$7,702 - $9,518

2012 Mitsubishi Outlander Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2012 Mitsubishi Outlander was new.


Performance: 7.6

Test drivers say the 2012 Mitsubishi Outlander handles well, but the base four-cylinder engine and even the optional V6 can be a bit sluggish. Its standard engine gets pretty good fuel economy, though.

  • "What's more, the Outlander's performance isn't at odds with the promise conveyed by its sporty appearance; it boasts the kind of sharp handling that's a rarity in this family-oriented class.” -- Edmunds
  • "Outlander has a relatively long wheelbase, and its suspension does an OK job of absorbing sharp bumps. It doesn't match the buttoned-down composure of its rivals from Honda or Toyota.” -- Consumer Guide

Acceleration and Power

The 2012 Outlander ES and SE come with a 2.4-liter, 168-horsepower inline four-cylinder engine. Many test drivers find it sluggish and prefer the GT model's 3.0-liter, 230-horsepower V6. Even so, they say that the GT’s V6 isn’t fantastic either.

Two-wheel drive models with the four-cylinder engine get an EPA-estimated 23/28 mpg city/highway. Two-wheel drive V6 Outlanders get 19/26 mpg. If you go for all-wheel drive, four-cylinder models net 22/27 mpg and V6 models get 19/25 mpg. 

  • "While the Outlander's V6 isn't as powerful as those in the Kia Sorento or Toyota RAV4, it offers brisk acceleration.” -- Edmunds
  • "Four-cylinder models are slow from a stop but build speed adequately above 20 mph. We timed an AWD version at 9.4 seconds 0-60 mph. The CVT adjusts ratios promptly for passing, but overall power is limited. V6 Outlanders have more than enough verve for most driving conditions, but could use a bit more punch for ideal highway passing response.” -- Consumer Guide

Handling and Braking

The Outlander's nimble handling is one of its greatest strengths, thanks to a platform shared with the sporty Mitsubishi Lancer sedan. All-wheel drive is available on the Outlander SE and GT, though it’s not available on the base ES trim. Drivers say the GT handles better than the base models.

  • "This crossover has quick and communicative steering feel with moderate body lean in turns. GT handles best and exhibits little body lean.” -- Consumer Guide
  • "Its handling limits are noticeably higher than the typical crossover's, its steering is pleasantly weighted and its suspension is tuned to deliver sportiness that doesn't come at the expense of comfort.” -- Edmunds

Find the Best Price

Enter your zip code to get local pricing.

Get Dealer Quotes

To get dealer quotes, enter your zip code.

Search Used Listings

To search used listings, enter your zip code.

Change Location

Enter your zip code to see listings near you.

Please enter a valid zipcode

Best Price Program

Interested in a New?

Use the U.S. News Best Price Program to find great deals and get upfront pricing on the.