The Mitsubishi Outlander Sport offers great styling and a comfortable interior with plenty of room for hauling kids and groceries in a more compact size than the Outlander. It’s the better choice for urban dwellers who have no need of a third row but still want the perks of driving a crossover SUV.
There are some definite pluses and minuses to be considered beyond its more compact size and affordable price tag compared to the Outlander. Let’s kick things off with price, which starts at $19,595 for the base ES model. This is affordable by any measurement, but you’re getting bare bones here and will likely want to add a few amenities.
The SE trim with AWC (All-Wheel Control) has a base of $24,195 and comes standard with super-wide high intensity discharge (HID) headlights, fog lights w/LED running lights, rear LED combination tail lights, 18″ alloy wheels, heated side view mirrors and front seats, automatic air conditioning, and a leather wrapped steering wheel and shift knob. There are also safety features including hill start assist, anti-lock brakes, electronic brakeforce distribution (EBD) and brake assist, active stability control, traction control logic, and a tire pressure monitoring system.
You get a lot for just under $25K but there are several packages available to enhance things even more including the top-of-the line Touring Package. This ups the 6.1″ touchscreen to a 7″ touchscreen, and adds leather seats, a 710 watt Rockford Fosgate premium sound system, auto dimming rear view mirror, power driver’s seat, panoramic glass roof, and black roof rails for $4,900.
Our tester was the 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport SE AWC with Touring Package and even with all those amenities, it still managed to come in just south of $30K with a price of $29,095 excluding destination and handling. This crossover is definitely a good value.
On the outside, truly, it looks like it should cost more, especially the way the lights look at night. The vibe is more luxury car than affordable car. This extends to the interior which looks and feels comfortable. Trims are of good quality and although there is lots of plastic, the finishes manage to keep things from looking cheap.
The front seats are easily adjustable to the right driving position regardless of height and even after several hours behind the wheel, they never felt stiff. The second row is equally comfortable with ample room for three adults, although the middle seat is not suited to longer drives. Rear heated floor ducts are a nice touch and make cold mornings more bearable for the kids.
Fuel economy numbers will have you smiling and keeping money in your pocket at the pump with a 24/30/27 city/highway/combined EPA rating. A 10-year/100,000 mile powertrain warranty will also keep money in your pocket rather than the dealerships should you run into trouble.
That pretty much sums up the pluses, so it’s time to take a look at the minuses. Under the hood is a 2.0-liter, I-4 with 148 horsepower and 145 lb-ft of torque paired to CVT. That isn’t a heck of a lot of power for a vehicle this size and, unfortunately, it’s very noticeable on the road.
Driving on side roads where you won’t need speed and acceleration, it’s just fine. It handles well and is quiet inside and very well-mannered. Highway driving, however, isn’t the same.
The engine noise is loud and there is no doubt that it’s working as hard as possible to merge into traffic. Those merges don’t come easy and you will need to leave plenty of room so as not to have other cars right on top of you in a flash. Once at highway speeds, it’s also challenging to accelerate with no chance for a sudden burst of speed.
Ultimately, the 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport SE is an economical choice for those seeking a crossover. Its size makes it perfect for city driving and it provides plenty of utility along with good fuel economy in a comfortable and attractive package. A performance car it is not, but as long as that’s not your focus, then the Outlander Sport will make you happy.
2015 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport SE
Base Price: $24,195
Price As Tested: $29,095 (not including destination charge)
- Beautiful Exterior
- Lots of Standard Features
- Small Footprint
- Under Powered
- Loud Ride