2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Review: Back Of The Class

by Deiondre van der Merwe

Mitsubishi is the fastest progressing Asian-badged automaker in America. For a good reason, too, with NHTSA and Kelley Blue Book awards being thrown at their vehicles from every direction. Mitsubishi as a whole is definitely something to write home about, but is the 2020 Eclipse Cross? The compact crossover SUV looks great on the outside and offers functional practicality but seems to fall behind rivals in many areas, not the least of which is Mitsubishi's insistence on using a hallowed sports car name for a mainstream crossover SUV. Power comes from a 1.5-liter turbo four-cylinder with 152 horsepower on tap with front- and all-wheel-drive available and a CVT automatic handling mundane chores like traffic. But in the compact realm, rivals like an all-new Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, and Mazda CX-5 simply dominate, and the Eclipse Cross pales in comparison. Possibly the only benefit to owning an Eclipse Cross would be having a "remember that one mistake I made" story to tell at the barbeque in a few years.

2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Changes: 🚙What’s the difference vs 2019 Eclipse Cross?

Given that it was only introduced to the market in 2018, the Eclipse Cross doesn't boast an extensive list of additions to its 2020 range. This year, the lineup culls the SEL Premium trim and bids farewell to its $2,500 GT Touring package, but adds an SP special edition model in their stead with limited availability. On the inside, an upgraded infotainment system with an extra USB port is found along with power-adjustable lumbar support on the driver's seat for added comfort. The LE trim and upwards now adds standard safety features inclusive of lane departure alert, high beam assist, and forward collision warning with pedestrian monitoring. All-wheel-drive equipped models receive a new lightweight AWD system, too.

Pros and Cons

  • Class-leading warranties
  • Nicely laid out interior
  • Affordable price
  • Quiet cabin
  • Surprisingly spacious
  • Subpar fuel economy
  • Tiny trunk
  • Lackluster performance
  • Shoddy ride quality on bad roads

Eclipse Cross Exterior

A typical SUV appearance is donned by the Eclipse, albeit with an angular coupe-like design vaguely hinting at the Eclipse of old. But it isn't unattractive or bland by exterior measures. Sassy and sharp styling dominate a body that is smaller than the usual for the segment, and a set of accentuated halogen headlights with LED daytime running lights are found on the front end at the base level, with the LED headlights only included on the SEL. A seamless LED light band joins two LED taillights at the rear end, and a sporty roof spoiler adds to the cheeky styling. A set of 16-inch alloy wheels is standard on the base model, and 18-inch wheels with varying color options are introduced as standard from the LE trim upwards. The SP model benefits from bespoke styling that includes a black hood badge, a carbon-look grille, carbon-look wing mirrors, and a body kit with front and rear bumper addenda and an enlarged rear spoiler.

2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Front Angle View Mitsubishi
2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Rear Angle View Mitsubishi
2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Front Angle View 1 Mitsubishi
See All 2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Exterior Photos

Dimensions

The Eclipse is on the small side for the segment and queues behind its rivals in most important measurements. Excluding its 105.1-inch wheelbase that is slightly longer than that of the CR-V, its total length measurement of 173.4 inches is almost nine inches shorter than the Honda. The Mitsubishi is narrower than rivals, too, with an overall width of 71.1 inches. Two of the Eclipse's key attributes include curb weights ranging from 3,285 lbs in FWD base-level guise to 3,516 lbs in fully-specced AWD form (which is slightly lighter than both the CX-5 and the CR-V), and a marginally better eight-inch ground clearance in FWD guise over the Mazda's 7.5 inches, while the AWD Eclipse offers a slightly better 8.5 inches of ground clearance. When FWD-equipped, the Eclipse has a total height of 66.3 inches that increases to 66.5 inches on AWD models.

  • Length 173.4 in
  • Wheelbase 105.1 in
  • Height 66.3 in
  • Max Width 71.1 in
  • Front Width 60.8 in
  • Rear Width 60.8 in

Exterior Colors

Mitsubishi makes a total of seven color choices available for the Eclipse range, though two of the hues will come at an extra cost. Five metallic shades are available from the entry-level model to the top of the range, and adventurous choices include Tarmac Black, Octane Blue, and Bronze. Lighter, more understated metallic hues are inclusive of Alloy Silver and Mercury Gray. Pearl White is available for an additional $395 for those wanting a premium paint at a relatively affordable price, but the most expensive option available is the stunning Red Diamond at a steeper $595 asking price. All of the best things in life come at a price, and our favorite color is the Red Diamond.

  • Pearl White
  • Red Diamond
  • Alloy Silver Metallic
  • Mercury Gray Metallic
  • Octane Blue Metallic
  • Tarmac Black Metallic
  • Bronze Metallic

Eclipse Cross Performance

If you're anything like us, when you hear the words "Mitsubishi Eclipse" your mind will immediately provide flashback images of Paul Walker expertly snap shifting through 73 gears and having the time of his life. The Eclipse Cross shares zero DNA with its smaller sport-focused namesake, and the 1.5-liter turbo takes around 8.5 seconds to get from 0-60 in real-world testing. This is on par with the acceleration of the base-level CX-5, but the turbocharged engine found on upper trim levels of the CX-5 puts the Eclipse to shame. Each of the four trim levels come standard equipped with front-wheel drive, and AWD is available for an extra $1,600 on all trims. The Eclipse shares a maximum towing capacity with the Honda CR-V and is capable of hauling up to 1,500 pounds, though it's not as capable as the CX-5's maximum of 2,000 lbs.

2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Front View Driving Mitsubishi
2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Side View Driving Mitsubishi
2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Engine Mitsubishi

Engine and Transmission

All trim levels in the Eclipse Cross range share a 1.5-liter turbo four-pot that delivers power outputs of 152 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque - weaker than both the CR-V and Mazda CX-5. An automatic continuously variable transmission (CVT) is found across the range and delivers smooth transitions between ratios, but unfortunately gives off the unpleasant droning noise that's common with most CVTs and comes with the sacrifice of performance and excitement. That being said, the engine itself is relatively quiet at slower speeds, and not much engine noise manages to make it into the cabin around the city, it's when you venture onto the highway that things start getting a bit clamorous. Notably, no manual option is available for the SUV, but the CVT doesn't do a terrible job at getting you going from a standstill.

  • Engine
    1.5-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
  • Transmission
    Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
  • Drivetrains
    4X4, FWD

Handling and Driving Impressions

Here's where we can finally stop being total Debbie Downers about the Japanese SUV's capabilities. Of course. There are still spots here where it's lacking, but, to be fair, we'll start with the good stuff. The Eclipse Cross provides a nice level of comfort and soaks up smaller bumps with skill, though its pliable nature results in some significant body-roll in and out of the bends. Bigger bumps are guaranteed to throw the SUV off though, and taking the road less traveled might result in some discomfort, especially when the 18-inch wheels are opted for. Its light steering is a pro for parking, but numb feedback results in negative over-all maneuverability.

The Eclipse lacks a lot of excitement and trails far behind the CR-V's engaging driving experience and punchy acceleration. It's also less refined than rivals like the upscale CX-5 or even the Hyundai Tucson.

Eclipse Cross Gas Mileage

Sadly, fuel economy is yet another category where the competition outshines the Eclipse Cross. The base-level ES FWD is the most efficient of the lot with EPA-estimated figures of 26/29/27 mpg city/highway/combined. This figure drops slightly throughout the rest of the trims to estimates of 25/28/26 mpg in FWD form. These estimates are less than the FWD Mazda CX-5's 25/31/28 mpg EPA estimates, but the nail is officially driven into the coffin by the FWD Honda CRV's frugal 28/34/30 mpg figures. To keep it fair, we considered AWD figures for the CR-V, too, and the fuel economy of the Honda is still better, even in AWD guise. As for the Eclipse Cross, AWD sees gas mileage drop to 25/26/25 mpg across most of the range. When the 16.6-gallon fuel tank is full on the FWD-equipped Eclipse, you can expect just under 450 miles of travel, however, the AWD Eclipse's 15.8-gallon tank allows for close on 400 miles.

  • Fuel Tank Capacity
    16.6 Gallons
  • Fuel Economy
    City/Hwy: 26/29 mpg
* 2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross ES FWD

Eclipse Cross Interior

For the most part, the interior of the Eclipse is attractive and doesn't show undeniable evidence of cheap material usage, even in the base model. The cabin layout is clean and straightforward, though inside space is lacking compared to rivals. A solid win for the Eclipse would be its lengthy list of standard features from the just-above-base LE that includes a multifunction steering wheel, automatic climate control, and full smartphone integration. But while it's fine in isolation, against rivals like a Kia Sportage or Mazda CX-5, the Eclipse Cross feels dated, despite updates made for 2020. It lacks the premium feel of those rivals, and with much shorter overall proportions, it also lacks their spaciousness.

2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Dashboard Mitsubishi
2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Driver Seat Mitsubishi
2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Dashboard 1 Mitsubishi
See All 2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

The five-seater SUV needs some work in terms of its interior space and seating, but it isn't all bad for the Eclipse. The driver's seat is six-way manually adjustable in all trim levels except for the SEL that boasts an eight-way power-adjustable seat for the driver. A downfall for the seats would be the lack of lumbar support offered by the likes of rivals. The front of the car offers enough headroom and legroom to get by comfortably, but the rear seating area is where the Eclipse starts running into some trouble. 35.3 inches of legroom can be found in the rear of the Mitsubishi, which is notably less than the CR-V's 40.4-inch offering, but the 37.3 inches of headroom is ample for most.

  • Seating capacity
    5-seater
  • Front Leg Room 40.9 in
  • Front Head Room 39.5 in
  • Rear Leg Room 35.3 in
  • Rear Head Room 37.3 in

Interior Colors and Materials

Another welcome positive for the Eclipse would be its utilization of high-quality materials, even in the most affordable model in the range. Mitsubishi used hard-touch plastics sparingly for the dash area and added plenty of chrome bits for a more premium feel. The two most affordable trim levels, the ES and LE, come standard with black cloth upholstery and no additional color options, while the SE comes with higher quality fabric upholstery that is available in either black or gray. It's only the top of the range Eclipse Cross that sees black leather upholstery. A leather-clad steering wheel and a leather gearshift are included as standard on the SE and SEL trim levels.

Eclipse Cross Trunk and Cargo Space

Trunk space in the Eclipse severely lacks in comparison to rivals, with a diminutive measurement of 22.6 cubic feet behind the second row of seats. This will do for a stroller, so it's not useless, but comparing it to the CX-5 will hurt its feelings, and putting it next to the CR-V might as well be throwing it to the wolves. The CR-V has a trunk space measurement of 39.2 cubic feet, which is a whopping 16.6 cubic foot difference - the equivalent of an entire trunk in a hatchback. Total cargo measurements are even sadder, with the Mitsubishi offering a doleful 48.9 cu-ft of space with all seats folded against the Mazda's 59.6 cubic feet and the Honda's colossal 75.8 cubes.

Interior cargo space makes an honest attempt to rescue the situation with deep door pockets and ample center console storage space. The glove box is also considerably sized and is capable of holding a pair of sunglasses and a makeup bag or two.

2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Trunk Space Mitsubishi
2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Front Angle View 2 Mitsubishi
2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Side View Mitsubishi

Eclipse Cross Infotainment and Features

Features

Say what you will about the Eclipse, but it doesn't offer many features, and the ones it does offer are largely limited to the upper trims. On the base models, you'll only see the likes of a six-way manually adjustable driver's seat and four-way adjustable front passenger seat, a tilt-and-telescopic steering wheel, and a rearview camera. You also get cruise control, automatic climate control, and remote keyless entry. However, if you're looking for heated front seats you'll have to opt for the LE, while power front seat adjustment is only available on the SEL. Dual-zone climate control makes an appearance from the SE and SEL trim levels, while proximity entry and push-button start only show face in the SE and SEL. Driver aids can be found as standard from the SE trim, with features like blind-spot monitoring, lane change assist, automatic high beams, and forward collision mitigation added at this point, while adaptive cruise control can only be equipped on the SEL.

Infotainment

If infotainment is important to you, it's best to look at the base model like Sandra Bullock looks at anything in Bird Box. A seven-inch touchscreen with AM/FM/HD Radio suffices as the central display on the ES model, while higher trim levels see the addition of the same size screen with an additional touchpad controller. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto make an appearance from the LE trim and upwards, along with SiriusXM satellite radio. The touchpad is quite vexing and overcomplicates simple tasks like volume adjustment or radio station navigation. A four-speaker sound system comes standard with the ES and LE, but an upgraded six-speaker sound system is included on the SE and SEL, with an option for a premium Rockford Fosgate sound system at an additional cost, and only on the SEL.

Eclipse Cross Problems and Reliability

Mitsubishi's newest SUV has only been around for about two years, so naturally, there aren't many official grievances about the Eclipse Cross. Some 2019 models were subjected to a recall for the possibility of the collision avoidance system delaying braking, but no 2020 models have been recalled as yet; a good sign, but the year is still young. A notable strong point for the SUV would be the offering of an excellent ten-year/60,000-mile drivetrain warranty that outshines all of its rivals considerably, and a better-still five-year/60,000-mile basic warranty. An additional plus is the five-year roadside assistance plan, also the best of its rivals.

Warranty

  • Basic:
    5 Years \ 60,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain:
    10 Years \ 100,000 Miles
  • Corrosion:
    7 Years \ 100,000 Miles
  • Roadside Assistance:
    5 Years \ Unlimited Miles

Eclipse Cross Safety

The 2020 Eclipse Cross achieved an overall score of five out of five from the NHTSA in its crash tests, the highest available honor from the organization. It also scored high marks from the IIHS with Good ratings in all of its crash tests.

Key Safety Features

An adequate number of safety features come standard equipped on the Eclipse Cross from its entry-level model, but if you're after a full house of safety bits, it's best to consider the SE and SEL models. Standard safety features from entry-level models include a rearview camera, hill-start assist, tire-pressure monitoring, and seven airbags (dual front, front side, side curtain, and a driver knee airbag). The great stuff only starts to show from the SE, and features are inclusive of blind-spot warning, lane change assist, lane departure warning, rear cross-traffic alert, automatic high-beam assist, and an electric parking brake, while adaptive cruise control is optional and only on the SEL.

Verdict: 🏁Is the 2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross a good SUV?

Almost everything that the Mitsubishi Eclipse does, a rival can do better. We gave the SUV the benefit of the doubt in many categories, but the Eclipse is simply a bran muffin amongst red velvet cupcakes. The interior is nicely put together, and Mitsubishi offers a fantastic array of class-leading warranties for its newest SUV. Still, aside from those positives, it was an arduous task to find any areas that the Mitsubishi outshined its well-respected rivals. That being said, if the Eclipse had a stand-alone evaluation, it would prove to be capable enough to live with, but putting it next to the competition sealed its fate. The SUV is outshined by rivals in terms of size, performance, and, most notably, its meager trunk space offering. Aside from its class-leading warranty and nice interior setup, perhaps the only other positive of the Eclipse would be that it's around $2,000 cheaper than rivals, but for an extra two thousand, you can get your hands on a CR-V that puts most rivals to shame.

🚘What's the Price of the 2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross?

The most affordable model of the lot would be the front-wheel-drive ES with an MSRP of $22,995 that increases to $24,595 when it is equipped with all-wheel-drive. Climbing the ladder to the FWD LE sees an MSRP of $24,095, and adding AWD will bring the price up to $25,695. The sportier-looking SP trim will cost $25,295 when FWD-equipped and $26,895 when fitted with AWD. When you opt for the model just under the top of the range, the FWD SE will set you back by $25,645, and going for the AWD version will hike the price up to $27,245. The most premium SEL model equipped with FWD will come in at $27,145, and the range is rounded off nicely with the AWD SEL's $28,745 asking price.

2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Models

Five trims are available for the 2020 Eclipse Cross: ES, LE, SP, SE, and SEL. The entire 2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross range employs a turbocharged 1.5-liter four-pot and CVT transmission. All trims come standard equipped with FWD and make AWD available at an additional cost.

The base model ES comes with 16-inch wheels, halogen headlights, and LED taillights. Black cloth upholstery is the only option on this trim level. Keyless entry is standard along with cruise control and automatic climate control. A seven-inch touchscreen enables AM/FM/HD Radio and Bluetooth streaming through a four-speaker sound system. Standard safety features include seven airbags and a rearview camera.

The Special Edition (SP) adds some Special Edition badging, a sportier rear spoiler and a stylish carbon-style grille as well as rear, side, and front dam extensions.

On the exterior, 18-inch are added to the LE along with heated front seats and full smartphone integration via Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and SiriusXM as well as a touchpad-controlled seven-inch central display and an extra USB port.

A significant number of features are added to the SE, inclusive of proximity entry and rain-sensing windshield wipers for the exterior. Higher-quality cloth upholstery is found on the inside, along with dual-zone climate control, a leather-clad steering wheel, and a six-speaker sound system. It also bolsters its standard safety features with blind-spot monitoring, forward collision warning, pedestrian monitoring, and lane-departure warning, along with lane change assist.

The top of the range SEL adds leather upholstery, an eight-way power-adjustable driver's seat, and a head-up display. Optional features exclusive to this trim include heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, and adaptive cruise control.

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
ES
1.5-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
Four-Wheel Drive
$22,995
LE
1.5-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
Four-Wheel Drive
$24,095
SP
1.5-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
Four-Wheel Drive
$25,295
SE
1.5-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
Four-Wheel Drive
$25,645
SEL
1.5-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
Four-Wheel Drive
$27,145
See All 2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Trims and Specs

Additional Packages

The most notable and expensive package on offer by the Eclipse Cross range is the Touring Package that is exclusively available on the SEL. For $2,100, it adds a host of features inclusive of a panoramic sunroof, heated steering wheel and heated rear seats, adaptive cruise control, and a fancy Rockford Fosgate sound system.

You can opt for the Panoramic Sunroof Package on the SE for an additional $1,000, which will add roof rails as well. For $495, you can add a tow hitch and a trailer tow wire to your Eclipse with the Towing Package.

🚗What Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Model Should I Buy?

Although it's not something we'd recommend, if you insist on buying an Eclipse Cross, the AWD SE would be your best bet. It adds a host of features that aren't seen on lower models, including better upholstery and dual-zone climate control, as well as a six-speaker sound system. It also strengthens its safety with added blind-spot monitoring, forward collision warning, pedestrian monitoring and lane departure warning, along with lane change assist. It's the way to enjoy a close-to-fully-loaded Eclipse at an affordable price, and considering the SEL adds only subtle features for more money, the model just before the top is the best pick of the lot.

2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Comparisons

Hyundai Kona Hyundai
Jeep Compass Jeep
CompetitorHorsepowerMPGPrice (MSRP)
Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross152 hp26/29 mpg$22,995
Hyundai Kona 147 hp27/33 mpg$20,300
Jeep Compass 180 hp23/32 mpg$22,095

2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross vs Hyundai Kona

Nearly $3,000 cheaper than the Eclipse, the Hyundai Kona produces roughly the same power as the Mitsubishi and delivers better fuel consumption with EPA estimates of 27/23/30 mpg, outshining the Eclipse's 26/29/27 mpg figures considerably. Notably, the Kona is smaller than the Eclipse on the outside, but offers more space in the front, although rear seat and cargo volumes are smaller - the Kona is classified as a subcompact SUV, after all. The Kona offers Apple CarPlay and Android Auto from the base upwards, along with a range of safety features, while on the Eclipse Cross you have to climb the trim ladder to get access to such features. If you're after a small family SUV and you're mindful of your budget, the Kona is the better choice, despite the spatial compromises made.

See Hyundai Kona Review

2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross vs Jeep Compass

Roughly $1,000 cheaper than the Eclipse, the Jeep offers more power out of the gate at 180 hp, but receives significantly lower EPA estimated figures of 22/31/25 mpg from the bigger 2.4-liter displacement motor. But the Jeep does offer more space than the Eclipse, including trunk measurements, and the infotainment suite is vastly superior to that of the Mitsubishi. The exterior of the Jeep isn't as sassy as that of the Eclipse, but the interior feels more premium in general, with higher quality materials used than its Japanese rival. We prefer the way the Jeep drives, too. The American SUV, unfortunately, has a lower safety rating from the NHTSA, but, considering that for less money it offers more power, more space, and a better interior than the Eclipse, the Jeep is the better buy of the two.

See Jeep Compass Review

Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Popular Comparisons

2020 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Video Reviews

$22,995 - $28,745
Price Range (MSRP)
Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross
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