2021 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport
Unlike other websites and magazines, our ratings are not based solely on a singular road test, but rather a more encompassing batch of criteria: quality, safety, comfort, performance, fuel economy, reliability history and value. When comparing vehicles using our Rating System, it's important to note that the rating earned by each vehicle correlates only to the models within its class. For example, a compact car cannot be compared to a SUV—They are different vehicles altogether.
You can interpret our ratings in the following way:
5-Star: Outstanding vehicle. Only the most exceptional vehicles achieve this rating.
4-Star: Very Good vehicle. Very good and close to being the best vehicle in its class.
3-Star: Good vehicle. Decent, but not quite the best. Often affordable, but lacking key features found in vehicles of the same class.
2-Star: Below average vehicle. Not recommended, and lacking attributes a car buyer would come to expect for the price.
1-Star: Poor vehicle. Simply does not deserve to be on the road.
2.4 GT 4dr AWC
2021 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport Specs
|Front head room||39 "|
|Rear head room||38 "|
|Front shoulder room||56 "|
|Rear shoulder room||56 "|
|Front hip room||52 "|
|Rear hip room||52 "|
|Front leg room||41.6 "|
|Rear leg room||36.3 "|
|Luggage capacity||21.7 cu.ft.|
|Maximum cargo capacity||49.5 cu.ft.|
|Body width||71.3 "|
|Body height||64.8 "|
|Ground clearance||8.5 "|
|Gross weight||4,343 lbs.|
|Fuel tank capacity||15.8 gal.|
|EPA mileage estimates||23 City / 28 Hwy|
|Base engine size||2.4 liters|
|Base engine type||I-4|
|Turning radius||17.4 ''|
Fees & Taxes
Total Cost to Own
See the cheapest SUVs to Own
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Fair Market Price
With the MotorTrend Fair Market Price (powered by IntelliChoice), get a better idea of what you’ll pay after negotiations including destination, taxes, and fees. The actual transaction price depends on many variables from dealer inventory to bargaining skills, so this figure is an approximation.
|5-Year Cost to Own / Rating|
|$20,995||$23,857||$33,646 / Poor|
|$20,995||$23,857||$33,646 / Poor|
|$22,995||$25,762||$35,640 / Poor|
|$23,995||$26,827||$36,880 / Poor|
|$24,545||$27,413||$37,282 / Poor|
|$24,695||$27,573||$37,423 / Poor|
|$25,195||$28,347||$36,152 / Poor|
|$25,545||$28,478||$38,369 / Poor|
|$26,245||$29,224||$38,989 / Poor|
|$26,745||$30,004||$37,637 / Poor|
|$26,995||$30,022||$39,970 / Poor|
5-Year Cost to Own
- Long warranty
- Responsive infotainment system
- Strong throttle response
- Noisy cabin
- Cheaply built interior
- Rivals are more efficient
Mitsubishi Outlander Sport Expert Review
The Mitsubishi Outlander Sport is one of the oldest subcompact crossovers on the market, having made its debut for the 2011 model year. Mitsubishi has made a few meaningful changes since its introduction, but simply put, the small crossover remains outclassed by its competitors. It needs a thorough update inside and out to compete with top players like the Subaru Crosstrek and Kia Soul.
- Revised trim structure (2.0 models include ES, LE, and SE, with a 2.4 GT model at the top of the range)
- LED foglights, auto headlights, and front rain-sensing wipers are now standard
- New standard safety features including forward collision mitigation with pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, and auto high-beams
The Mitsubishi Outlander Sport provides plenty of power off the line, and good throttle response makes it feel even quicker than its 0-60 mph run of 8.5 seconds would suggest. Unfortunately, the powertrain becomes loud when you hit wide-open throttle while merging or passing other cars. Along with lots of engine noise, too much road and wind noise seeps into the cabin. Combine this with cheap interior materials, and it becomes clear the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport is starting to show its age.
But there are a few things we really appreciate about this subcompact crossover. Although it's nothing fancy, the infotainment system is quick to respond. And Mitsubishi's warranty remains one of the best. The automaker offers a 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty and a 10-year/100,000-mile limited powertrain warranty.
A 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder engine comes standard, producing 148 hp and 145 lb-ft of torque. Upgrade to the top GT trim, and you'll get a 2.4-liter inline four-cylinder engine good for 168 hp and 167 lb-ft. When we tested a 2018 Outlander Sport with this engine, it reached 60 mph in 8.5 seconds, which is a pretty good time for this class.
Fuel economy trails rivals at 24/30 mpg city/highway with the base engine. With AWD, that figure goes down to 23/29 mpg. The 2.4-liter engine gets 23/29 mpg with FWD and 23/28 mpg with AWD.
The 2021 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport gets a four-star overall safety rating from NHTSA. This rating includes four stars in the front crash and rollover tests, and five stars in the side crash test. The 2020 model received Good crash scores in all but the driver's side small overlap front test, which replicates what happens when the front left corner of the car strikes an object at 40 mph.
Standard safety features include forward collision mitigation with pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, and auto high-beams. Blind-spot warning with lane change assist and rear cross-traffic alert is available.
Cargo Space and Interior Room
Legroom in the five-passenger Outlander Sport measures 41.6 inches up front and 36.3 inches in the back of the Outlander Sport. That's comparable to the 2021 Subaru Crosstrek, which has 43.1 inches in the front and 36.5 inches in the rear. Cargo space measures 21.7 cubic feet with the rear seats upright and 49.5 cubic feet with the seats folded, surpassing the Crosstrek's 20.8/55.3-cubic-foot capacity.
Standard tech goodies are pretty basic. A 7.0-inch central screen is included on the base model, as is a four-speaker sound system and a front USB port. An 8.0-inch unit is standard on the rest of the lineup, and it comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
2021 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport ES
Exterior: Heated power side mirrors, rear privacy glass, 18-inch two-tone alloy wheels, roof spoiler
Interior: Fabric seats, 60:40 folding rear seat, carbon-style audio panel
Performance/Convenience: Remote keyless entry, rearview camera, automatic climate control
2021 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport LE
Exterior: Black grille accents, black side mirrors, 18-inch black alloy wheels
Interior: Heated front seats, black fabric seats with red stitching, leather-wrapped steering wheel
Performance/Convenience: SiriusXM All Access compatibility, steering wheel voice recognition control
2021 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport SE
Exterior: Chrome side garnish, side mirrors with turn indicators, power-folding side mirrors
Interior: Dual sun visor vanity mirrors with illumination
Performance/Convenience: Push-button start, six-speaker sound system (instead of four)
2021 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport GT
Exterior: GT badging
Interior: Soft-touch seating surfaces, black headliner and pillars
Performance/Convenience: 2.4-liter engine, auto-dimming rearview mirror with Homelink
- Subaru Crosstrek
- Kia Seltos
- Mazda CX-30
Hp outlander sport
Despite its recently redesigned facade, the 2021 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport is outdated and outmatched versus its classmates. The Mitsubishi subcompact crossover has several driver assists and some infotainment features that give the illusion of modernity, but its aging engines and moldering platform lack refinement. Driving the Outlander Sport isn't satisfying in the slightest and sitting inside its dreary confines does nothing to improve the experience. What's worse is that Mitsubishi charges just over $24,000 for the stripped-down base model, but the beautiful Mazda CX-30 and the cool Hyundai Kona both start at $23,000 or less. Aside from offering handsome styling, all-wheel drive, and an excellent powertrain warranty, there's little to love about the 2021 Outlander Sport—unless shoppers are a huge fan of the brand.
What's New for 2021?
After the previous model year underwent a transformative facelift, the 2021 Outlander Sport receives a handful of new features. All models now have automatic high-beams, forward-collision warning with pedestrian detection, and lane-departure warning. The base model also now has LED fog lights, rain-sensing windshield wipers, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. The LE trim gains black 18-inch wheels, a black grille and door mirrors, and a Limited Edition badge. Inside, the upholstery now has red contrast stitching.
Pricing and Which One to Buy
Saving the most money on an Outlander Sport requires choosing the base model. However, stepping up to the LE trim level unlocks some features that are needed to make this Mitsubishi feel a little more like a new car rather than an old one. The most notable of these is the 8.0-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Other content that comes with the upgrade includes black exterior accents, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and red stitching inside. Shoppers who want all-wheel drive can add it for an extra $1550.
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
The Outlander Sport's powertrain options present a choice between the lesser of two evils. The standard 148-hp 2.0-liter four-cylinder is almost unbearably slow. The more powerful 168-hp 2.4-liter engine is quicker, but it gets worse fuel economy and is reserved for the priciest top-of-the-line GT model. Both engines pair with an unrefined continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). The last Outlander Sport we tested with the 2.4-liter managed an 8.0-second trip to 60 mph, which actually betters several top rivals. While hardly sporty, the Outlander Sport will get you from point A to point B without drama. There's a fair amount of body roll in corners but not so much that it feels unstable or tippy. The Outlander Sport's braking distances are average for its class. After some initial softness when you press the brake pedal, it firms up and feels responsive.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
Whether you choose the base 2.0-liter four-cylinder or the optional 2.4-liter version, the Outlander Sport's EPA ratings fall short of its more modern rivals. The 2.0-liter is rated up to 24 mpg city and 30 highway. The all-wheel-drive version earns 1 mpg less in both categories. The 2.4-liter has estimates up to 23 mpg city and 29 highway; all-wheel drive means 1 mpg less on the highway. The all-wheel-drive Outlander Sport GT that we ran on our 75-mph highway fuel-economy route, which is part of our extensive testing regimen, earned 25 mpg.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
Despite being marginally improved in some trims, vast expanses of black plastic combine with an uninspired dashboard design to create a decidedly bargain-basement atmosphere inside the Outlander Sport. Leather seats are not available. Certain trims feature red stitching on the seats to spice up things. But no matter how much you pay, there is no escaping the Mitsubishi's lackluster cabin environment. Despite its exterior footprint, the Outlander Sport can't match the rear-seat room of competitors such as the Honda HR-V and the Kia Soul. There's enough room for two to fit comfortably back there, but legroom isn't generous. The Outlander Sport's 60/40 split-folding back seats easily fold to create a flat cargo floor, but the Mitsubishi can't hold as many carry-on suitcases as can many of its rivals. A relatively deep center console is a plus, but otherwise the Outlander Sport doesn't offer many places to stash your stuff. There are no door pockets for rear-seat passengers, and the spare tire takes up the entirety of the underfloor storage in the cargo area.
Infotainment and Connectivity
While a 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system is standard in the base model, every other trim has an 8.0-inch touchscreen with SiriusXM satellite radio as well as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The latter looks to have uninspired graphics and a limited number of customizable settings, but it does have physical volume and tuning knobs, which we always appreciate. Still, the Outlander Sport's connectivity features are obsolete versus the competition.
Safety and Driver-Assistance Features
The 2021 Outlander Sport earned a four-star crash-test rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The last version that was evaluated by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) was not named a Top Safety Pick. The Outlander Sport does have some standard driver-assistance technology, but blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert are options. Key safety features include:
- Standard forward-collision warning and automated emergency braking
- Standard lane-departure warning
- Standard automatic high-beams
Warranty and Maintenance Coverage
Mitsubishi's warranty is among the best in its class, offering coverage that matches or exceeds Hyundai and Kia's.
- Limited warranty covers five years or 60,000 miles
- Powertrain warranty covers 10 years or 100,000 miles
- No complimentary scheduled maintenance
2020 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport GT AWC
front-engine, all-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door wagon
PRICE AS TESTED
$28,920 (base price: $28,190)
DOHC 16-valve inline-4, aluminum block and head, port fuel injection
144 in3, 2360 cm3
168 hp @ 6000 rpm
167 lb-ft @ 4100 rpm
continuously variable automatic
Suspension (F/R): struts/multilink
Brakes (F/R): 11.6-in vented disc/11.9-in disc
Tires: Nexen Npriz RH7, P225/55R-18 97H M+S
Wheelbase: 105.1 in
Length: 171.9 in
Width: 71.3 in
Height: 64.8 in
Passenger volume: 97 ft3
Cargo volume: 22 ft3
Curb weight: 3316 lb
C/D TEST RESULTS
Rollout, 1 ft: 0.3 sec
60 mph: 8.0 sec
100 mph: 23.7 sec
Rolling start, 5–60 mph: 8.4 sec
Top gear, 30–50 mph: 4.3 sec
Top gear, 50–70 mph: 5.8 sec
¼-mile: 16.2 sec @ 86 mph
Top speed (drag limited): 123 mph
Braking, 70–0 mph: 163 ft
Roadholding, 300-ft-dia skidpad: 0.81 g
C/D FUEL ECONOMY
Observed: 23 mpg
75-mph highway driving: 25 mpg
Highway range: 390 miles
EPA FUEL ECONOMY
Combined/city/highway: 25/23/28 mpg
More Features and Specs
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