Test Drive Notes Library
- Like its ancestor, Ray’s beloved Dodge Colt Vista, the Outlander has three rows of seats, and can carry up to seven passengers, making it a practical hauler for families.
- Kids can sit comfortably in the two back seats, as can adults—briefly, anyway— as long as they not in the 95 percentile for height in their fourth grade class. Anyone taller than Peter Dinklage, however, will find their knees up around their chins.
- The Outlander’s a good-sized vehicle with lots of hauling capacity. When the third row of seats isn’t being used, the seats fold flat, which makes for even more cargo room.
- Pretty good driving position. All the controls were straightforward, easy to understand and use. It had a pretty old fashioned simplicity.
- For what it is-- a mini-van-like SUV-- the handling was not bad.
- The road noise is about equal to that of a Honda CRV—middle of the pack.
- We drove both the V6 and four-cylinder engine, and preferred the 2.4-liter, 4-cylinder that’s in the ES and SE trim levels. The engine is amazingly quiet—much more so than the GT’s V6 engine. It’s got enough power to climb hills and pass on the highway. And, there’s plenty of room under the hood—which means cheaper repair bills, when that day arrives.
Test Drive Notes Library
- Mitsubishi seems to always be teetering on the edge of going out of business in the United States. Denials to the contrary, they sell so few vehicles here, that it wouldn’t surprise us if they decide to pull out. Mitsubishi dealers are already few and far between, and if those dealerships disappear, it’ll be even harder to get good service down the road. Resale value will also plummet.
- This would have been an amazing vehicle in 2005, but it feels a generation behind in handling and interior quality, with hard plastics that you see less and less of these days.
- The 2.4-liter SE version came in at $26,200 MSRP, compared to $26,000 for a roughly equivalent Honda CR-V. So, would the Outlander stack up against a CR-V? At first, in some ways, yes. But after 100,000 or 250,000 miles? Probably not.
- The Outlander’s most obvious competitors have very high resale value. Will the Outlander hold onto its value as well? We doubt that, too. There’s going to be a huge trade-in differential. So, unless you’re really hankering for that third row of seats, we’d suggest opting for the CR-V, RAV4, or Forrester.
- The V6 is overkill, and it’s stuffed into the engine compartment—so when the Outlander starts to get six figures on the odometer, be prepared to the open up your wallet. To make matters worse, we’d expect the engine and transmission to be only average in terms of reliability.
- This would be a perfectly acceptable vehicle if you could get it for a fire sale price. So compare it to the CR-V, RAV4, and Forrester, and if you can save several thousand bucks (that you don’t have to spend), consider the Outlander.
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