Car Review: 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport

2015 Outlander Sport SE

For the 2015 model year Mitsubishi has updated its perennial best-seller with some aesthetic changes and engineering improvements to this sporty compact crossover. I tested the SE model with all-wheel drive for a week and came away impressed with what the vehicle offered for the price.


The 2015 Outlander gets new, stylish-looking LED running lights in the SE model but otherwise the exterior design remains unchanged, which isn’t a bad thing as the Outlander’s exterior works for a sporty but practical crossover. I like the front end and the vehicle looks great from every angle. The Ruby Red version we tested looked particularly sharp, and I like it in the other offered colors including the blue model pictured here. It has the type of look that should be appealing across a wide variety of consumer groups as the designers haven’t tried to get too cute with any aspect of the design.

2015 Outlander Sport SE


The interior is roomy with comfortable seats and I liked the styling with the black interior. Again, they’re not breaking new ground with the styling but it all comes together nicely. New features for 2015 include new thicker front door window glass for improved sound insulation, new next-generation fuel-saving Electric Power Steering and new rear quarter panel sound insulation for reduced road noise. The gauges and controls are all easy to use, though the cargo space in the Outlander is less than what you’ll find with many other compact crossovers. The Outlander provides 21.7 cubic feet of cargo space and then 49.5 cubic feet when the 60/40-split rear seats are folded down.


I was surprised at how smooth the ride was in the Outlander, making it very comfortable for both city driving and longer trips. Still, I would prefer more power than the Outlander delivers with the 148 horsepower engine. The 2015 model also features a next-generation continuously-variable transmission that now mimics a 7-speed automatic transmission. Overall it was pretty nimble and fun to drive though I didn’t get the chance to test it in the snow.

The new CVT does bring some fuel economy improvements, as those models coupled with front-wheel drive deliver EPA fuel economy estimates of 28 mpg combined (25 city/32 highway), while the all-wheel-drive versions earn 27 mpg combined (24/30). It’s also rated as an Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) “Top Safety Pick” for 2014.


If you’re looking for a compact crossover with sporty styling and all-wheel drive functionality, you’ll find good value with the Outlander Sport. It’s not a surprise that the Outlander is the brand’s top-selling model. The SE model with all-wheel drive has an MSRP of $29,945 including destination charges which makes it very affordable. It’s a practical vehicle with nice styling that should get a serious look from consumers in this segment.