Mitsubishi Outlander Sport adds more power for 2015

This small crossover has an updated interior, with a quieter cabin during driving. (WTOP/Mike Parris)
This small crossover has an updated interior, with a quieter cabin during driving. (WTOP/Mike Parris)

One thing you'll notice about the Outlander Sport is more distinctive styling than most crossovers. (WTOP/Mike Parris)
One thing you’ll notice about the Outlander Sport is more distinctive styling than most crossovers. (WTOP/Mike Parris)

The Octane Blue is a nice pop of color compared to the more sedate colors offered.  (WTOP/Mike Parris)
The Octane Blue is a nice pop of color compared to the more sedate colors offered. (WTOP/Mike Parris)

Mike Parris' tester came with the GT touring package that adds NAV with 7-inch screen, a loud 710W Rockford Fostgate Surround Sound audio system plus leather seats and a panoramic glass roof which helps open up the space. (WTOP/Mike Parris)
Mike Parris’ tester came with the GT touring package that adds NAV with 7-inch screen, a loud 710W Rockford Fostgate Surround Sound audio system plus leather seats and a panoramic glass roof which helps open up the space. (WTOP/Mike Parris)

This is a smaller crossover, so don’t expect the space like in other small crossovers. (WTOP/Mike Parris)
This is a smaller crossover, so don’t expect the space like in other small crossovers. (WTOP/Mike Parris)

The interior of the 2015 Outlander Sport GT has comfortable seats, the gauges are easy to read and it’s all very straightforward. (WTOP/Mike Parris)
The interior of the 2015 Outlander Sport GT has comfortable seats, the gauges are easy to read and it’s all very straightforward. (WTOP/Mike Parris)

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This small crossover has an updated interior, with a quieter cabin during driving. (WTOP/Mike Parris)
One thing you'll notice about the Outlander Sport is more distinctive styling than most crossovers. (WTOP/Mike Parris)
The Octane Blue is a nice pop of color compared to the more sedate colors offered.  (WTOP/Mike Parris)
Mike Parris' tester came with the GT touring package that adds NAV with 7-inch screen, a loud 710W Rockford Fostgate Surround Sound audio system plus leather seats and a panoramic glass roof which helps open up the space. (WTOP/Mike Parris)
This is a smaller crossover, so don’t expect the space like in other small crossovers. (WTOP/Mike Parris)
The interior of the 2015 Outlander Sport GT has comfortable seats, the gauges are easy to read and it’s all very straightforward. (WTOP/Mike Parris)

WASHINGTON — I drove the 2013 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport a few years back and quickly concluded that it needed more power. The 2.0L four cylinder was having a tough time keeping up with traffic. Now, Mitsubishi has worked to fix the lack of power for 2015 and added a larger 2.4L four-cylinder engine putting out 168hp. It still isn’t going to set the world on fire, but it’s now adequate and helps it keep up with traffic without much of a problem.

Usually with a larger engine the fuel economy suffers, but it didn’t seem to be the case with the 2015 Outlander Sport. The sticker says 23 mpg city/26 mpg highway and a combined 24 mpg, and I had no problem averaging 26.2 mpg. I did some heavy hauling during the 330 miles and still managed over 30 mpg on the highway on some longer trips. Part of the credit goes to the CVT automatic transmission, which seemed improved compared to the car I drove a few years back.

Mitsubishi is having a bit of a comeback lately with improved sales, and this Outlander Sport is one of their biggest sellers. This small crossover also has been updated inside with a quieter cabin during driving.

My tester came with the GT touring package — at a cost of $4,650 — that adds NAV with 7-inch screen, a loud 710W Rockford Fostgate Surround Sound audio system plus leather seats and a panoramic glass roof which helps open up the space. But if you choose the GT with AWD, the price quickly climbs to $30,495. If you don’t need all the toys, an Outlander Sport can come home for under $21,000.

The interior of the 2015 Outlander Sport GT has comfortable seats, the gauges are easy to read and it’s all very straightforward; only some of the buttons on the upgraded sound system are small and hard to read. The sound system likes the volume up loud, and with a big subwoofer in the rear hatch area it assures others will hear it, too. The rest of the material in the interior is fine but not the best in its class. It seems durable without looking too cheap. This is a smaller crossover, so don’t expect the space like in other small crossovers. Still, the Outlander Sport is bigger inside than some of the newer mini crossovers that are hitting the market.

One thing you’ll notice about the Outlander Sport is more distinctive styling than most crossovers. It looks sportier than most on the outside. There are even large 18-inch wheels that help finish off the look. The Octane Blue is a nice pop of color compared with the more sedate colors offered. A crossover with the Outlander Sport GT should stand out a bit.

The Mitsubishi Outlander Sport is in a crowded market in the small crossover segment. But with the option of a more powerful engine for 2015 that won’t break the bank when it comes time to hit the gas pump, it can be a very cost effective all-weather machine that’s easy to drive in the city and now can keep up with traffic on the highway. Don’t forget that 10-year warranty, and the 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport offers a good value for your buying dollars.

Mike Parris is a member of the Washington Automotive Press Association. The vehicles are provided by STI, FMI or Event Solutions for the purpose of this review.

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