Here it is, the absolute bargain-basement version of the 2017 Mitsubishi Outlander.
Mitsubishi Motors Australia handed me the keys to an LS grade Outlander, with a five-speed manual transmission.
This is the only grade of Outlander available with the 2.0 litre petrol engine/2WD/five-seats/manual transmission and prices start from $28,750.
If you don’t need seven-seats, or all-wheel drive, or an auto transmission, and you’re on a serious budget, then I’m pleased to say that the Mitsubishi Outlander LS is, in general, reasonable enough.
The one thing that really lets the Mitsubishi down is the engine.
Delivering just 110kW and 190Nm, put a couple of adults in the Outlander and you could just about get out and run faster.
Even with the manual transmission a serious lack of torque makes the Mitsubishi SUV a chore to drive.
Second gear, in particular, is a let-down, especially on any sort of upward climb.
Fortunately, the larger 2.4 litre engine is available to you from $33,500 and with the much-needed extra grunt (124kW/220Nm) you get seven-seats (could be a plus for resale), AWD and an automatic transmission.
In that base-model guise you get a good level of standard features with Mitsubishi equipping the LS with:
- Digital radio
- Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
- 18″ alloy wheels
- Reverse camera
- Rear parking sensors
- Height-adjustable drivers seat
- Dual-zone climate control
- Rear heater/air-conditioning vents
- Tilt and reach steering adjustment
- A power outlet in the boot
But you also have to make-do with an old-fashioned key and ignition, manual parking brake, and a lack of auto headlights/wipers.
The driver info screen, while bringing you all the relevant info, is small and dated.
There’s nothing really ‘sexy’ inside the Outlander LS, though the seats are comfortable, the seating position is good and the legroom is excellent.
Boot space in the Outlander is also very generous.
On the road, aside from the dull performance, the current-edition Mitsubishi Outlander goes about its business without too much fuss.
The ride is good and the steering reasonable enough, just beware though that the front-wheel drive Outlander has a tendency to understeer on wet roads (the vehicle moves straight, despite the steering wheel being turned).
This, again, is probably another good reason to opt for the all-wheel drive version.
Five-star ANCAP safety features across the Outlander range and the only real options box you can tick is premium paint - a $590 premium.
So, by all means head into a Mitsubishi dealership and test-drive a 2017 Outlander, this is one of Australia’s best-selling SUVs and that is for a reason - it’s a well-designed and good-value offering.
Just don’t any expect any thrills in the entry-level model!
NUTS and BOLTS – 2017 Mitsubishi Outlander LS
Engine: 2.0 litre petrol producing 110kW and 190Nm
Transmission: Five-speed manual or six-speed CVT automatic
Safety: Five stars
Price: from $28,750