2019 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport

Explore the countryside
By Durhl Caussey, Epoch Times Contributor
May 9, 2019 Updated: May 9, 2019

This review will deal solely with the Sport version of the Outlander, which is the 5-seat cross-over sibling of the big Outlander SUV. The most outstanding design traits of the Outlander Sport are found on its superb exterior. The front grille’s solid-surface design blends “artfully” with its honeycomb mesh inserts. At the same time the new chrome-accented lower bumper extension gives the vehicle a robust and advanced fierce profile. The new rear bumper extension is both visually appealing and safe. This CUV stands tall and solidly on 18-inch alloy wheels.

The profile view of the Outlander Sport. (Courtesy of Mitsubishi)

You have a choice between the standard 148-horsepower 2.0L and the available 168-horsepower 2-4L 4-cylinder Mitsubishi Innovative Valve-timing Electronic Control (MIVEC) engines. Fuel economy for the 2.4-liter is rated at 23-mpg city and 28-mpg highway, for a 25-mpg combined average.

Both engines strive for performance and fuel efficiency, but the 2.4L powertrain felt like it was struggling at times. Even though it handled fairly well, the engine was noisy when power was requested, and didn’t have a sporty attitude. The combined engine and road noise distracted from the driving experience.

The Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) was somewhat smooth. The pulley system has a considerable range between the highest and lowest ratios, lending itself to a more economic drive.

Inside the Sport has a commanding seating position and more than adequate passenger and cargo space and versatility. The color Multi-information Display is perfectly positioned behind the redesigned steering wheel.

The full front dashboard of the Outlander Sport. (Courtesy of Mitsubishi)

The 7-inch Smartphone Link Display Audio System is where the back-up camera view also lives. It supports both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, on top of the usual SiriusXM, USB ports, and Bluetooth connectivity.

Ambient lightning is sufficiently bright and welcoming, and seats are wide and comfortable. Soft-touch materials are found on the dash and upper door trim, and the new seat fabric is a nice improvement.

Storage space is adequate and flexible thanks to the 60/40 split folding rear seats. Both seatbacks drop quickly and easily at the press of a conveniently located lever.

The standard automatic climate control lets you set the cabin temperature and fan speed with your hands on the wheel. Heated front seats are available, while the standard heated side mirrors provide clear visibility even in cold temperatures.

The Outlander will find tough competition in the SUV field. The clumsy handling, slow steering response, and body leaning in the curve will be costly. The engine needs to be able to power up quickly in the initial acceleration.

Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price is $20,945 for the absolute base 2.0 ES. The range-topping 2.4 GT AWC starts at $26,545.

5-year/60,000-mile Fully Transferable New Vehicle Limited Warranty
10-year/100,000-mile Powertrain Limited Warranty
7-year/100,000-mile Anti-Corrosion Perforation Limited Warranty
5-year/ Unlimited mile Roadside Limited Warranty

Durhl Caussey writes a car column read around the world. He may be reached at this email or dcaussey@sbcglobal.net.