SOHC, 4 valves per cylinder, variable intake + exhaust-valve timing
Compression ration (x:1)
Horsepower (hp @ rpm)
166 @ 6,000
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm)
162 @ 4,200
Continuously variable with Sport mode
Transmission and axle ratios (x:1)
It's not very quick and the continuously variable transmission (CVT) doesn't help matters. But the four-cylinder engine isn't all that loud or thrashy. In regular Drive transmisison mode it performs fake "shifts" instead of winding all the way out to 6,000 rpm. The "Ds" transmission mode proved quicker, though, doing without the "shifts" and just bringing the revs (albeit slowly) up to 6,000 rpm, then holding them there for the remainder of the quarter-mile. It gets off the line with some initial quickness thanks to an abrupt throttle, then lags for a bit, then picks up steam again with a 4,000-rpm power spike, then gets hung up again around 5,500 rpm before continuing to 6,000 rpm.
Very squishy pedal, especially the first stopping run. That lessened somewhat on later runs, but a level of sponginess remained throughout. The Outlander also exhibits considerable nosedive thanks to its soft suspension. Despite all this, it stopped without any side-to-side wiggle, and the shortest stop (the first one) was an acceptable distance, at 121 feet. The fourth stop was the longest at 127 feet. We experienced a longer pedal travel on the fifth and final stop, indicating some pedal fade.
Slalom: Soft suspension with plenty of body roll/lean as you venture around each cone. The steering has reasonably good precision and reacts intuitively to driver inputs. The stability control system is way over-reactive, though, so if you get aggressive at all with your turns it adds a lot of brakes to the equation, slowing and ruining the run. Because of this intrusive ESC, the best way was with a slow-in, slightly less slow out approach. Skid pad: As you'd expect of a chassis with minimal roll/lean control, the Outlander gets quite a bit of understeer during steady-state cornering. Much less expected is that it's actually responsive if you play with the gas pedal, adding power in, then dialing it back out to control how much the front tires "push" or lose/gain grip. It's fun, and you can even get the tail to step out a bit with ESC turned off.