The 2023 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport comes standard with an elegant cabin with a comfortable ride. While the Outlander is essentially a three-row version of the Nissan Rogue, its tightly-packed rearmost seats are mostly there as decoration as they provide little to no legroom for adults.
The smaller two-row Outlander Sport is reviewed separately. The Outlander’s power comes from a 181-hp four-cylinder, and a CVT with front-wheel drive is standard; all-wheel drive is optional.
A plug-in hybrid is also available and makes a combined 248 horsepower from an all-wheel drive powertrain that consists of a 2.4-liter four-cylinder and two electric motors.
Engine & Performance
The Outlander’s standard engine is a 2.5-liter inline-four-cylinder engine that makes 181 horsepower and 181 pound-feet of torque. It pairs exclusively with a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT), just like in most Mitsubishi models.
Front-wheel drive is the standard configuration, but all-wheel drive is optional. Although the Outlander’s acceleration times are competitive with other compact crossovers, it feels less responsive and lazier at highway speeds, which is exacerbated by its gearless CVT.
Otherwise, the Outlander drives with agility and composure. Its steering is nicely weighted, its body motions are controlled, and its ride is taut. The plug-in hybrid model is more powerful and we estimate it will deliver slightly brisker acceleration.
The all-wheel-drive Outlander earns an EPA-rated 24 mpg city and 30 highway. Front-wheel drive Outlanders see a marginal improvement of 24 city and 31 mpg on the highway.
During our 75-mph highway fuel-economy route, the all-wheel-drive Mitsubishi’s real-world result of 26 mpg fell short of its EPA estimate.
The Outlander is rated for 25 mpg city and 27 mpg highway when using gasoline, but by the government’s yardstick, it’s good for 64 MPGe (electric driving range).
The new Outlander has significantly nicer cabin materials compared with its predecessor, which was marred by subpar plastics and chintzy trim pieces.
Not only are the interior accents and surfaces of higher quality, but the design finally qualifies as modern. Likewise, there’s an assortment of contemporary content that includes an available 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster and a head-up display.
While passengers in the first two rows enjoy more hip room and legroom than in the last-gen Outlander, its third row has very limited legroom for adults.
The only other compact crossover with seating for seven is the Volkswagen Tiguan, but, unlike the Outlander, its extra set of seats is limited to front-drive models. Cargo space also increases on the new Outlander, with 1 cubic foot added to the total volume behind the second and third rows.
Safety & Driver-Assistance Features
Available with driver-assistance technology that includes adaptive cruise control and a semi-autonomous drive mode, the 2023 Outlander boasts a compelling set of tech.
Some key safety features include – forward-collision warning, automated emergency braking, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, lane-departure warning, and lane-keeping assist.
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