2020 GMC Acadia vs. 2020 Mitsubishi Outlander

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/06/04

The Acadia Denali’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Outlander doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

For enhanced safety, the front shoulder belts of the GMC Acadia are height-adjustable, and the middle 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 doesn’t offer comfort guides on its middle 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 Acadia are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Outlander doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

The Acadia has a standard front seat center airbag, which deploys between the driver and front passenger, protecting them from injuries caused by striking each other in serious side impacts. The Outlander doesn’t offer front seat center airbags.

Compared to metal, the Acadia’s plastic fuel tank can withstand harder, more intrusive impacts without leaking; this decreases the possibility of fire. The Mitsubishi Outlander has a metal gas tank.

The Acadia 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 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 Acadia and the Outlander have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee 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, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems and around view monitors.

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

Acadia

Outlander

OVERALL STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

138

208

Neck Injury Risk

22%

29%

Neck Stress

162 lbs.

412 lbs.

Neck Compression

16 lbs.

90 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

112/392 lbs.

334/511 lbs.

Passenger

STARS

4 Stars

4 Stars

Chest Compression

.6 inches

.6 inches

Neck Injury Risk

37%

43%

Neck Stress

152 lbs.

221 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

10/95 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 GMC Acadia is safer than the Mitsubishi Outlander:

Acadia

Outlander

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

106

163

Abdominal Force

155 G’s

163 G’s

Hip Force

253 lbs.

518 lbs.

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

263

349

Spine Acceleration

42 G’s

47 G’s

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

14 inches

17 inches

HIC

319

365

Spine Acceleration

33 G’s

41 G’s

Hip Force

673 lbs.

807 lbs.

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

Warranty

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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 Acadia’s warranty.

Reliability

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A hardened steel chain, with no maintenance needs, drives the camshafts in the Acadia’s engine. A rubber cam drive belt that needs periodic replacement drives the Outlander’s camshafts. If the Outlander’s belt breaks, the engine could be severely damaged when the pistons hit the opened valves.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 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 12th in initial quality. With 27 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mitsubishi is ranked 30th.

Engine

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The Acadia has more powerful engines than the Outlander:

Horsepower

Torque

Acadia 2.5 DOHC 4-cylinder

193 HP

188 lbs.-ft.

Acadia 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder

230 HP

258 lbs.-ft.

Acadia 3.6 DOHC V6

310 HP

271 lbs.-ft.

Outlander 2.4 DOHC 4-cylinder

166 HP

162 lbs.-ft.

Outlander GT 3.0 SOHC V6

224 HP

215 lbs.-ft.

Fuel Economy and Range

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Regenerative brakes improve the Acadia 2.0 Turbo’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Outlander doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Acadia’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 doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The Acadia FWD’s standard fuel tank has 3.6 gallons more fuel capacity than the Outlander AWC’s standard fuel tank (19.4 vs. 15.8 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The Acadia AWD’s standard fuel tank has 5.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the Outlander FWD’s standard fuel tank (21.7 vs. 16.6 gallons).

The Acadia 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 doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping

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

Acadia

Outlander

Front Rotors

12.6 inches

11.6 inches

Rear Rotors

12.4 inches

11.9 inches

The Acadia’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Outlander are solid, not vented.

The Acadia stops shorter than the Outlander:

Acadia

Outlander

70 to 0 MPH

173 feet

179 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the Acadia has larger standard tires than the Outlander (235/65R18 vs. 225/55R18). The Acadia AT4’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Outlander (255/65R17 vs. 225/55R18).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Acadia offers optional 20-inch wheels. The Outlander’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.

The GMC Acadia’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Mitsubishi Outlander only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

The Acadia 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 doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

The Acadia SLE/SLT/AT4/Denali has a standard space-saver spare (not available on SL) 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

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The Acadia offers an available driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Outlander’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

The Acadia has 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 Acadia’s wheelbase is 7.4 inches longer than on the Outlander (112.5 inches vs. 105.1 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Acadia is 3.9 inches wider in the front and 3.9 inches wider in the rear than on the Outlander.

The Acadia Denali AWD handles at .85 G’s, while the Outlander GT AWC pulls only .78 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The Acadia SLT AWD executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.9 seconds quicker than the Outlander SEL AWC (26.9 seconds @ .67 average G’s vs. 28.8 seconds @ .56 average G’s).

Chassis

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The front grille of the Acadia FWD 4 cyl. 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 doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

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

Passenger Space

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The Acadia has 15.6 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Outlander (143.8 vs. 128.2).

Cargo Capacity

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The Acadia has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the Outlander with its rear seat up (12.8 vs. 10.3 cubic feet). The Acadia has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the Outlander with its rear seat folded (79 vs. 63.3 cubic feet).

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the Acadia’s second row seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Outlander doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Acadia’s liftgate can be opened and closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Outlander doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its liftgate, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Towing

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Maximum trailer towing in the Mitsubishi Outlander is limited to 3500 pounds. The Acadia offers up to a 4000 lbs. towing capacity.

Servicing Ease

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The Acadia uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Outlander uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

The Acadia has a maintenance free battery for long life without checking the battery’s water level. The Outlander doesn’t have a maintenance free battery, so the water level in the battery’s cells must be checked often to prevent damage.

Ergonomics

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When different drivers share the Acadia (except SL/SLE/AT4), the optional memory seats and mirrors make it convenient. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position and outside mirror angle. The Outlander doesn’t offer a memory system.

The Acadia (except SL/SLE/AT4)’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 doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

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

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the Acadia 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.

The Acadia 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 has an automatic headlight on/off feature standard only on the SE/LE/SP/SEL/GT.

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

When the Acadia 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’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

The Acadia SLT/AT4/Denali’s standard rear view mirror and optional side view mirrors have an automatic dimming feature. These mirrors can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Outlander offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

Both the Acadia and the Outlander offer available heated front seats. The Acadia also offers optional heated second row 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 Acadia (except SL/SLE/AT4) 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.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the GMC Acadia Denali has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The Outlander doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

The Acadia (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 doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the Acadia owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Acadia will cost $500 less than the Outlander over a five-year period.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Acadia is less expensive to operate than the Outlander because typical repairs cost less on the Acadia than the Outlander, including $21 less for a starter, $117 less for a fuel pump and $63 less for front struts.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/06/04

The GMC Acadia outsold the Mitsubishi Outlander by over two to one during 2019.

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

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