As a busy mum I spend a considerable amount of time in the car.  And by considerable I mean a ridiculous amount of time.  School drop off / pickup/ shopping / errands / work meetings / more shopping … you get the gist. And I’m pretty confident it’s a similar scenario in most households these days too.

As I said, we spend A LOT of time in the car.  So when Mitsubishi invited me to join them in Sydney last week for the 2016 Mitsubishi Outlander Launch I couldn’t say ‘yes’ fast enough!  

And rather than keep it all to myself, I thought what a great opportunity to share with you what actually goes on behind the scenes with new cars, launches and motoring journalists. Because I know you’ve all been wondering…

To give you a little background, we’re a two car family. Hubby drives a small-ish Kia Cerrato hatch which gives us great economical city driving. She’s zippy, reliable and quite frankly runs on the smell of an oily rag. Then we’ve got our large Ford Territory SUV which is perfect for family outings, my day to day business travel and heaps of space for a growing family.  I love a good SUV for the safety and space. My favourite features are sitting up high in traffic, seeing what’s happening on the road in front of me and, with 2 kids in car seats, being able to get them in and out without killing my back is a winner in my books (and I’m sure yours too!)

So for my inaugural car launch, I joined 27 other motoring media reps from around the country at the Four Seasons Hotel in Sydney’s CBD. I was so excited but I have to admit, I was pretty nervous too! Even though there was an incredibly excited energy in the air it quickly became very evident that these guys mixed in similar circles quite regularly. And when I say ‘guys’, I mean blokes. An ENTIRE room full of them. Yep, I was the ONLY woman in the room. Nothing like stretching the comfort zone! Hats off to Mitsubishi for understanding the value of a woman’s perspective in a male dominated industry.

And when I say ‘guys’, I mean blokes. An ENTIRE room full of them. Yep, I was the ONLY woman in the room.

Now I’m no teacher’s pet but people who know me will not be surprised to hear that once inside I took a seat right at the front.  Well, I didn’t want to miss a piece of the action did I?  Laptop, camera, phone, front-row seat and I was ready to roll.

First up, we heard from Mutsuhiro Oshikiri, Mitsubishi Australia’s CEO who talked us through the global market and gave us a hint of what was to come with the new Outlander… exciting times ahead.

Mitsubishi-Outlander-Launch

Then came the moment we’d been waiting for. The unveiling of the 2016 Mitsubishi Outlander . TA DAAAAAAA! First reaction? SEXY! I don’t know what it is with me and cars being sexy but I am clearly a sucker for soft, sleek lines and this baby ticks all the sexy boxes.

MItsusbishi-Outlande-launch
And there she is – the 2016 MItsubishi Outlander. Did I mention my favourite colour is RED!? It’s a sign!

Mitsubishi-Outlander-Launch

So we all paired up, grabbed our map, a set of keys and set off on our adventure!  We drove from the Sydney CBD through to Narambeen, changed drivers and then up to Cottage Point for lunch. It was a great opportunity to get to know one another but, more importantly to put the car through her paces in city driving and then on the quite windy and hilly drive to Cottage Point.

Mitsubishi-Outlander-Launch
14 Sparkly new MItsubishi Outlanders ready for the ‘Drive’ program – pick a colour!

Once we made our way up into the Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park, we stopped for lunch at the Cottage Point Inn right on the waterfront.  Those poor, unsuspecting diners looking forward to an idyllic waterfront lunch in peace and quiet didn’t know what hit them when we all lobbed in!  It was fabulous to network with the other motoring journos a little more over lunch and pick their brains about what’s what in the motoring world. Plus it was a chance to enjoy a moment to myself with NO KIDS. I was half a world away and loving every minute of it!

Mitsubishi-Outlander-Launch

After lunch we swapped cars (this time we chose the Petrol model to compare with the previous diesel) and made our way back to the Airport. I learnt so much about the industry, the cars and I even grilled my new found friend about what he thought of the Outlander and other cars in its class. Needless to say we were both pretty impressed. For me, I just loved the power, the brilliant handling through the winding hills and it was such a smooth drive with the CVT Transmission (more on that to come, so stay tuned!)

Before we knew it we were back in the hustle and bustle of Sydney life in peak hour and then I was boarding my  plane back home.  That was one amazing day in Sydney and a real eye-opener on what goes on in the motoring world when there’s a new car on the block.

Mitsubishi-Outlander-Launch

High fives to the car manufacturers for really ensuring the motoring journalists are able to get behind the wheel and really get a feel for these cars before they write their reviews for the public to consider.  I was really impressed.  In fact I was SO impressed that I’ve organised to pick up a brand new Outlander in Melbourne this weekend and the hubby, kids and I will be putting her through her paces as we Road Trip Along the Great Ocean Road.

You’ll need to wish me luck though. At 3 and 5 my boys haven’t ever been longer than a few consecutive hours in the car.  It’s going to be a big call to get through this unscathed.  Mitsubishi can give us a great car with plenty of room to move but I’m counting on the kids to keep their end of the bargain!  Thank goodness our Deputy Editor Tania wrote this guide on How to Rock the Family Road Trip. She’s a seasoned “road tripper” and there’s definitely a tip or three I’ll be taking onboard as we head out on our big adventure.

So wish me luck! I’m sure I’ll have plenty to say when we get back.  I mean seriously. What could possibly go wrong?

 

Author

Belinda's a passionate advocate for community and connection. As the founder of the Mum Central Network she’s committed to celebrating the journey that is Australian parenthood. Mum to two cheeky boys, and wife to her superstar husband, they live a busy but crazy lifestyle in Adelaide. Great conversation, close friends and good chocolate are her chosen weapons for daily survival. Oh, and bubbles. Champagne is key.

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