-raked rear window and “beefy fenders projecting the image of a powerful athlete.” Car and Driver says it “is well-constructed and well-equipped, and it feels entirely capable of coping with the duty cycles that will be asked of it, but it does all this with little distinct personality beyond ‘unexceptional crossover.’” It has what the company calls “an aggressive starting price” of $23,295.

The L.A. Auto Show runs Dec. 1-10 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. Times coverage beginning Nov. 25 is at

Twitter: @PeltzLATimes