Cape Town - Mitsubishi’s latest entry into that crossover boomtown, the Eclipse Cross, has landed in South Africa and it’s likely to steal some thunder from the similarly-sized ASX.

Slightly longer than its sibling, and riding on an identical 2670mm wheelbase, the Eclipse Cross has a more coupe-inspired design, with its swept-back ‘boomerang’ frontal design and wedge-shaped C-pillar that flows into a two-tier bootlid that probably won’t be to everyone’s liking.

Given its sportier positioning, its key rivals are likely to be the Toyota CH-R and Nissan Qashqai.

Unlike those rivals, however, the Mitsubishi is available with all-wheel-drive, in the form of Mitsubishi’s S-AWC system with three modes: Auto, Snow and Gravel.

There is also a front-wheel-drive version for those wanting to save some money, which will probably be most customers. Both variants have a ground clearance of 180mm.

Unfortunately, local buyers won’t be able to opt for the 1.5-litre turbopetrol engine that’s available abroad, instead the only engine choice is Mitsubishi’s familiar normally aspirated 2-litre petrol unit, rated at 110kW and 198Nm and mated to a continuously variable (CVT) gearbox with a six-step Sports Mode, which can also be played with ‘manually’ via steering-mounted paddles.

The only real choice in the range is between 4x2 and 4x4 as there are no grades, thus every Eclipse Cross comes with features befitting a flagship.

These include leather seats (heated upfront and electrically controlled for the driver), automatic climate control, head-up display, multi-function steering wheel, front and rear park distance control with reverse camera, cruise control, keyless operating system, seven airbags, stability and traction control and 18-inch alloy wheels.

Furthermore, all models are sold with a three-year/100 000km warranty and five-year/90 000km service plan.

The 4x2 retails at R399 995 while the 4x4 is yours for R449 995.

IOL Motoring