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The Mitsubishi Eclipse Aircross: A combination of refreshed styling, dynamic design and performance

First launched here in 2019, the Eclipse Cross has augmented its place as one of the stellar models for Mitsubishi and has contributed immensely towards the growth of the brand over the last 18 months. The latest 1.5t offering with an eight-step CVT transmission is really in a class of its own and has been well received in Mzansi. A strong SUV heritage representing all the best attributes of Mitsubishi Motors South Africa (MMSA). The 'newcomer' is not only a game-changer for Mitsubishi Motors in terms of the competitiveness of its SUV line-up, but is a segment breaker in the market with its sleek, sporty design and SUV capabilities. The Eclipse Cross is a compelling value proposition for customers, considering the quality and value it offers. In the test drive for a week recently, the all-round safety, improved technology and ride quality all shone brightly and did not disappoint.
Image credit: Naresh Maharaj
Image credit: Naresh Maharaj

Through dynamic performance, spirited design and progressive technology, the new Eclipse Cross is crafted to ignite passion. It will inspire customers to be bold and to break away from the norm,” explains Nic Campbell, general manager of MMSA.

Bold design statement


The new model’s vibrant styling expresses a fresh sportiness and stylishness, while the sharply sculpted character lines make a bold statement on the road. Its design is a balance between the sporty wedge shape of a coupé and the practicality, space and comfort of an SUV. Apart from lending the Eclipse Cross an adventurous character, this creates a sense of undeniable sophistication.

Image credit: Naresh Maharaj
Image credit: Naresh Maharaj

The rear has evolved from the previous shape and the split rear tailgate window has been replaced by a sharply sculpted hexagonal design with a single piece of glass. The rear boot end has also undergone a styling change, boasting a sportier look. The rear lamps now have a distinctive three-dimensional Y-shaped design, and extend upward and inward elegantly to follow the shape of the outside of the tailgate glass.

More features


The list is extensive and all add to the value for your money. These are just some of the added features:

  • Electrically adjustable foldaway mirrors with indicator light
  • Projector LED headlights with levelling device
  • Daytime running lights (DRL)
  • Dusk-sensing headlamps
  • Front fog lamps
  • Rain-sensing windscreen wipers
  • Front and rear park distance control
  • Rear spoiler with high-mounted stop lamp
  • Front bumper skid plate
  • 18-inch alloy wheels
  • Roof rails

Image credit: Naresh Maharaj
Image credit: Naresh Maharaj

Interior: Comfort and practical


In keeping with the exterior, the cabin of the new Eclipse Cross has an upgraded sporty design and is packed to the hilt with an extensive selection of features.

“Spaciousness is one of the greatest strengths of the new Eclipse Cross. Finding a comfortable driving position is easy thanks to electric seat adjustment, now standard for both the driver and passenger seats, whilst maintaining plenty of head and legroom for all occupants,” says Campbell.

Other interior highlights include Smartphone-Link Display Audio featuring Android Auto and Apple Car Play mirroring, trip information, fuel consumption data vehicle health indicators, paddle shifts, multi-function leather steering wheel with audio and cruise control, leather seats and 60/40 split rear seats, amongst others.

Takes two


The new Eclipse Cross will be offered in two derivatives. Both are front-wheel drive and feature a continuously variable transmission (CVT). There are two engine options, the first being Mitsubishi’s latest 1.5l four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine. It delivers an impressive performance of 110kW. This powerplant is coupled with an eight-step automatic gearbox which supports smooth, powerful acceleration and outstanding fuel efficiency.

The second engine option is the 2l Dohc 16-valve four-cylinder engine which uses a multipoint fuel injection system. The drive was effortless, delivering smooth acceleration from any speed, slick gear changes and an easy ride, and because it keeps the engine at optimum performance at all times, fuel efficiency is enhanced.

Impressive safety


Like all Mitsubishi models in South Africa, the new Eclipse Cross boasts a full complement of advanced active and passive safety features. These include seven airbags, side-impact protection bars, anti-lock braking system with brake assist, electronic brake-force distribution, hill start assist, active stability and traction control, electric parking brake with an auto-hold functionality, keyless operation and rear-view camera.

Heads up


One of the added safety is the head-up display, which reflects relevant vehicle information in full colour on a glass panel above the instrument cluster for easy viewing. The image brightness and display height can be adjusted to suit driver preferences and time of day, and the screen is equipped with auto-retract functionality.

Greater value for money


The new Eclipse Cross range is priced aggressively, starting from R459,995 for the 2.0 GLS derivative and R499,995 for the 1.5t GLS.

Enhancing the value proposition is a three-year/100,000km warranty, a five-year/90,000km service plan and five-year/unlimited mileage roadside assistance. Service intervals are set at 15,000km.

About Naresh Maharaj

Naresh Maharaj is a petrol head who loves cars and writing about them. He is also a Member of the SA Guild of Motoring Journalists. Naresh is also an international sports correspondent and an acclaimed corporate MC and voice-over artist. Naresh is a sports/news producer for community radio stations and also an award-winning sports journalist. Contact Naresh on moc.liamg@123jarahamn.
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