The Mitsubishi Outlander is a great option for families who need a good bit of space for all all their gear and don’t want to break the bank. With models starting as low as $23,000 and a Top Safety Pick rating from IIHS the appeal of the Outlander is a no-brainer. There’s a lot to love with this modestly sized and modestly priced SUV.
The Outlander we drove was priced at $32,245. It’s a 4 cylinder all wheel control (not to be confused with all wheel drive) with the SEL Touring package.
This package leaves the driver with a fully automatic seat and the passenger with a manual option, no power ports in the second row and few storage compartments. What it does feature is heated side view mirrors, a temporary spare time (just say no to run flats!), leather seating for seven passengers, heated front seats and reclining seats in the second row.
The Outlander has a generous amount of space even with toddler seats and big kid seats. Everyone who has tried manipulating a bunch of mismatched kid seats into a vehicle knows that a few extra inches makes life infinitely easier. My husband is 6’3″ tall and had plenty of legroom as my front row passenger without impinging on the space the kids needed in the second row. My youngest child and I tried out the third row together and managed just fine. As with every midsize SUV the third row (when offered) is not spacious but it’s not out of the question for an average sized adult.
Since the third row headrests need to be removed when you fold down the seats for storage I appreciate that they conveniently store right in a small compartment hidden under a panel in the trunk. There’s a place for everything and everything in it’s place.
There is no mistaking the Outlander’s handing for anything other than a truck. The suspension is stiff and at times felt unresponsive. As much as this didn’t delight me having Hill Start Assist and tire pressure monitors as standard equipment gave me joy.
I’m on the radio. I love music. This truck rocks. The audiophile in me loved the way the sound traveled through the cabin and after I got kids dropped off to school I’d drop the windows, turn up the volume and just enjoy my day with a carefree singalong.
There are Kid Perks to be had too. My four year old son was able to easily get in and out of the third row of the vehicle with a manageable lever that released the second row of seats. For every parent who has ever had to struggle with second and third row seats you know this matters.
This is a handsome vehicle. It’s unfussy exterior takes a nod from the luxury sport utility vehicles. The interior is basic but nice with a clean look. I felt peaceful when I wasn’t busy with my rock and roll singalongs. The gorgeous alloy wheels are probably my favorite esthetic feature and they come standard.
Sadly, there is a deal breaker for me on this particular vehicle. As I live in a hot and dry climate I can’t imagine owning any car that doesn’t have vents for air-conditioning for my rear seat passengers. There were no air conditioning vents in the second or third row, only floor vents for the heater. Additionally the third row windows do not pop open. On more than one occasion my kids told me they were hot and uncomfortable and its not even Summer yet.