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Mitsubishi Outlander vs. Subaru Forester



  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    Insurance is less, because the Mitsuibishi is a slug compared to the XT. Maintenance will be somewhat higher with turbo. So you get a faster more agile car vs a car with more doo-dads. You pick it.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Shows that Mitsubishi indeed may kill unprofitable subsidiaries/operations:
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    edited March 2010
    He also compared the wrong models.

    We should compare the XLS to the less expensive XT Premium.

    You have to add packages to the XLS to get all the doo-dads you mention.

    Edit: TCO for the 2010 XT Premium is $41,593, so a few grand less.

    For reference, a 4 cylinder 2009 Outlander SE 4WD has a TCO of $42,207, and that's not even a V6, no options either. And I bet a 2010 is higher.

    source: (linked from the article)
  • p0926p0926 Posts: 4,423
    edited March 2010
    "It appears IntelliChoice contradicts itself. According to IntelliChoice and this chart Outlander insurance cost less vs. Forester."

    First off, I think I made it quite clear that the article didn't directly compare the Forester to the Outlander. If you don't think the Outlander should headline the "Worst Small SUV Money Pit" category, then you should take it up with US News and Intellichoice.

    Secondly, the statement that the "Outlander is much better equipped, so you get more car for the money" is totally subjective and dependent on what factors a buyer considers a priority.

  • Rgarding cargo space in the 2010 Forester. The base model has more cu feet than the premium amd limited. Does anyone know why this is? The base does not have a moon roof so maybe this the reason.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    That is exactly right.

    If you think about it, you're not really losing any space, unless you were stuffing things up against the headliner, which is doubtful.
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,374
    That reminds me of something I noticed at the auto show. The Forester was level but the cargo area was not. It had a minor slope down towards the back of the vehicle. Now, for children's toys that would be good as it would make balls easy to retrieve, but for anything you might need to keep level, like a birthday cake, there's a potential problem.

    I don't know that it would dissuade me from buying one; just something I found to be a little odd.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    edited March 2010
    You mean the cargo floor, or the seat backs once folded?

    The cargo floor seems level to me, and that leaves a 42.2" wide (B) by 35.5" long (E) area for your cake. That's plenty.



    Unless you have a 3 foot wide cake? :surprise:

    Maybe the kind that a cute girl pops out of?

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Why is the head unit offset from center?

    It's a little off to the right, putting it farther away from the driver. If anything, it should be offset closer to the driver, for a better viewer and easier reach.

    Here's a pic to show what I mean. Top is original. Bottom is my "fixed" position, where it should be. Is this because of JDM models that have the steering wheel on the other side?

    imageSee more Car Pictures at
  • Thanks for the info on the Forester trunk size. It appears one of the main complaints of the Forester is rattles. Do you think Subaru will address this? I now own a RAV4 and this is not a problem. We would like to replace our old Passet and thinking about a Forester. We like the looks but rattlews would drive me crazy.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Mine's quiet, but ask for an extended test drive and drive it on roads you're likely to encounter in your day-to-day use. Turn off the radio and listen carefully for engine/road/wind noise levels to see if they're within your tolerance level.

    I have a Sienna so I know some Toyotas can be tomb-like in their silence, so you may have high standards. I haven't been in a RAV4 lately so I can't really compare directly.

    Overall we like our Sienna and the nearly 150 cubic feet of cargo space it offers, but the Forester is a whole lot more fun to drive, easier to manuever/park, and has better visibility. In the snow it's not contest at all, of course. The Sienna hauls 8 adults and/or tons of cargo, plus it has a pillow-soft ride and is extremely isolated.

    Best way I can summarize it is this way:

    Some times we need the Sienna, but we always want to take the Forester.
  • Where our 2009 Outlander XLS was quick & snappy, another 2010 Outlander XLS felt like a slug. Extended test drives are a good idea for any vehicle.

    As for this whole Outlander vs. Forester topic, while I know I have considerable bias, the Outlander seems to exceed on a number of fronts

    - greater utility, larger cargo space
    - regular gas, 6 cyl non-turbo vs. 4 cyl turbo
    - less frequent maintenance (oil/fiter) with non-turbo
    - 6 speed vs. 4 speed
    - better premium stereo
    - much better warranty
    - turning circle and ground clearance are nearly the same
    - IIHS rating are nearly the same

    Subjectively I prefer the inside and outside looks of the Outlander. And I know for sure I like the seat comfort of the Outlander. I know full well the Outlander suffers for resale, but if you keep cars for 10 years of so (like many Sube owners), it doesn't matter.

    I know this is all old news, but Outlander seems to be the better pick.
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,374
    The cargo floor. It was flat but not level. Just thought it was odd.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,374
    I think what you're seeing is an optical illusion from the camera's point of view. The screen is directly above the HVAC controls. Not perfect, I think you can get a better idea from the pics on Mitsu's site:

    If that doesn't work for you, I can post a pic of my dash as taken from between the front seats.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    edited March 2010
    Some counterpoints:

    * the 230hp V6 is now tuned for premium fuel
    * you trade off some passenger space, especially 2nd row headroom
    * the F-XT gets better results in accelerating, passing, and top speed even w/4EAT
    * you can still get a 5 speed manual with the X (and great mileage)

    Did you know that the base Forester actually has more total interior volume? Less only if you add that moonroof, because it takes up ceiling space. Point is, overall they're very close in size.

    Mitsu offers more content but keep in mind the price points push deep in to Outback 3.6R territory, and Subaru offers Harmon-Kardon at that price, too.

    The warranty is nice - if you think MMNA will remain in business for 10 years. Mitsu just shuttered Ralliart, so don't think they're not willing to close unprofitable divisions. Sales are down 80% in the past decade!

    I just priced a 7 year bumper-to-bumper warranty from Subaru for $715. That splits the difference between Mitsu's B2B and powertrain warranties, so call it roughly even. I won't pay out of pocket because I have a Chase Subaru card and my rewards will pay for the warranty - zero out of pocket. I also got $1600 off the new purchase with accumulated rewards. That lowers my TCO even more.


    Mitsu was offering a $500 loyalty incentive, FWIW, but there just aren't deals like there were a couple of years ago.

    Forester has the best small SUV ride and it the least expensive SUV to own, including FWD and hybrid competitors (Consumer Reports, April 2010). It's their Top Pick. CR also put in the Top 10 Values, the only SUV to make the list.

    So their best costs the cheapest, hard to ignore.

    Even if we ignore the subjective scores, they survey owners about satisfaction and the Forester scored higher than the Outlander. If we're happier than you guys are (and I'm not saying that you aren't), try to imagine just how satisfied Forester owners are. :shades:

    As you hinted it's an IIHS Top Safety Pick, more ground clearance, and while that difference seems small, the approach/departure angles stretch that advantage (18 degrees vs. 25 degrees on departure). Check out suspension articulation in some of the videos shared recently.

    Forester earned ALG's best residual award. And don't forget my favorite features - that huge moonroof is more than twice as big (26" vs. 11.5").

    I realize we each have different priorities, and that's why we have so many choices. Outlander may indeed have been the best pick for you, but you won't convince me to spend more to be less satisfied in a car that isn't quite as safe.

    I'll end by noting that Forester wins loyalty awards and the reason is folks like me come back to buy our 3rd Subaru, but not our last.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    It's not just an illusion, in fact I noticed it in person, not in photographs.

    Look at the 3 HVAC buttons below, use the middle one as a center line. The stereo is offset to the right.

    Here is Motor Trend's shot: r+interior_dash.jpg

    A different shot from Car gurus: r-interior.jpg

    If you draw a straignt line up from the center button, you'll see most of the screen is on the passenger side.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    Where our 2009 Outlander XLS was quick & snappy, another 2010 Outlander XLS felt like a slug.

    Maybe it was due to the adaptive transmission that hadn't learned your "snappy" driving style. If the car you demo'd had been driven by a lot of people, the transmission learning may have gotten a bit foggy trying to find a mean.
  • To be fair, I've never driven a Subaru. My indifference towards the make comes more from being a passenger and not liking the ride or space. And unfortunately, there are quite a few people I wouldn't consider friends who happen to own Subarus (its like not wanting to name your kid after someone you didn't like in grade school).

    Anyway, more recent experiences sitting in 2010 Foresters and Outbacks have me preferring the latter for comfort, looks and utility. For the record, here are my counter-counter points

    - we have a 2009 Outlander V6, so can still pump regular, although, for no good reason I choose 89 octane. As a leftover year, we got a better loyalty incentive. After 2 good Mitsu products, we keep coming back for more.
    - my immediate and extended family are all short, so headroom is rarely a factor, although interestingly, I prefer to have my driver fore-aft position set furthest back
    - not too worried about MMNA disappearing, since they sell quite well beyond the States, and Mitsubishi is a much broader/diverse company than just cars (like Fuji Heavy)

    Not knocking Subes. I really don't see that either make is comparatively far off for performance and safety. Its just preference, born out of experience and loyalty. Who knows, someday I might just have to DRIVE a Subaru, so I have some idea what I'm talking about! ;)
  • authurdentauthurdent Posts: 82
    edited March 2010
    Maybe it was due to the adaptive transmission that hadn't learned your "snappy" driving style.

    Maybe I should have taught that new dog some new tricks! There were other sounds and feelings coming from the 2010 XLS we didn't like. Plus the new front end was a little too aggressive for me. I like the softer, gentler looks of the old model. :blush:
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,374
    As I've said before, the Outlander's V6 recommends premium; it does not require it. I think I've done one tank of premium and have been doing regular or mid-grade the rest of the time. I haven't noticed any difference so far in either power or economy. While I'm sure there's a power difference, it's not in the rev band I use for daily driving.

    BTW, regarding the nav screen not being centered over the HVAC controls, I was wrong; it's true the controls go slightly towards the driver. But it took this being pointed out and me climbing in to the second row seats for me to notice it. Not a big deal at all.

    In fact, with it normally set on full-auto on a daily basis I don't touch those controls at all.

    Oh, I got my JD Power survey yesterday & will be completing it tonight.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Outback is nice, no doubt. Subaru can't make enough of them. They have a shortage of the loaded ones especially.

    A couple of new Forester owners on Edmunds were shopping for Outbacks, but got a Forester because that's all that was available. One special ordered an Outback way back in December, but it had not come in yet, and the dealer could not promise a delivery date, so he got an F-XT.

    Earlier I was talking about an aging Galant hurting Mitsu sales, the case here is the opposite - a popular Outback is helping the Forester.

    Mitsubishi won't go away, but I think MMNA may reorganize and end up selling PSA cars if they buy a stake in Mitsubishi Motors. Check out the concept photo above, and that may not be a bad thing.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The asymmetry is small, and you may not even have noticed had I not pointed it out. Sorry 'bout that.

    Then again, you've got me curious, so I'll take a level to my Forester's cargo area to see if it really does incline back significantly.

    I'm guessing it's close enough to level that a tennis ball will not roll back.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587 age-3/

    Sweeeet! I'm 3 for 3. Miata, Sienna, and Forester all make the list. :shades:
  • fushigifushigi Chicago suburbsPosts: 1,374
    You know, if it took doing a rebadge to get a better Galant in the US I'd be all for it. Nothing wrong with it as long as the product being sold is well-made and competitive. Though I'm not sure if I could call a PSA well-built; euro cars aren't really known for that for the most part. :)

    Outlander Sport will be interesting when it comes out. Could be good competition for the Rogue & Tucson.

    I don't mind the HVAC not being 100% centered under the nav screen; the controls are canted towards the driver a smidge and if you need to turn on the defrost or do other quick changes to the controls, the driver will be the one to make them so it makes sense. Leaving the nav centered works well since my wife, as the front passenger, does most of the fiddling with the nav/stereo.

    As to the level cargo area in the Forester I probably would never of noticed it if we weren't inside at the auto show. I don't usually consider outside areas level, including garage floors.
    2017 Infiniti QX60 (me), 2012 Hyundai Elantra (wife)
  • authurdentauthurdent Posts: 82
    edited March 2010
    Yikes, no Mitsu on the JD lists. Looks like I better trade! :cry:
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    >> more agile car vs a car with more doo-dads.

    "More agile"? Who is more agile here?:

    Edmunds Inside Line
    slalom test 6 x 100 ft (mph):

    BMW X6 M.................68.6
    2010 Outlander GT.........66.2
    Mercedes C Class.........65.8 (sedan)
    Cayenne Turbo X.......65.2
    MB ML63 AMG.......64.4
    BMW X3.......64.4
    07 Outlander XLS.......63.9
    BMW X5 M.......63.5
    Audi Q5.......61.9
    RAV4 LTD.......61.6
    MB GLK.......61.3
    Forester 2.5XT.......60.3
    Murano LE.......59.2
    MB ML350.......57.5
    Lincoln MKX.......57.3
  • chelentanochelentano Posts: 634
    >> the statement that the "Outlander is much better equipped, so you get more car for the money" is totally subjective

    totally subjective:
  • p0926p0926 Posts: 4,423
    totally subjective

    Thank's for proving my point :P

    The categories chosen and point values assigned reflect the individual bias of whomever designed the comparison tool (Is that from a MItzu website?). I'm sure I could comb thru the brochures of any of the other models and come up with a dozen features not listed (and which the Outlander doesn't have).

    As for the values, while the reviewer may consider LED tail lights as more important than a 3rd row seat, there are plenty of buyers who would disagree. A chrome accent shifter knob has the same value as 3-years of free maintenance? Yeah right. And those are but two examples of individual score-weighting bias. Oh and the Outlander has the best AWD system? Puh-lease!

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I like the Outlander Sport's styling, it's like a butch A3. Automotive News reported the new strategy will be smaller, more fuel efficient.

    Cars in that class don't tend to do much volume here, though. Let's see.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    edited March 2010
    Re-post times 6.

    Agility should incorporate accelerating and braking as well, so Motor Trend's Figure 8 is a better measure of agility IMO:

    Forester XT: 28.1 sec @ 0.60 g avg

    Forester X: 28.4 sec @ 0.58 g (avg)
    Outlander GT: 28.4 sec @ 0.58 g (avg)

    All are good, but the base Forester matches the upgraded Outlander GT, and is actually quicker than the Outlander XLS they tested.
This discussion has been closed.