2014 Mitsubishi Outlander GT
A seven-seater that takes it easy on both gas and your wallet.
Web2Carz Contributing Writer
Published: September 5th, 2013
The largest vehicle in Mitsubishi's lineup starts at a hair under $28,000. That alone is impressive, but once you consider it seats seven and gets halfway-decent gas mileage while doing so, it's starting to look very attractive on paper. The good news is that it retains that attractiveness in a real-world setting. The bad news is that not everything translates over.
The 2014 Outlander is all-new for this model year, and we've got to say, every single generation has the Outlander looking better and better. Our tester was the GT model, which shoehorns a 3.0-liter V-6 underhood, in lieu of the standard 2.4-liter four-pot (although the smaller motor drops the price by nearly five grand). That's a good thing, considering acceleration isn't exactly a focal point of the Outlander, and the six does gets going in a relatively snappy fashion without tossing your money into a shredder.
Overall, for somebody who needs the third row of seating at a decent price point, the Outlander does come in cheaper than its rivals, including the Mazda CX-9 and Kia Sorento. It might not be as attractive as the former, or as large as the latter, but its low price helps it fit into a Goldilocks-like spot between its peers. That said, you do get what you pay for.
While the Rockford Fosgate stereo provides for some quality high-volume listening, getting your iPod attached and working can be an exercise in futility. Attempting to plug the iPod in prior to the start of the vehicle will cause it to register as being plugged in about half the time. If you try to plug it in on the move, sometimes it works right away, and other times you have to open your iDevice, click the iPod app, lock the screen, place it on the ground and dance around it in a clockwise fashion, then sacrifice a small woodland creature.
When opting for the GT Touring package, you're provided with a number of stopping-distraction-by-doing-your-job-for-you gizmos, including a Lane Departure Warning that automatically turns on with the car and consistently tells you you're veering out of your lane. Given that most of these systems are built for highway driving, and given that most people don't start their car on a freeway every morning, it should be something you have to turn on, rather than turn off.
Our GT came with the Touring package, which gives it leather seats that are both comfortable and capable of keeping your body pain-free for longer drives. Everything is arranged nicely, and while there's a dearth of soft-touch materials in the cabin, you can't win 'em all for less than $30K. There is a third row, but it's awfully cramped and best suited for children or animals. The third row can be used for cargo room, but the seats don't fold entirely flat, leaving you with a slightly angled floor that makes stowing large, flat items difficult.
The Triple Diamond scores a triple-A in the looks department. It's not an overly chiseled, bro-appeal machine, nor is it some soft, dumpy egg with wheels. Speaking of wheels, the 18-inch alloy wheels look a little undersized, and the thin-ish tire sidewalls don't do much to fill out the gap in the wheel wells. It's delightfully inoffensive, but not in the Toyota way where it blends in completely with its surroundings.
On the Road
While the interior attempts to keep your body comfortable on longer drives, the suspension is doing exactly the opposite. Despite its size, the Outlander is easily unsettled on bumps of varying sizes, and again, the thin tire sidewalls aren't helping that. Make sure you take it slowly after a cold start, because the transmission does like to hiccup around the lower gears at low speeds when not fully warmed up. The fuel economy is pretty good for a V-6, and very easy to achieve as well, especially once the Eco button is pressed.
If ride isn't the biggest priority, you won't have much to complain about on the road. It will get you and up to six other people where you need to go, and it's not impossible to parallel park, which is a boon for city drivers that can't be bothered to get something smaller. Truth be told, given the large capacity and the somewhat small form factor for said capacity, it might be one of the best options for larger urban-based families that want a crossover.
Specs & Price
Engine: 3.0-liter V-6
Transmission: Six-speed automatic
Power Output: 224 hp / 215 lb-ft
Fuel Economy: 20 city / 28 highway
Base Price: $27,795
As Tested: $34,720 (incl. $825 destination charge)
Optional Features: GT Premium Package (Power glass moonroof, leather seating, Rockford Fosgate sound system, power remote tailgate); GT Touring Package (GT Premium Package plus navigation, adaptive cruise control, forward collision system, lane departure warning); Entertainment Package (Rear seat DVD player, remote control); Towing Package (Class 3 hitch, trailer wiring harness); Exterior Package (Rear spoiler, airdams, front styling element); All Weather Package (Remote engine start, all-weather floormats)
• For more information such as specs, prices, and photos of the 2014 Mitsubishi Outlander, click here: 2014 Mitsubishi Outlander.