2019 Mazda CX-5 vs. 2019 Mitsubishi Outlander

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The CX-5 has standard Whiplash-Reducing Headrests, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Whiplash-Reducing Headrests system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Outlander doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The CX-5 has standard E911 Automatic Emergency Notification, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Outlander 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 CX-5 and the Outlander have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive and lane departure warning systems.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Mazda CX-5 is safer than the Mitsubishi Outlander:

CX-5

Outlander

OVERALL STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

82

208

Neck Injury Risk

23%

29%

Neck Stress

274 lbs.

412 lbs.

Neck Compression

23 lbs.

90 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

160/307 lbs.

334/511 lbs.

Passenger

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

156

251

Chest Compression

.5 inches

.6 inches

Neck Injury Risk

37%

43%

Neck Stress

205 lbs.

221 lbs.

Neck Compression

86 lbs.

91 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

449/262 lbs.

394/494 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Mazda CX-5 is safer than the Mitsubishi Outlander:

CX-5

Outlander

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

81

163

Abdominal Force

126 G’s

163 G’s

Hip Force

189 lbs.

518 lbs.

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

208

349

Hip Force

524 lbs.

794 lbs.

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

13 inches

17 inches

Spine Acceleration

32 G’s

41 G’s

Hip Force

435 lbs.

807 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard front crash prevention system, and its headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the CX-5 its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2019, a rating granted to only 45 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Outlander is only a standard “Top Pick” for 2019.

Warranty

The CX-5’s corrosion warranty is unlimited miles longer than the Outlander’s (unlimited vs. 100,000 miles).

There are over 62 percent more Mazda dealers than there are Mitsubishi dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the CX-5’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Mazda vehicles are better in initial quality than Mitsubishi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mazda 22nd in initial quality. With 11 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mitsubishi is ranked 26th.

Engine

The CX-5’s standard 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 21 more horsepower (187 vs. 166) and 24 lbs.-ft. more torque (186 vs. 162) than the Outlander’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl. The CX-5 GT Reserve/Signature’s standard 2.5 turbo 4 cyl. produces 26 more horsepower (250 vs. 224) and 95 lbs.-ft. more torque (310 vs. 215) than the Outlander GT’s standard 3.0 SOHC V6.

The CX-5’s 2.2 turbo diesel produces 2 more horsepower (168 vs. 166) and 128 lbs.-ft. more torque (290 vs. 162) than the Outlander’s standard 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl. The CX-5’s 2.2 turbo diesel produces 75 lbs.-ft. more torque (290 vs. 215) than the Outlander GT’s standard 3.0 SOHC V6.

As tested in Consumer Reports the Mazda CX-5 4 cyl. is faster than the Mitsubishi Outlander 4 cyl.:

CX-5

Outlander

Zero to 30 MPH

3.1 sec

3.8 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

8.6 sec

10 sec

45 to 65 MPH Passing

5.4 sec

6 sec

Quarter Mile

16.6 sec

17.7 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

85 MPH

81 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the CX-5 gets better fuel mileage than the Outlander:

MPG

CX-5

FWD

2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

25 city/31 hwy

AWD

2.2 turbo 4 cyl. Diesel

27 city/30 hwy

2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

24 city/30 hwy

Outlander

FWD

2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

25 city/30 hwy

AWD

2.4 DOHC 4 cyl.

24 city/29 hwy

3.0 DOHC 6 cyl.

20 city/27 hwy

An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the CX-5 2.5 non-turbo’s fuel efficiency. The Outlander doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the CX-5 GT Reserve/Signature’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Outlander:

CX-5

CX-5 GT Reserve/Signature

Outlander

Front Rotors

11.7 inches

12.6 inches

11.6 inches

The CX-5 stops shorter than the Outlander:

CX-5

Outlander

70 to 0 MPH

173 feet

179 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

144 feet

149 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the CX-5 Grand Touring/Signature has standard 19-inch wheels. The Outlander’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.

The CX-5 has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the Outlander; it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling

The CX-5 has engine speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Outlander doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the CX-5’s wheelbase is 1.1 inches longer than on the Outlander (106.2 inches vs. 105.1 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the CX-5 is 2.2 inches wider in the front and 2.2 inches wider in the rear than on the Outlander.

The CX-5 Signature AWD handles at .79 G’s, while the Outlander GT AWC pulls only .78 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The CX-5 Grand Touring AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1 seconds quicker than the Outlander SEL AWC (27.8 seconds @ .59 average G’s vs. 28.8 seconds @ .56 average G’s).

Chassis

The CX-5 is 5.7 inches shorter than the Outlander, making the CX-5 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space

The CX-5 has .1 inches more front legroom, 2.6 inches more front hip room, .7 inches more front shoulder room, .6 inches more rear headroom, 2.3 inches more rear legroom and 3.4 inches more rear hip room than the Outlander.

Cargo Capacity

The CX-5 has a much larger cargo volume than the Outlander with its rear seat up (30.9 vs. 10.3 cubic feet).

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the CX-5’s rear seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Outlander doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

Towing

The CX-5’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Outlander’s (2000 vs. 1500 pounds).

Ergonomics

When two different drivers share the CX-5 Grand Touring/Signature, the memory seats make it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position. The Outlander doesn’t offer memory seats.

The CX-5 offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Outlander doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The Outlander’s standard power locks don’t automatically lock the doors. The CX-5’s standard doors lock when a certain speed is reached. 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 CX-5 has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the Outlander only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

Consumer Reports rated the CX-5’s headlight performance “Very Good,” a higher rating than the Outlander’s headlights, which were rated “Good.”

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The CX-5’s headlights were rated “Good” to “Acceptable” by the IIHS, while the Outlander’s headlights are rated “Acceptable” to “Poor.”

To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the CX-5 Grand Touring/Signature has standard adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The Outlander doesn’t offer cornering lights.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the CX-5 has standard extendable sun visors. The Outlander doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Both the CX-5 and the Outlander offer available heated front seats. The CX-5 Grand Touring also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated second row seats aren’t available in the Outlander.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the CX-5 (except Sport/Touring) keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Outlander doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

Economic Advantages

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the CX-5 is less expensive to operate than the Outlander because it costs $270 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the CX-5 than the Outlander, including $203 less for a water pump, $8 less for front brake pads, $19 less for a starter, $290 less for a fuel pump, $18 less for front struts, $114 less for a timing belt/chain and $148 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations

Consumer Reports® recommends the Mazda CX-5, based on reliability, safety and performance. The Mitsubishi Outlander isn't recommended.

The CX-5 was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Five/10Best Trucks” for 2 of the last 2 years. The Outlander has never been a Car and Driver “Top Five/10Best Truck” pick.

The Mazda CX-5 outsold the Mitsubishi Outlander by almost four to one during 2018.

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

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