2012 Mitsubishi Outlander Review
The 2012 Mitsubishi Outlander has sportier handling than most other affordable midsize SUVs, but most reviewers agree that it's outclassed by most rivals.
The 2012 Mitsubishi Outlander perches on the fence between compact SUVs and midsize SUVs. While that might mean the Outlander will be shopped by more people, it also means it’s up against twice as many rivals, and both classes are filled with SUVs that trump it.
The Mitsubishi Outlander may provide fun-to-drive handling and a long warranty, but it’s outshone by rivals in most other areas. Reviewers don’t like its bargain-basement interior, and they say its optional third row is barely fit for children. While its handling is among the best in its class, the power from the 2012 Mitsubishi Outlander’s base four-cylinder engine is pretty dismal, and the optional V6 isn’t much better. The Outlander does get pretty good fuel economy for a midsize SUV from its base engine, but those figures are fairly average when compared with compact SUVs.
Overall, the 2012 Mitsubishi Outlander has a good price and great handling, but if you prioritize power, third-row space or interior quality, you’ll want to look elsewhere.
Other SUVs to Consider
The Mitsubishi Outlander is smaller than most midsize SUVs, so cross-shopping with compact SUVs might help you save some cash. The Toyota RAV4 may be a compact SUV, but it’s a perennial reviewer favorite for its plentiful cargo space, powerful optional V6 engine and optional third row. Keep in mind however, that the RAV4’s third row is only suited for children, just like the Outlander.
The Kia Sorento is another reviewer pick for its long list of standard features and capable engines. Its back seat is a bit larger than the Outlander’s, and it costs more as well. Plus, Kia is one of the only manufacturers that can match Mitsubishi’s excellent warranty. Also, the 2011 Sorento got better crash test scores from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety than the 2012 Outlander did. (The 2012 Sorento hasn’t been tested yet.)
Details: Mitsubishi Outlander
The Outlander comes in three trims: base ES, SE and GT. Front-wheel drive is standard on all models and all-wheel drive is optional. For 2012, the Outlander gains an available auto-dimming rearview mirror with a backup camera and an Eco indicator for more fuel-efficient driving.
See the full list of 2012 Mitsubishi Outlander specifications.
- "There are also a host of other excellent models vying for your attention, including the spacious Chevrolet Equinox, the handsome Kia Sorento and the turbocharged Subaru Forester. Still, the Mitsubishi Outlander stands out on the strength of its striking looks and frisky character; it's a solid pick for those seeking a less mainstream alternative.” -- Edmunds
- "This crossover's virtues include a responsive transmission and flexible cargo accommodations. Among its vices are a raucous engine, subpar interior materials, and the Mitsubishi brand's record of weak resale values. The performance-themed GT model offers an engaging driving experience, albeit at a steep price premium, depending on how many options you select.” -- Consumer Guide