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Outlander vs CX-7 vs Tribeca

medellinrobmedellinrob Posts: 7
edited March 8 in Mazda
I've been reading reviews. But I have not made my mind yet, and I've already test-drove them...
I think I'll buy the CX-7 but I'm still not sure, perhaps I'm in love with the looks... The Outlander is great too. And I also have in mind the Subaru Tribeca... (Is the Tribeca worth the extra money? I have the money, but I believe I do not get as much for each dollar). What would you recommend? Why?

Thanks in advance!


  • Forgot to mention.
    I'm looking for a reliable SUV/CUV that has amenities, technology, luxury and handles really well. I want a quick response from the engines too.
    I do not mind if the third row is small, or if the handles make noises. Also I really do not mind if it doesn't handle ok in snow, since It never snows here.


    Note: English is not my first language, I apologize for any mistakes in any way.
  • wjbushsrwjbushsr Posts: 135
    No scholars here... As long as there is spellcheck, we're all perfect! :P

    For the money I got a lot in the way of my CX-7; stability control; standard! Traction control; Standard! Zoom Zoom... priceless! :shades:

    There are more "refined" interiors on the market, but none do it as well as the CX-7 for the price. Plus I've had mine for an entire year, June 8th, and I still don't have any creaks or rattles from my panels or doors. The downside of the CX-7 is the tires that came with mine, at 24k miles I had to switch to another brand entirely. The Yokohamas are much better for this car than the Bridgestones that came with it. {IMHO} ;)

    Good luck and welcome to the forum! :shades:
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,661
    The '08 Tribeca has a larger, torque-friendly 3.6 engine that's designed to run on regular fuel. The gas mileage is expected to match or better that of the old 3.0, which used premium gas.

    As to whether it's worth the extra money? You'll need to drive them all and then decide for yourself if the 'Beca is worth it. I think it is. I much prefer the full-time AWD that the Subie has over the on-demand systems of the CX7 and Outlander.

    One more point. In many ways the Tribeca is more of a competitor for the larger CX9, and not the smaller CX7.

  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    I believe, the Outlander would be the best CUV for you.

    Reliable? Outlander is listed by Consumer reports among most reliable SUVs, but CX-7 and Tribeca are not there:
    CR Best and Worst Why? May be, cose is build entirely in Japan and has warranty much better vs. Mazda. Also check out reliability and quality ratings by real owners here at Outlander owners are still more satisfied:
    Mazda CX-7 Consumer Rating 8.9
    Mitsubishi Outlander Consumer Rating 9.2
    Subaru B9 Tribeca Consumer Rating 8.8

    Amenities, technology? Outlander beats in this department most of the SUVs priced up to $40K. Just check this comparison, it's Outlander vs. RAV4, but CX and Tribeca would not do any better against Outlander: comaprison

    Handling? I believe Outlander and CX-7 have better handling over Subaru.

    Engine? Outlander's V6 has plenty of horse power (220 hp) for it's size, which is, for instance, more even then Mercedes ML320 SUV (215 hp), while it weights much less.
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    >> I much prefer the full-time AWD that the Subie has over the on-demand systems of the CX7 and Outlander.

    As for AWD, Outlander does have the full-time "AWD Lock" mode, which could be switched back to "AWD Auto" mode for better fuel economy: it's great to have this choice and flexibility! Also Mitsubishi known as a great off-road brand, winning 12 Dakar rallies! Subaru could not make even one win.
  • rcpaxrcpax Posts: 580
    Agree. Outlander has best balance of power, handling, performance, technology (esp in terms of safety), smooth 6-speed a/t, decent fuel economy for its class (using unleaded), great 4WD system that allows for 2wd mode if you want it (and change it on the fly even at hiway speeds), great reliability coupled with great warranty, and it looks good too. If you're considering the Outlander, try to visit our little corner HERE. You'll see why owners are loving this CUV.

    And talking about the Dakar, the 07 Outlander is the direct descendant of the Pajero Evo 2+2 Concept. The same concept where the current Dakar champion Pajero MPR13 was derived from. From a glance you can see right away that the Pajero Evo MPR13 looks strikingly similar to the Outlander rather than the production Pajero/Montero. Yeah, 12 wins, 7 of those in a row, there's no mistaking about quality of engineering, technology, and reliability.
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,661

    Unfortunately the '08 Tribeca info wasn't available, so you see the '07 info here. Also, this is for top trim models, not base models.

    Keep in mind the "spec sheet war" is only part of the story. Bottom line is you need to drive each model you're considering. What you get via "seat-of-the-pants" is often far more telling.

    I would also drive each model several times, with several days inbetween, so as to let the experience set in. That also gives you the opportunity to check or re-check some features that you're unsure of. I would go to different dealers to do this, as that will also let you get a sense of what each dealer is like.

  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    Yep, check out this cool 2007 Dakar Rally video: Pajero Evo MPR13 in the desert:

    Dakar Rally video
  • wjbushsrwjbushsr Posts: 135
    Somehow I doubt that the outlander in the video is the same as a floor model ready to hit the streets.

    When you bring up these scenarios, keep the idea of apples to apples in mind.
  • rcpaxrcpax Posts: 580
    It's not an Outlander, It's a Super Production Category vehicle for the Dakar. It's a Pajero MPR13. No it's not your average vehicle you can buy from the dealership. And I think the video is just to get people not familiar with Mitsubishis and idea of Mitsu's involvement in motorsports, and was never meant to con people to believe that this is a road going version. The technology learned from rally though is transferred to production vehicle design, that's why the Outlander and the new Lancer handles so well.
  • nickelnickel Posts: 147
    I had in a a past life 2 Mitsus: 1 Galant and 1 Montero Sport (company cars, after the first one I'd never pay for a Mitsu). After a relatively short time, both started giving me troubles. My recommendations would be as it follows:
    a) If you want a sporty SUV, compare between the CX7 and a Subaru Outback XT (turbo).
    b) If you want a nicer interior, while a do it all engine, take the Tribeca. Nothing is better than a Subaru while it rains, or giving you the sense that you are capable of doing everything paying so little.
    c) If you really want a Mitsubishi, go to a dealership, and ask the salesman to find you a '06 Montero. They had some remaining in some dealerships around the country, and you can buy the flagship of the brand at a big, big discount (like a friend who paid $24.5k in a car whose suggested price was $34K. Remember that in the US a Mitsubishi has a resale value lower than the Chevys and Fords, and that's a lot to say.

    Con toda confianza, como latino te digo, vete con Subaru, Honda o Toyota, y no pierdas tu tiempo con otras marcas, a menos que estes haciendo un leasing. En ese caso, haz un lease del vehiculo que te de la gana, para lo cual yo lo haria de un Acura RDX, si tu nunca te sales de las cales para ir a los montes.
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    >> Unfortunately the '08 Tribeca info wasn't available, so you see the '07 info here. Also, this is for top trim models, not base models.

    That site gives us only basic info. It does not mention other standard/optional cool features available on Outlander, and most of them are not available on Tribeca and CX-7:

    MP3 music server, paddle shifters, split liftgate, skid plates, 650 watt amplifier, FAST Key, keyless ignition, bluetooth, DVD palyer, Xenon, LED rear lights. You can get other dealer installed OEM options:
    Mitsu Catalog, such as parking sensors, rear view camera, multi-color HID lights, wood trim, etc.

    Outlander easily wins the "specs war".
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    The Mitsubishis you drove were different animals. These were essentially Chrysler vehicles with Mitsubishi label. These cars were built in Illinois and they had Chrysler powertrain and parts made by Detroit suppliers. Thanks God, Mitsubishi divorced Chrysler in 2005. Chrysler certainly heavily damaged Mitsubishis reputation in US, which in fact affected the resale values of Chrysler-build Mitsubishis. But now, the things have changed. The Outlander now is built entirely in Japan by exclusively Mitsubishi. As a result, we get one of the most reliable vehicles on the market, certainly more reliable then Tribeca. This is the hard data:
    Consumer Reports 2006 ratings:
    2006 Outlander: top 5 in class
    2006 Tribeca: average owner rating:
    2007 Outlander: 9.2
    2007 Tribeca: 8.8

    Yahoo Autos owner rating:
    2007 Outlander: 4.5
    2007 Tribeca: 4.0

    Different sources, and very consistent results in favor of Outlander. So if you want a reliable SUV, get the Outlander. Not only it has better reliability, but it also has better warranty and roadside assistance.

    As for sportiness, the Outlander beats Tribeca in both handling tests by Slalom: 63.9-mph vs. 62.1-mph. Skid pad test: Outlander wins again: 8.0g vs. 7.8g.

    “Nothing is better than a Subaru while it rains” - this is very bold statement. Do you have any hard data to support this statement? Any independent tests or rally results? Mitsubishi on the other hand does have a great record in extreme weather/road conditions. Last year Mitsubishi won 1st place (7th year in a row) and 2nd place in 2007 Dakar Rally, while Subaru did not even made the top 10.
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,661
    They have an 2007 Outlander as one of their long-term test vehicles. Lots of opinions and comments, mostly of which are quite positive. A very informative read.

    2008 Tribeca, also a good writeup, clearly showing how the '08 has improved upon the '06 – '07 models.

    2007 CX-7 being compared with the RAV4 and Santa Fe.

  • "One more point. In many ways the Tribeca is more of a competitor for the larger CX9, and not the smaller CX7. "

    Thanks bob and every one else.
    I know the CX-9 is more alike to a Tribeca than a CX-7 is.
    Thing is I like smaller vehicles and I was thinking in a CX-7 and an outlander, but if I were to pay a bit more, it would not be for a CX-9 I would go for the subaru. I don't like the idea of having an expensier car that looks just like it's little brother (Ok I know they are really different, but still they are similar).

    When I drove the outlander I believe i avaraged 25 mph going only once or twice above 50 mph which is really low to get to know a vehicle, so I'm going to another test drive this week.
    At the CX-7, in the other hand, I think I avaraged 35 mph and sped up to 65 or so. I'll also test it again.

    Thanks to all.
  • xgbtxgbt Posts: 28
    I was very interested in the Outlander when it first came out. I am looking for a compact SUV and the Outlander is right sized and looks good on the paper. So I spent a lot of time sitting in it and then test drove it.

    I later had an extended test drive of the CX-7. After that, I wouldn't look back to the Outlander any more despite its lower price and my frugality.

    The CX-7 is not only more powerful, but also much more refined. It rides beter, the seats are more comfortable, and the finishing is way better. In a word, it has the luxurious feel that puts it a par (or many) above the Outlander and more than justifies the price difference.

    Try them out yourself and see if you agree.
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    I have. So have tried hundreds of other owners, who posted their ratings on MSN and This is not "on paper" – these are real owners. Outlander wins over CX-7 with a decent gap on both sites:
    MSN: 9.5 vs. 9
    Edmunds: 9.2 vs. 8.8

    In terms of ride, interior and seat comfort neither has advantage. The CX-7 is a good car, but the Outlander is just so much better. It looks more stylish vs. odd-looking CX-7. Its V6 is smoother; and speaking of power it can tow more, it has better fuel economy and runs on regular gasoline. Outlander has more of internal space and it’s equipped better with latest gadgets. Outlander is more reliable (Consumer Reports 2006), has better warranty and comes with 5y. free roadside assisstance.
  • carlitos92carlitos92 Posts: 458
    "Odd-looking" is in the eye of the beholder... and "to each his own." So, far be it from me to stop someone from getting an Outlander if they're looking for an ugly vehicle to tow with and can't afford premium gas. :P
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    Exterior design is a matter of taste, but the fact is that CX-7 exterior design scores consistently much lower by its owners on and ratings vs. Outlander. And while CX-7 owners are not exactly thrilled by Mazda styling, non-owners may consider it odd looking, or even, like you've said, "ugly" :-)

    As for premium gas, I can afford it, but I don't always buy things, just for the reason of affordability. This Mazda, just does not deserve the premium gas.
  • carlitos92carlitos92 Posts: 458
    "but the fact is that CX-7 exterior design scores consistently much lower by its owners on and vs. Outlander."

    Not knowing you, I'll give you the benefit of the doubt that you understand what you're trying to say - but I don't. I don't have any sympathy for an idiot who would buy a vehicle and then rate it low on design - unless that person is Stevie Wonder. Makes you "wonder" if they were blind when they test-drove the car. ;)

    So, yes, there are those with an axe to grind who have rated the CX-7 in the dumps, even in areas where they should have had full knowledge going in - but generally, CX-7 owners rate "design" in the 9's and 10's, as it should be. I would assume Mitsu owners do the same, which is fine. I don't know of any formal venue where owners of one car were asked to rate another make on design or anything else. Those who get the CX-7, get it. Those who don't, don't. Same for the Outlander.
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