The 2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross and Hyundai Kona are two of the newest entries in the increasingly popular subcompact crossover segment. In this area of the market, where style is as important as surprising amounts of interior space, these two newcomers will go head-to-head for buyers who want something unique. Let's take a look at how these two compare to each other.
2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross vs Hyundai Kona
All-important Styling: Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross
Nissan probably kick-started the trend toward unique styling with the funky and love-it-or-hate-it Juke. The Eclipse Cross and the Kona are both much more attractive than that, and that's a good thing. It's easy to see Mitsubishi in the Eclipse Cross, although forget about any comparison between this SUV and the sporty vehicle bearing the same name that was last produced for the 2012 model year. The Mitsubishi is handsome, elegant and has a touch of prestige about it, although it's probably not as sporty as some in the segment.
Some people will love the laid-back and funky look of the Kona, especially because it can be customized with bold colors. However, overall, the Kona looks like a collection of styling hits from other models rather than a cohesive design. It's not hard to like the Hyundai, but it's easier to love the Mitsubishi.
Interior Space: Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross
Although there isn't a lot of difference in interior space between these two crossovers, the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross does have the edge by almost every measurement. It's the same story with cargo space, although the difference between the Eclipse Cross and the Kona's cargo area is larger than the interior space difference.
Both cars are probably still only suitable for four people rather than the advertised five, unless those in the back are very small or all children, of course. This has to be another win for the Eclipse Cross, but the higher asking price for the Mitsubishi perhaps makes that expected.
Power and Performance: Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross
Under the hood of the Mitsubishi is a new 1.5-liter turbo-four, that will soon find its way into other models in the expanding range. This engine delivers excellent performance, thanks to its 184 lb.-ft. of torque and 152 horsepower that's right there when you want and need it. That torque is available from as little as 1,500 rpm, which makes the Eclipse Cross feel zippier than might be expected.
The majority of Kona models sold will come with a 2.0-liter inline-four, but the engine only delivers a disappointing 147 horsepower and 132 lb.-ft. There's also a 1.6-liter turbo, but its 175 horsepower is dampened by the extra weight in higher spec models.
Fuel Economy: Hyundai Kona
The Hyundai Kona does score a win over the Mitsubishi when it comes to fuel economy. The best figures the EPA awards to the Kona are 27 mpg in the city, 33 mpg on the highway and 30 mpg combined. The Eclipse Cross isn't ridiculously far behind with 26 mpg in the city, 29 mpg on the highway and 27 mpg combined.
The Hyundai Kona and the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross are both crossovers that will definitely appeal to the kind of youthful audience the manufacturers are aiming at, and the lower starting price of the Hyundai Kona is sure be a big plus point in its favor. But the styling of the Hyundai isn't as composed, flowing, or as premium as that of the 2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross. The Mitsubishi also offers more space, a more stylish and upscale interior and more engaging performance.