Tuesday, July 3, 2018

2018 Mitsubishi Outlander GT AWD: A Three-Row Crossover/SUV

Highlight: Three rows of seats are standard on this midsize crossover.

Test Vehicles MSRP: $34,160 (Base MSRP: $24,940)

Seating Capacity: 7 (realistically 5)

Standard Safety Features: airbags; ABS; a rearview camera; turn indicators on the mirrors; a hill start assist system; a stability control system; a traction control system; and a tire pressure monitoring system

Standard Equipment (Base ES Model): 18-inch wheels; a rear privacy glass; manually adjustable front seats; split folding second row seats; folding third row seats; a manual tilt/telescopic steering wheel; a leather wrapped shift knob; 7-inch audio system; a dual zone automatic climate control system; second row with center armrest; underfloor cargo area storage; and cargo tie down hooks

Standard Equipment GT: 3.0-liter engine; 224-horsepower engine; premium gasoline; a 6-speed automatic transmission; a super all wheel drive control system; an active front differential; paddle shifting on steering wheel; chrome grille accents; a windshield wiper de-icer; LED headlamps; automatic headlamps; power folding sideview mirrors; silver roof rails; GT badging; power driver’s seat; leather seats; driver’s seat map/seatback pocket; heated front seats; a leather wrapped steering wheel;a power sunroof;  drive mode selections; 7-inch infotainment system; a 710- watt, 9-speaker audio with SiriusXM and Apple CarPlay/Android; dual; usb ports; a multiview rear camera; an automatic dimming rearview mirror; a power remote liftgate; a blindspot warning system; a rear traffic cross alert system; a lane changing assist system; electric parking brakes; and an auto hold feature

Options: a forward collision mitigation system; a lane departure warning system; a radar activated cruise control system; an automatic high beam; and floormats
Other Trim Levels:


Standard Audio On Test Vehicle: a 6-speaker AM/FM audio system

Bluetooth Connectivity: Standard

USB Connectivity:  Standard

Bumper-to-Bumper Warranty: 5 years or 60,000 miles

Powertrain Warranty: 10 years or 100,000 miles

Standard Engine/Horsepower: 2.4-liter, 4-cylinder/166-hp

Towing Capacity: 1,500 lbs

Recommended Fuel: Regular

Standard Fuel Mileage:

What’s New: With the exception of a few tweaks to the interior packaging, the Outlander is basically unchanged.

Why: Mitsubishi has one of the best bumper to bumper new-vehicle warranties in the industry. The Outlander is available in a front wheel drive or an all wheel drive configuration, with either a 4-cylinder or a 6-cylinder engine. The crossover is available in a variety of trim levels.

The Outlander also joins the growing phase of crossovers, offering three rows of seat. At a price point of approximately $25,000, there are not too many vehicles offering seven seats. The Mitsubishi is literally in a class by itself. Ironically, the compact Nissan Rogue is available with a third row.

Mitsubishi’s three row crossover, which offers a road friendly ride, can be outfitted with some of the latest safety driving aids, depending on the trim. These safety driving aids can be added on for a mere $1,000. The safety package consists of a forward collision litigation warning system, a lane departure warning system, a radar activated cruise control system and automatic high beam headlights that turn on and off at night when on a stretch of dark roads, without any vehicles or lights within the vicinity.

But: Like a number of automakers these days who are stuffing three rows into crossovers, Mitsubishi has joined the fray. And, just like, with some of its competitors, the third row is not designed for adults or cross country trips. Its literally for short trips to lunch with the co-workers or for small kids. Cargo space is severely limited too, when the third row is in use.

Furthermore, we would have preferred knobs and buttons, as opposed to touchscreen-controlled heat and ventilation system. In fact, the Japanese automaker should consider upgrading the design of the audio and ventilation systems, so that it has a more premium look and feel.

Verdict: Mitsubishi has taken a page from the Koreans, offering not only an industry best warranty, but a value packed vehicle that is priced below the competition. The Japanese brand, which has struggled in the US market, seems to have finally found its footing. For those on a budget and seeking a lot of bang for the buck, the Outlander could be one’s savior.

Competition: Chevy Traverse; Ford Explorer; Hyundai Santa Fe; Kia Sorento; Mazda CX9; and Nissan Pathfinder

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