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2015 Mitsubishi Outlander

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 3/13/2015

New for 2015

The 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander gains a revised exterior, improved sound insulation and suspension tuning, recalibrated continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT), and standard Fuse Hands-Free Link System with USB Port and Bluetooth. EX models now come with new fabric upholstery with contrast stitching, while SE and GT variants get a new leatherette/fabric upholstery combination. The SE trim now comes with black roof rails with the Premium or Touring package. GT models get new-design 18-inch wheels, LED taillights, and silver roof rails with the Premium or Touring package.

Research

Vehicle Summary

The 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander is a three-row crossover available in front- or all-wheel-drive configurations. Along with the Nissan Rogue, it is one of two compact crossovers that offer seating for up to seven passengers. A smaller two-row crossover, called the Outlander Sport, is sold alongside the Outlander.

Overview

Two engines are available in the 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander: a 2.4-liter I-4 with 166 hp and 162 lb-ft of torque paired to a CVT, and a 3.0-liter V-6 rated at 224 hp and 215 lb-ft mated to a six-speed automatic. Fuel economy is decent at 25/31 mpg city/highway in front-drive guise and 24/29 mpg with all-wheel drive; V-6-equipped Outlanders achieve 20/28 mpg.

Performance isn’t a strong suit of the 2015 Outlander; both engines lag behind competitors in terms of horsepower and torque. I-4 models have sluggish acceleration off the line but are able to maintain highway speeds without a problem. The V-6 is merely adequate for a six-cylinder crossover, struggling when climbing grades due to the automatic’s inability to “stick with the right gear.”

The 2015 Outlander’s interior is nice place to be, with plenty of soft-touch materials in door panels and the dash. Room for passengers is good in the first and second rows but the third should only be reserved for short trips or for children since it’s far from comfortable back there. The infotainment system received a big upgrade during the car’s redesign for the 2014 model year, and is now one of the best with a clear seven-inch touchscreen. However, the available navigation system is slow to respond and “takes time to recalculate routes.” Cargo room is competitive for the class with up to 63.3 cubic feet of volume with the rear seats folded down.

Depending on the drivetrain configuration, the 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander has a four- or five-star overall safety rating from the NHTSA (out of a possible five stars). In IIHS testing a 2014 model earned a Top Safety Pick+ award, scoring good on all categories (good is the highest possible score). Active safety technologies include forward collision mitigation, adaptive cruise control and lane departure warning.

What We Think

While the 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander lags behind when it comes to powertrains, it remains a good choice as a family crossover with a comfortable interior and all-weather capability thanks to its available all-wheel-drive system.

In our long-term verdict review of a 2014 model, we said the car’s cabin is “comfortable and easy to settle into” for long drives and that center stack controls were “easily accessible and well-laid-out.” The second row was roomy enough to accommodate three passengers of average size while the third row is “best used for kids or your contortionist friends.” However, the crossover’s powertrains let it down since they lag behind the competition in terms of horsepower and torque.

You’ll Like

  • Fuel-efficient
  • Available all-wheel drive
  • Comfortable interior

You Won’t Like

  • Underpowered engines
  • Tight third seats
  • Slow-reacting navigation system

Key Competitors

  • Honda CR-V
  • Kia Sorento
  • Dodge Journey
  • Nissan Rogue

Rating

2 star

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