November 08, 2011
I recently received an e-mail from Mitsubishi trumpeting the fact that overall calendar year to date (meaning January through October in this case) sales for the brand are up 51 percent over last year. It also stated that the Outlander Sport had "another strong showing" with 1,286 units sold for October.
Not sure what Mitsu's definition of strong is, but for October Kia sold 3,519 Sportages and Hyundai sold 3,777 Tucsons. Given their size, price points and sporty chassis tuning, those Korean cousins are the Outlander Sport's most direct competitors. Maybe if Mitsubishi gave the Sport a less lackadaisical powertrain, sales would be even "stronger".
Still, as many of us have said, working the shift paddles puts some spring in its step and it's a good city runabout given its small footprint and handy rearview camera. In unrelated news, I dig the front end styling and think it's especially sharp in this dark red shade.
John DiPietro, Automotive Editor @ 18,185 miles
November 01, 2011
Bruce Canepa was a guy I used to read about in car magazines. Bigger than life. I was kid in New Jersey. He was a big time Porsche racer.
Thirty something years later I know Bruce personally. We've hung out at the Goodwood Festival of Speed and we have more mutual friends and aquaintances than I can count. Is he a friend of mine? Not even close. But we're not strangers either.
The last time I spoke to Bruce I admitted that I had never been to his store Canepa Design in Scotts Valley, CA, which is near San Jose. Instead I just drool over his inventory online and in his car mag ads. He, of course, said to come up and check it out. That he would personally give me the VIP tour.
October 25, 2011
I'm into roadside distractions. The wierder the better. I once drove four hours out of the way to visit Billy the Kid's grave.
This one isn't quite that dramatic, but a couple of weeks ago on Highway 1 in North Monterey, CA my dad and I stumbled upon J&S's Eagle Iron and Leather Shop and its enormous handcrafted motorcycles.
The rusted one with the red wheels is powered by a Ford V6 and looks like it may have been rideable once. The one covered in license plates was also V6 powered, but it was hard to see if the engine is also a Ford or something else. Both are chain driven.
Glad we stopped. Check it out if you're ever in the area.
October 24, 2011
Last week I posted about taking my kids to the beach in our long-term 2011 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport. I failed to mention that we also stopped at the 9/11 Memorial at the Manhattan Beach fire house. If you're in the area you should check it out. Those two rusted steel posts are actually girders from the World Trade Center.
It's one of those places where you whisper out of respect.
October 17, 2011
Since last Wednesday I've driven our long-term 2011 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport nearly 1000 miles, including a a 650 mile all-California road trip from Santa Monica to Monterey and back.
I'm still a fan of this little crossover. It was quiet enough out on the highway, its seats were comfortable, its sat nav, sat radio and air conditioning kept my dad and I happy, and it had plenty of range. It was also very easy to park.
The only disappointment was the Mitsu's fuel economy. On the way up we averaged 25 mpg. On the way home I pushed a bit harder and we averaged just 22.7. EPA rates the Outlander Sport at 29 mpg hwy.
Then again, nobody ever accussed me of being a hypermiler.
Scott Oldham, Editor in Chief @ 15,496 miles
October 14, 2011
We've passed the 15,000-mile mark on our Mitsubishi Outlander Sport.
Our goal is usually 20,000 miles in one year. Our one-year anniversary with the Outlander Sport is at the end of November. So, we have about 5 weeks left to put 5,000 miles this SUV. That's 1,000 miles per week.
Do you think we can do it?
Scott Oldham, Editor in Chief
August 19, 2011
The Outlander Sport doesn't look too bad from this angle, at least compared to our Nissan Juke.
That's because the Outlander gives up 21.7 cubic feet of cargo capacity. That's less than rivals like the Kia Sportage, but more than the Juke's paltry 10.5 cubic feet. So the Juke may be loads more fun to drive but at least the Mitsu can claim victory in one area.
The Outlander Sport's cargo area also features some close-to-the-floor local illumination, which can help give you the lay of the land back there after dark.
June 17, 2011
We have a 2011 Hyundai Tuscon in our garage for a few days for testing. Beneath the skin, the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport is the same. Same size, same platform, same engine and transmission, same interior architecture and space. There are plenty of mechanical differences, of course, but the way the equation comes together is so similar that I can't see any distinction between them.
There's not much you can do to style vehicles that are so short and tall, and both the Outlander Sport and the Tuscon show evidence of what happens when the designers try too hard. The Hyundai guys have applied their current design themes as best they can, but the result looks as if a potato had been attacked with a paring knife. I'll take the Walter da'Silva-autograph, overstated full-frame grille on the Mitsubishi.
June 08, 2011
Have you seen this one yet? Mitsubishi Motors have followed up their "Most Inane World Records in 24 Hours" ad with this more compelling "World's Most Dangerous Road" ad that they shot on Yungas Road in Bolivia.
This single-lane width road is also known as "Bolivia's Road of Death."
The dropoffs here (up to 2000 ft) make those in Malibu Canyon seem like street curbs.
One estimate is that 200 to 300 travellers are killed annually on this road. Gulp.
Albert Austria, Senior VE Engineer @ 9,090 miles
June 07, 2011
Friend of mine asked about a compact ute for his kid and said he was thinking about the Honda CR-V. I suggested the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport as well and said that maybe it gives you a little more for your money.
This is quite a comeback for a vehicle that we dissed so comprehensively when it first arrived. After nearly 10,000 miles, we're actually liking the Outlander Sport.
Whether the Outlander Sport is really as good as a CR-V is a big subject, yet even to suggest that a Mitsubishi and Honda belong in the same sentence together is a pretty radical thought. It kind of tells me a couple of things.
First, Honda is still the standard of reference in so many categories -- the vehicle that frames the discussion and begins any comparison.
But something has also happened to Honda that makes all of us think other vehicles might be more compelling choices. We talk about what it is, but we can't quite pin it down.
Michael Jordan, Executive Editor, Edmunds.com @ 9,800 miles.
May 25, 2011
It's not like I'm some fog light fetishist or anything, but I found my attention drawn to the interesting pair on our Outlander Sport.
Fog lights are usually pretty mundane, but the Outlander's are dressed up with accents that make them look a bit dangerous, like they're peering out from the barrels of ornate guns.
April 21, 2011
Here on the Westside of L.A., space in general and parking spots in particular are at a premium. Many strip plazas have these sub-standard-sized "compact" spots that are rather short and narrow. The Outlander Sport, with its Pug nose and clipped rear end, is perfect for these environs with its genuinely compact dimensions. Its size and the available rearview camera take a lot of the hassle out of parking in these "pack-em-in" parking lots.
John DiPietro, Automotive Editor @ 7,140 miles.
March 25, 2011
Last night, there wasn't much sport to my life. Our long-term 2011 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport and I went to Trader Joe's in the rain; then, we drove 25 miles out to the San Gabriel Valley in a downpour. I turned the dial on the Outlander Sport's console from 2WD to 4WD (because I felt like it), but it was slick out there, no matter what your tires or drive wheels. On the way home, I drove by a nice new E92 coupe that had just been punted into the wall on the East LA interchange. Too bad, guy.
On this night, though, the Outlander Sport perfectly satisfied my transportation requirements.
You've likely gotten the impression that our Outlander Sport doesn't really have an engine under-hood. This is sadly true. This 148-hp 2.0-liter is a slightly lower-power version of the engine we had in our old long-term 2008 Lancer GTS, which was maybe 100 pounds lighter and equally slow. Except that we had a nice five-speed manual gearbox to keep us occupied in the Lancer, instead of the Sport's fun-killing CVT. (You can get a manual if you order a base O'Sport ES.)
Never mind that, though, because last night I was all about steeaaddy-as-she-goes acceleration up to 65 mph, and the O'Sport does that just fine. Meanwhile, various V6 Camrys around me were flooring it, scaring themselves, then slamming on the brakes. Also, as a bonus, I couldn't really hear the usual engine racket from the Mitsu's 2.0-liter over the rain and my public radio.
Visibility was good, as the Outlander Sport has HID low-beams, foglights and rain-sensing wipers. I hadn't realized it had the auto wipers before I set, but it started taking care of me in that regard as soon as I started the engine.
I also like the O'Sport's ride, which is very similar to Outlander Sr., as it offers reasonable comfort and good control over expansion joints and bumps. The electric-assist power steering is well calibrated, too. There's a steady, secure feel on center, with pretty natural effort levels off center and good precision.
Mind you, there are plenty of vehicles out there that could have provided the same experience last night, but I happened to be in the Outlander Sport and it happened to be a fairly pleasant experience.
Erin Riches, Senior Editor @ 6,207 miles
March 07, 2011
Right after I closed the hatch to our Outlander Sport, this beauty pulled up next to me. Sorry for the crappy picture, but I was shooting into the sun with a weak point-n-shoot.
The owner noticed me gawking at his Rover so we chatted for a few minutes. Dave told me that he's owned it for 10 years. It's a '97 automatic with 75k miles on it. Hardtop, too. Sexy.
I ask a question, to quote the Black Sheep: You can get with this, or you can get with that. Which would you choose?
Scott Jacobs, Sr. Mgr. Photography
February 08, 2011
Doesn't the back of the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport look like it's been smushed? As if it used to have a bigger caboose, but was somehow melted to the softness of clay and then slowly run into by a cab-over big rig? You know, these benchmarks of aerodynamic efficiency? The O Sport's proportions just seem a bit off.
Actually, the back of it sort of reminds me of Apple Cat, the weirdo peke-faced kitty owned by Takahashi's girlfriend who reduces everyone who sees it to giggle. Well, maybe just me to giggle. It reduces Magrath to putting pictures of it on his Facebook. You'll see what I mean after the jump.
James Riswick, Automotive Editor @ 4,619 miles
Follow me on the Twitter @JRiswick
February 01, 2011
See that? That's our Mitsubishi Outlander Sport's alloy fuel cap. It's part of a $995 Exterior Sport Package that includes a rear spoiler, front corner extensions, rear diffuser garnish and front chrome lower garnish.
All that other stuff in the Sport Package is great, but for some reason, the fuel cap is the feature among these that caught my eye. The cap has an industrial look that strikes me as being quite modern. It looks like it belongs in an expensive downtown loft with exposed brick walls and polished concrete floors.
I don't see alloy fuel caps too often. What do you think of 'em? Thumbs up or thumbs down?
Warren Clarke, Automotive Content Editor
January 28, 2011
I washed a lot of cars when I was a kid. And I've always taken pride in cleaning every nook, especially behind the fuel door. When you take your 2011 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport to a quickie handwash that sort of thing doesn't always happen.
See those suds? Below them is a pool of water about a half-inch deep. Maybe I'm crazy, but this kind of thing gets under my skin. I had to dry it up on the spot. So let's hear it. What are your car cleanliness pet peeves?
Mike Schmidt, Vehicle Testing Manager @ 4,240 miles
December 27, 2010
Mitsubishi's November sales were up 47 percent relative to November 2009 and the company says that much of the credit goes to the Outlander Sport.
"The excitement of our sales team and dealer partners for the new Outlander Sport was contagious, because customers responded in a big way," said Mitsubishi Motors North America President & CEO Shin Kurihara. "And the showroom traffic translated into increases for Outlander and some of our other vehicles, as well."
Some of Mitsubishi's November sales highlights follow after the jump, in case you're interested.
-Outlander sales were up 64 percent and are up more than 23 percent for the year to date.
-Endeavor sales nearly quadrupled compared to last year (up 329 percent) and are up more than 34 percent for the year.
-Galant sales were up almost 4 percent compared to last November, and are up 6.6 percent year-to-date.
-Lancer Evolution sales were up more than 46 percent for the month.
-Mitsubishi sales have increased 2.4 percent year-to-date.
Warren Clarke, Automotive Content Editor
December 21, 2010
I knew the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport had a flat face, but it really caught my attention when I saw its pug-nose shadow in the parking lot.
Kelly Toepke, News Editor