Mitsubishi has eliminated several once-popular vehicles from its inventory, devoting a primary focus on maintaining a competitive position with the Outlander and Outlander Sport.
All Outlanders fall into the premium compact SUV category, and the 2018 family of Outlanders steps up to a higher level of sophistication, with better quality, improved driving dynamics, technological advancements, and more efficient operation.
The Outlander Sport is Mitsubishi's top-selling model, offering both reliability and affordability. The 2018 models arrive with new exterior and interior enhancements, and the addition of a new optional Touring Package. The 2018 model serves up a new exterior look with an innovative front and rear bumper design and LED running lights, while the interior receives a 7-inch Smartphone Link display audio system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a newly designed floor console, and a new shift lever.
The Outlander Sport is available with two engines, two transmissions, and two drive configurations, and is offered in ES, SE, LE, and SEL trim levels.
ES and LE models are available in front-wheel drive or with All Wheel Control (Mitsubishi's version of all-wheel drive), powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine connected to a standard five-speed manual gearbox or optional Sportronic CVT featuring paddle shifters. The 2.0-liter produces 148 horsepower and 145 lb.-ft. of torque.
The SE and SEL models are also available in either drive configuration, but are powered by a 2.4-liter four-cylinder that makes 168 ponies while developing 167 lb.-ft. of torque paired with the CVT Sportronic automatic transmission.
All trims come with FWD as the standard drive configuration, with Mitsubishi's electronically controlled All-Wheel Control (AWC) system optionally available. The AWC system provides four operational modes for optimization of driving efficiency: AWC ECO, Normal, Snow and Lock.
My test 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport was in SEL trim with All Wheel Control, powered by the 2.4-liter engine geared through the CVT Sportronic automatic. The base sticker was set at $25,895.
The Outlander Sport is a visually appealing and sporty crossover SUV with enhanced styling and design elements. My SEL version featured a lengthy list of standard features and equipment, with more than enough power to accomplish virtually any assigned task, delivering plenty of zip off the line. Shifting gears could be accomplished automatically or via magnesium steering-wheel-mounted paddles.
The Outlander Sport manages to blend pleasing driving dynamics with rugged good looks, functionality, and versatility. It's not only comfortable, but agile as well.
Four-wheel-drive versions may be operated "on-the-fly" via a simple control knob. The folding and reconfiguration of seating has been greatly simplified for optimum user friendliness. The 60/40-split second row folds flat.
Fortunately, the Outlander Sport is attainable for a wide range of consumers thanks to its broad price range across the model lineup, starting at $. The available optional features are also reasonably priced, allowing consumers to personally equip their selected Outlander Sport model to best fulfill their requirements and desires.
Should you happen to feel the need for a larger crossover, the Outlander delivers more features in a bigger, yet still quite manageable package.
Mitsubishi also comes with a generous warranty program, so if you're shopping for a premium compact crossover, the Outlander Sport is definitely worthy of serious consideration.
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