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More Than Good Enough

Edmunds.com logo Edmunds.com 6/15/2016 John

We have been 'watching' the Outlander Sport for several years. We finally bought a 2016 Outlander Sport ES to replace our 2005 Mazda Tribute i. The Outlander Sport is a much nicer vehicle and we paid less for it than we paid for the Tribute in 2005. Why would we buy a vehicle that rates an 'a rare Edmunds "D" rating'? Lets count the reasons:1. Safety - The Outlander Sport has 'Good' IIHS crash ratings except for an 'Acceptable' Front Small Overlap rating. The old Mazda received a 'Poor' side crash rating. Many newer vehicles do not pass the Front Small Overlap test. 2. Reliability - 2015 CR states that the Outlander Sport has excellent reliability. Models built from 2012-2015 were made in Illinios. 2016 models sold in this country are made in Japan once again.3. Features - Comes standard with everything. You won't need to upgrade or get an option package for Cruise Control which seems to be very common for vehicles in this price range. Love the usb port, heated side mirrors, rear center arm rest with cup holders, easy fold split rear seat and the Hill Start Assist feature; again all standard.4. Performance - According to Edmunds 0-60 in 8.8 seconds(2011 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport Road Test), 60-0 in 119 feet. Reported best gas mileage to be 29-32 without trying too hard. Comfortable seats and yes it does have a telescoping, leather wrapped steering wheel standard. It rides better than the Mazda did and it is quieter too. You can hear the engine during hard acceleration but it quiets down while cruising. We don't have any issues with how it handles. Perhaps it is not 'Sporty' but even CR gave it a good (1/2 red dot) Routine Handling rating. It has the nicest interior of any vehicle we have ever owned. Maybe it is true that 'the rate at which vehicles have been improving is staggering' but so has their price. The Honda HR-V and Mazda CX-3 must be fantastic vehicles if they are really that much better than the Outlander Sport. The problem is that for the price we actually paid for the Outlander Sport, they are not competing against each other. In fact for the price we paid there are very few new vehicles to consider and the Outlander Sport beats them easily. If you are looking for a vehicle capable of handling four tall adults and their stuff there are very few choices in this price range.If you are the type of person who replaces their vehicle as often as their iPhone then the Outlander Sport is probable not for you. But if you are like many Americans who agonize over every dollar spent you need to at least consider the Outlander Sport. Compare it to the one you are currently driving not to one that will put you in debt forever.--------------------------------------------- Update -----------------------------------We took our Outlander Sport on a trip. We started where the speed limit was 65 MPH. It then turned to 70, then 75 and finally 80 MPH. It made little difference, many drivers always go 10-15 mph above the limit. At least the semis seem to stay in the 65-70 MPH range. We cruised at 75 MPH for a couple of days including mountain passes. We then went up twisty switchbacks to 11,000 ft to get to a cabin. The Outlander Sport did well. Noise was something of a problem on certain sections of the highway while on other pavement it was very pleasant. When the time comes we might try some different tires (Michelin Defenders) to see if that helps. The Outlander Sport rode well. I detected a little 'float' while driving around a bumpy corner once but no one else in the vehicle noticed anything. After 6000 miles our best gas mileage was 34 MPG, our worst was 27 MPG. Overall we are very pleased with our Outlander Sport. It isn't a Toyota Camry on the interstate but then again I wouldn't want to take a Camry on some of the dirt roads we ended up on. One improvement we made to our base model was to add tweeters to our front speakers. The wiring and everything is already there so it was pretty easy to do and really added to the overall sound quality.

Average Rating : 5

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