2019 GMC Terrain vs. 2019 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the GMC Terrain’s rear seat shoulder belts have child comfort guides to move the belt to properly fit children. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages children to buckle up. The Mitsubishi Outlander Sport doesn’t offer comfort guides on its rear seat belts.

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Terrain are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

When descending a steep, off-road slope, the Terrain’s standard Hill Descent Control allows you to creep down safely. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer Hill Descent Control.

The Terrain Denali offers an optional Surround Vision to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Outlander Sport only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

The Terrain has standard OnStar®, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to get turn-by-turn driving directions, remotely unlock your doors if you lock your keys in, help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the Terrain and the Outlander Sport have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available all-wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

A significantly tougher test than their original offset frontal crash test, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety does 40 MPH small overlap frontal offset crash tests. In this test, where only 25% of the total width of the vehicle is struck, results indicate that the GMC Terrain is safer than the Outlander Sport:

 

Terrain

Outlander Sport

Overall Evaluation

GOOD

ACCEPTABLE

Restraints

GOOD

ACCEPTABLE

Head Neck Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Peak Head Forces

0 G’s

0 G’s

Steering Column Movement Rearward

0 cm

1 cm

Chest Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Max Chest Compression

22 cm

28 cm

Hip & Thigh Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Femur Force R/L

.7/.1 kN

3.43/.93 kN

Hip & Thigh Injury Risk R/L

0%/0%

1%/0%

Lower Leg Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Tibia index R/L

.47/.51

.68/.36

Tibia forces R/L

1.2/.2 kN

1.9/1.9 kN

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Terrain the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 139 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Outlander Sport was not even a “Top Pick” for 2016.

Warranty

GMC pays for scheduled maintenance on the Terrain for 2 years and 24,000 miles. GMC will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance (up to 2 oil changes). Mitsubishi doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Outlander Sport.

There are almost 5 times as many GMC dealers as there are Mitsubishi dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Terrain’s warranty.

Reliability

To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Terrain has a standard 700-amp battery. The Outlander Sport’s 530-amp battery isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that GMC vehicles are better in initial quality than Mitsubishi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks GMC 20th in initial quality. With 12 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mitsubishi is ranked 26th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that GMC vehicles are more reliable than Mitsubishi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks GMC 18th in reliability. With 17 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mitsubishi is ranked 26th.

Engine

The Terrain’s standard 1.5 turbo 4 cyl. produces 22 more horsepower (170 vs. 148) and 58 lbs.-ft. more torque (203 vs. 145) than the Outlander Sport ES/SE’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. The Terrain’s 1.5 turbo 4 cyl. produces 2 more horsepower (170 vs. 168) and 36 lbs.-ft. more torque (203 vs. 167) than the Outlander Sport GT’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl. The Terrain’s optional 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 84 more horsepower (252 vs. 168) and 93 lbs.-ft. more torque (260 vs. 167) than the Outlander Sport GT’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

The Terrain’s 1.6 turbo diesel produces 95 lbs.-ft. more torque (240 vs. 145) than the Outlander Sport ES/SE’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. The Terrain’s 1.6 turbo diesel produces 73 lbs.-ft. more torque (240 vs. 167) than the Outlander Sport GT’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

As tested in Motor Trend the GMC Terrain 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. is faster than the Outlander Sport ES/SE 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. (automatics tested):

 

Terrain

Outlander Sport

Zero to 60 MPH

6.8 sec

10.1 sec

Quarter Mile

15.4 sec

17.7 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

89 MPH

78.4 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Terrain Diesel gets better fuel mileage than the Outlander Sport 2.0 4 cyl.:

 

 

Terrain

Outlander Sport

 

FWD

Manual

n/a

23 city/29 hwy

 

 

Auto

28 city/39 hwy

24 city/30 hwy

 

AWD

Auto

28 city/38 hwy

23 city/29 hwy

 

On the EPA test cycle the Terrain FWD with its standard engine gets better fuel mileage than the Outlander Sport ES/SE FWD CVT (26 city/30 hwy vs. 24 city/30 hwy).

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Terrain’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The Terrain has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Transmission

The GMC Terrain comes standard with an automatic transmission, for driver comfort, especially in the city. Automatic costs extra on the Outlander Sport.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Terrain’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the Outlander Sport:

 

Terrain 1.5T/Diesel

Terrain 2.0T

Outlander Sport

Front Rotors

11.8 inches

12.6 inches

11.6 inches

The Terrain stops shorter than the Outlander Sport:

 

Terrain

Outlander Sport

 

60 to 0 MPH

128 feet

137 feet

Consumer Reports

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

136 feet

143 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Terrain’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Outlander Sport (235/50R19 vs. 225/55R18).

The Terrain’s optional tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Outlander Sport’s 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Terrain offers optional 19-inch wheels. The Outlander Sport’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.

The Terrain has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Terrain’s wheelbase is 2.2 inches longer than on the Outlander Sport (107.3 inches vs. 105.1 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Terrain is 1.7 inches wider in the front and 1.9 inches wider in the rear than on the Outlander Sport.

The Terrain Denali AWD handles at .79 G’s, while the Outlander Sport 4WD pulls only .76 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The Terrain Denali AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.5 seconds quicker than the Outlander Sport SE 4WD (27.5 seconds @ .64 average G’s vs. 29 seconds @ .55 average G’s).

Chassis

The front grille of the Terrain uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

The Terrain uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

The Terrain has 5.7 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Outlander Sport (103.2 vs. 97.5).

The Terrain has .6 inches more front headroom, 2.3 inches more front hip room, 1 inch more front shoulder room, .6 inches more rear headroom, 3.4 inches more rear legroom, .2 inches more rear hip room and .1 inches more rear shoulder room than the Outlander Sport.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Terrain’s rear seats recline. The Outlander Sport’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

The Terrain has a much larger cargo area with its rear seat up than the Outlander Sport with its rear seat up (29.6 vs. 21.7 cubic feet). The Terrain has a much larger cargo area with its rear seat folded than the Outlander Sport with its rear seat folded (63.3 vs. 49.5 cubic feet).

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the Terrain SLE/SLT/Denali’s rear seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the Terrain (except SL) offers an optional power liftgate, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button, or optionally by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer a power liftgate.

Towing

The Terrain has a 1500 lbs. towing capacity. The Outlander Sport has no towing capacity.

Ergonomics

When two different drivers share the Terrain (except SL/SLE), the optional memory seats and mirrors make it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position and outside mirror angle. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer a memory system.

The Terrain (except SL/SLE)’s optional easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The Terrain’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge – which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The Outlander Sport does not have an oil pressure gauge.

The power windows standard on both the Terrain and the Outlander Sport have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Terrain is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Outlander Sport prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

The Terrain’s front and rear power windows all lower with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Outlander Sport’s passenger windows don’t open automatically.

On a hot day the Terrain’s driver can lower all the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Outlander Sport can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The Outlander Sport’s power locks don’t automatically lock the doors. The Terrain’s standard power locks automatically lock the doors when the transmission is engaged. This is an important feature for occupant safety. Locked doors are proven to open less often in collisions, and they are also effective in preventing crime at traffic lights. (The power lock’s automatic feature may have to be activated by your dealer.)

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Terrain has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the Outlander Sport only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

The Terrain has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. The Outlander Sport has an automatic headlight on/off feature standard only on the GT.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Terrain has standard extendable sun visors. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer extendable visors.

When the Terrain with available tilt-down mirrors is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Outlander Sport’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

The Terrain SLT/Denali has standard automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Outlander Sport offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

Both the Terrain and the Outlander Sport offer available heated front seats. The Terrain Denali also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Outlander Sport.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the Terrain Denali keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the Terrain’s optional (except SL/SLE) heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

The Terrain (except SL)’s optional dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.

Both the Terrain and the Outlander Sport offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Terrain has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Terrain SLT/Denali offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

The Terrain (except SL) offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

The Terrain Denali’s optional Automatic Parking Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Outlander Sport doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Recommendations

The GMC Terrain outsold the Mitsubishi Outlander Sport by almost three to one during 2017.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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