Mitsubishi RVR – 1991 – 2021 Model Year Differences and Improvements

Mitsubishi RVR is a car manufactured by the Japanese automotive company Mitsubishi from 1991 to the present.

Initially, the RVR which is an acronym for “Recreational Vehicle Runner” was available as a compact multi-purpose vehicle (MPV) and later as a subcompact crossover SUV, with the first two generations that were produced from 1991 to 2002 being compact MPV’s while models produced from 2010 to the present are subcompact crossover vehicles.

In this article, we will take a brief look at the evolution of the Mitsubishi RVR to gather some insights. Please follow through.

1991 – 1996


The first generation RVR (N10/N20) was unveiled in 1991. This model was in production from 1991 to 1996.

The N10/N20 RVR has a tall wagon body with two front doors, a passenger-side sliding door, and a rear tailgate. The RVR has low step-in and step-out height for ease of ingressing and egressing. Some models come with side steps

The interior of the N10/N20 RVR is spacious. Its interior styling features five seats arranged in two rows. The rear seats can be reconfigured into 

Standard features include AM/FM stereo with cassette, remote keyless entry, power windows/door locks, air conditioning, 50:50 split foldable/removable rear seat, reclining front bucket seats, driver-side airbag, privacy glass, rear wiper/washer/defroster, power brakes, power steering, tilt-adjustable steering, and cloth upholstery, while underneath it was fitted with front and rear stabilizer bars, four-wheel independent suspension, 14-inch alloy wheels, and a stainless steel exhaust pipe.

The RVR came fitted with a base 1.8-liter (4G93) DOHC 16-valve inline-4 petrol engine with 113hp. This engine is mated to either a 4-speed automatic or a 5-speed manual with a 4WD drivetrain as an option. 

Later models had the option of a 2.4-liter 16-valve inline-4 with 136hp  mated with 4-speed automatic transmission, or the RVR Sport with the 2.4-liter  16-valve inline-4 with 136hp  mated with either a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic transmission.

1997 – 2002


In 1997 Mitsubishi released the second generation of the RVR (N60/N70) which was almost similar to the first with several upgrades.

Some exterior changes included bumper and fender extensions, xenon headlights on higher trims, power mirrors, body-colored door handles, a redesigned front grille, tilt & slide sunroof (optional), roof rails, privacy glass, and 15-inch alloy wheels.

The interior of the N60/N70 RVR is slightly more spacious than that of the N10/N20 RVR which is a result of improved external dimensions. The seats are comfortable and supportive, with the front seats having armrests. The is enough head, shoulder, and legroom for all occupants, with enough room for luggage remaining at the rear.

Standard features on the N60/N70 RVR include AM/FM full logic cassette stereo radio with four speakers, automatic air conditioning, woodgrain center panel, GDI ECO light, the Mitsubishi Multi-Communication System (MMCS), Automatic Climate Control, an enhanced multi-mode keyless entry system, and front-seat center armrest for driver and passenger with GDI ECO light.

The N60/N70 RVR came fitted with a 1.8-liter (4G93) DOHC inline-4 petrol engine with 140hp and 123 lb-ft of torque. Optional engines were the turbocharged 2.0-liter (4G63) inline-4 petrol engine with 174hp and 187 lb-ft of torque or the 2.4-liter (4G64) DOHC GDI inline-4 petrol engine with 155hp and 163 lb-ft of torque. These engines transfer power to the wheels via a 4-speed automatic, 4-speed INVECS semi-auto, and 5-speed manual transmission.

2010 – Present

The third-generation Mitsubishi (GA/XA/XB/XC/XD) RVR also known as Mitsubishi ASX or Outlander Sports in other markets is a subcompact crossover SUV manufactured by Mitsubishi Motors since 2010.

2010 -2012


The 2010 RVR’s facial features a trapezoidal grille and angular headlights similar to those fitted on the Mitsubishi Lancer, but unlike the Lancer this car is taller. The GA RVR is a short vehicle with proper SUV traits, and this is what enabled it to win the Paris – Dakar rally and World Rally Championship.

Its interior is a mixture of both car-like and off-road features. The dash is neat, its center console consists of a radio and three round temperature control dials, while the instrument cluster consists of two round meters with a small LCD in between them. This car comes with five comfortable and supportive seats, with a small transmission tunnel that does not hinder interior space creating enough head, leg, foot, and shoulder room for all passengers. The cargo area is large and can be extended by folding flat the rear seats.

The RVR is offered with the option of six petrol engines and three turbocharged diesel engines. The base engine is the 1.8-liter (4B10) inline-4 petrol engine with 140hp and 127 lb-ft. These engines are mated with either a 5 or 6-speed manual, 6-speed automatic, and 6-speed INVECS III CVT transmission.

2012 – 2016


In 2012 Mitsubishi introduced a refreshed RVR in trying to have a grip on the small crossover market.

This release featured several cosmetic changes which included a newly designed bumper, reshaped fog lights that gave the car sportier looks, and a lower apron with a broader opening. Unlike the 2010 model which had a trapezoidal grille, this model’s grille is A-shaped with a 3D pattern mesh and xenon headlights on either side. Another change is 18″ alloy wheels became standard for the 2013 model.

Interior changes included a Lancer-Evo-inspired steering wheel with aluminum accents. Some automatic transmission models were fitted with paddle shifters located behind the steering wheel. All models came fitted with an infotainment system but for the base model, it was optional.

The same engines used on the 2010 model continued being used. 

2016 -2019


In 2016 Mitsubishi implemented another facelift on the RVR in trying to entice buyers and improve the car’s appeal.

Exterior upgrades include a new front fascia fitted with a meshy black grille surrounded by chrome trim with the three-diamond symbol moved to the bonnet, an entirely different bumper, and side scoops that host the fog lights.

The interior received some upgrades such as a 6.1-inch touchscreen infotainment system, central air vents surrounded by satin-silver trim and a piano-black panel, and upholstery options, which include diamond-stitched seats. The rear seat split-fold in a 60/40 configuration which increases the luggage area from 393 liters to a maximum of 1143 liters.

Under the hood, the same engines that were previously used were used. 

2019 – Present


The evolution of the RVR continued in 2019 when Mitsubishi released another upgraded model.

The 2019 RVR’s exterior is now more stronger and robust than the 2016 model and has a lightweight body. The front and rear of the car were refreshed, with the front fascia getting restyled headlights, a prominent grille, and LED daytime running lights were introduced. The rear comes with new signature LED taillights.

Interior upgrades include a 7.0 inch (2019 model) and 8.0-inch (2020 model) touchscreen infotainment system. The seats are comfortable and are covered with cloth upholstery as standard with leather as an option.

Under the hood, the engines offered remain the same with minor tweaks.


The RVR began its journey into the car world as an MPV and did very well, and later transformed into a subcompact crossover SUV and still did very well. Here we took a look at some of the features that are found in these cars. The RVR is a safe, robust, efficient, and reliable car which is a trait that accompanies most Mitsubishi brands.

Please visit BE FORWARD and check out our list of our used Mitsubishi RVR on sale.



Written by: Samuel H. Mponezya

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