Taking the 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander GT S-AWC on the Road

Just last week my family and I were heading down to sunny Myrtle Beach, South Carolina while test driving the 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander GT S-AWC. Top of its class, it’s the largest of the Mitsubishi family of cars. At the initial glance when it landed in my driveway, my husband was definitely skeptical about fitting our family of 6 for a long weekend road trip. He took one look inside, opened the trunk and set up the 3rd row and shook his head. I could see his head churning — clothing, luggage, blankets and pillows, snacks and drinks, toys and electronics to keep the kids occupied — How was it ALL going to fit?! The kids, on the other hand, were pretty stoked to check out a new car. Who doesn’t love a new ride?! They were already strategizing on seating arrangements.

DID WE FIT? My husband, myself, a 19, 10, 8 and newly minted 5 year old amazingly did just that! As we quickly learned, the 2nd row was adjustable and could move forward and backward with the touch of a lever. This was perfect for my little one, still in his convertible booster, not needing that much room. Nicole (19) had plenty of room with her own seat and the middle seat area and my 10 and 8 year old were thrilled to declare the 3rd row their own little bungalow. Instead of suitcases, we all packed duffle bags and strategically placed them in the car.

Of course PRIORITIES… We took a quick inventory of the available outlets and while only 2 USB ports were available, there were plenty of outlets for everyone (utilizing the double USB converters). Luckily we had a bunch at home and everyone was thrilled to know they wouldn’t have to fear their iPads or phones dying midtrip.

Soon we were on the road and on our way. There is a learning curve as you adjust and learn about all the different features of any new car, but right off the bat, we were enjoying our ride. My husband quickly was able to connect his Google Pixel to the onboard computer system through Android Auto. While I am far from wanting to trade in my iPhone, I was pretty impressed with the connectivity. While I had to rely on my phone holder to use WAZE, my husband’s phone was able to utilize the onboard screen through Android Auto and have WAZE right on the car screen. In addition to WAZE, he seemed to have full functionality of his phone including Spotify through the onboard computer. My iPhone, on the other hand, also was able to connect through Apple CarPlay. Its functionality was no different than any other car equipped with Apple CarPlay, which in all honesty was easier – nothing new to learn.

I had my phone connected to my favorite Spotify playlist blasting and everyone was happy in their own world.

  • ADAPTIVE CRUISE CONTROL WITH COLLISION MITIGATION – Perhaps this is standard in newer cars, but I really REALLY loved it. It allowed me to set my speed (within the speed limit) and just enjoy the drive. If anyone entered my lane abruptly, the car quickly self-adjusted and slowed down, quicker than I would have been able to. Anyone who has done long-haul drives knows that cruise control is your best friend.
  • ANDROID AUTO vs APPLE CARPLAY – The clear winner was the Android Auto. There was no reliance or need for a phone holder. Having WAZE with their traffic and police alerts was so necessary and being on the car screen was just so much easier. Car navigation systems are pretty useless and Mitsubishi seemed to have picked up on this as Navigation system doesn’t seem to be an offering.
  • AUTOMATIC HIGH BEAMS – The first leg of our trip was entirely overnight and we were heading into the country. The automatic high beams were a lifesaver. I am always unsure if it’s appropriate to use them and when to use them, especially if there are other cars on the road — will I blind them from behind? This decision was made for me.
  • LANE DEPARTURE WARNING – This is by far my favorite feature. You might think that a little strange, but safety is always my TOP priority. Everything from being a certified car seat safety technician, to drilling my in-laws who drive my children a lot about car safety, is why this is a great feature that I hope becomes standard in all cars. For myself, on this road trip of 13+ hours, when it had alerted me on more than one occasion, it was a cue for me to take a rest stop and perhaps I was more tired than I thought.
  • USB PORTS – We all definitely felt like there could have been more USB ports in the car as many of the newer model cars we’ve been in more recently seem to have at least 4 if not 6 ports.

THE VERDICT. Initially, our focus was on comfort, size, and amenities. The true test of that, of course, was if there would be any complaints about space or room during our trip. I’m happy to report that NOT one child complained about the car space or comfort for the 13+ hour ride (give or take a few pitstops). If they didn’t complain about it in that situation, you can be pretty sure that the Mitsubishi Outlander can accommodate a growing family of 6 pretty well. By the end of our road trip, what I was most impressed with from the 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander GT S-AWC was all the safety features. With all the features I mentioned above along with the multiview cameras and Blind Spot Warning (BSW) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) and Lane Change Assist (LCA), I felt really safe. Which as you all know, is what most important to me, protecting my family.

{ disclosure: At our request, we were given a 1-week loan to test drive the 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander GT S-AWC. No other compensation was exchanged. As always, all opinions expressed here are our very own. }