2011 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport SE AWC: Shape of the Future
January 05, 2011
This is the shape of the future.
Small crossovers powered by four-cylinder engines don't get much respect. They are cheap and cheerful utility vehicles, and sometimes more crappy than cheerful. Beneath them you find architecture from small compact cars, like the Honda Civic (CR-V), Hyundai Elantra (Tuscon) and Volkswagen Golf (Tiguan). Underneath the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport you'll find a Mitsubishi Lancer.
But gas prices are starting to climb. Toyota predicts $4 per gallon this year and the former president of Shell Oil is talking about $5 per gallon by next year. And that means fuel-efficient four-cylinder engines will start to look pretty good, even in crossovers.
Vehicles like the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport will be getting respect and we'll all talk about the Dodge Caliber and Honda Element being futuristic vehicles, misunderstood and introduced ahead of their time.
The Outlander Sport seems like a pretty good one of these crossovers with a four-cylinder engine. But one thing to think about is the fact that this Sport SE AWCcarries a price tag of $28,018. We've driven a base model Outlander Sport ES priced at $18,495 and the experience was not cheerful even if it was cheap.
That's the trouble with the shape of the future. It'll be less expensive to run, but it won't really be much cheaper to buy. If you want the nice stuff, you'll still have to pay.
Michael Jordan, Executive Editor, Edmunds.com @ 3,395 miles