Katie and I had the opportunity to test drive the 2013 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport for a week. The first thing I noticed was the stylish design of the car, and the keyless ignition. I love not having to take the keys out of your pocket. It makes it nearly impossible that you’ll lock your keys in the car. By car I mean compact SUV. It is a lot roomier than it looks.
After you start driving the Outlander Sport I could immediately notice the smooth feel of the car on the road. Maybe it is because of my driving style, but I notice how cars seem to grip the road and hug a turn. The Outlander Sport has a sport feel to the way it looks and handles. I like it when a car doesn’t feel too much like a boat that is floating along the road. I like to feel connected to the road.
Unfortunately, I feel obligated to try to conserve gas, both for my pocket book and for the environment. The Outlander Sport has an ECO mode that helps reduce fuel consumption. Additionally, in front of the driver, right by the speedometer, is a digital screen that tells you your current gas consumption rate in mpg, and the average mpg of your recent driving. I watch this a lot. It helps me better understand how to best drive to get good gas mileage. Another feature that makes using less gas easier are the easy to use cruise control buttons on the steering wheel. During my hour long commutes to class that I did twice in this car I got about 30 mpg on the highway. Obviously, the city driving parts pulled down my average. Plus, the Outlander Sport will tell you how far you can drive with amount of gas you have and the average miles-per-gallon you are current driving.
On the steering wheel are the buttons for the cruise control, XM radio buttons, Bluetooth phone buttons, and a couple of buttons to change the digital screen by the speedometer. Having all of these buttons easily accessible makes the whole driving experience safer and simpler. Another feature that I wish I had on my own car is the seemingly automatically adjusting rear view mirror that makes it easy see behind you during the day and at night without any adjustments.
The onboard GPS automatically darkens when the sun goes down to keep your eyes adjusted to night time conditions. The center touchscreen works as your satellite radio, environment controls display, navigation, and maintenance history display. I find it tedious to always have to reach all the way over to the glove box to record when the oil was changed or when the tires were rotated. By recording it in the Outlander Sport you don’t have to rifle through old car maintenance records and other things that seem to accumulate in a glove box. The center touchscreen also displays the area behind the Outlander Sport while the car is in reverse. I am usually comfortable driving most cars. However, my wife Katie can be very stressed about driving. Features like the rear view camera help here to feel much more confident and comfortable driving. It is one more tool to help you feel safe and in control.
There are a lot of features in the Outlander Sport that make the driving experience easier and more enjoyable. The last one I would like to specifically mention is the very large sunroof. If you get a chance to drive this car on a clear night just pull over somewhere where you can recline your seat and open up the sunroof to the stars. The panoramic sunroof allows you to get a nice wide view of the stars above.