2009 Audi A4 Avant vs. 2010 Mitsubishi Outlander for Fave Rush-Hour Ride
December 16, 2010
As much as I love living in L.A. I detest its omnipresent traffic. So whenever I have an event to go to across town, I always make sure to pick a long-term car that will make that stressful situation a bit more bearable. And out of the cars in our current fleet, I'd have to say that our Mitsubishi Outlander (the big one) is my favorite for these reasons: 1) Seat heaters, 2) paddle shifters, 3) Sirius First Wave.
And yes, our 2009 Audi A4 Avant has all of those, too. By the way, I realize that most people wouldn't cross-shop these. (The A4 is a $27K wagon while the Outlander is a $20K crossover SUV.) These are just my picks out of the variety of cars in our fleet for the particular purpose of dealing with rush-hour traffic.
Anyway, the reason the A4 comes in 2nd for me is that even though it has really excellent steering, its paddle shifters aren't as responsive as the Mitsu's. Most folks may appreciate the A4's refined, smooth shifting and call me crazy for liking the Outlander's loud and rough downshifts. But downshifting slows the car down quicker compared to the A4 so I'm more apt to use it than the Audi's during stop-and-go traffic.
With the A4, I have a minor panic attack as I quickly downshift to slow down, while the Mitsu instantly drops in speed.
But other than that, I love them both for making that hectic daily L.A. ritual a bit less aggravating. Just fire up the seat heaters, turn up The Cure and sit back and relax.
Caroline Pardilla, Deputy Managing Editor