When I was asked if I would be interested in reviewing the 2012 Outlander Sport, how on Earth could I say no?!
Of course, the first thing I noticed about the car was its appearance. I had seen photos of it, but I was amazed at how beautiful it was in person! The lagoon blue color was gorgeous. All the curves and little details on the body of the car gave it a unique and stylish look. The alloy wheels and headlights literally shone.
The second thing I noticed was the key. I have to be honest, I was a little confused at first. I saw the keyholes, but there was no key to open them with (well, the key is hidden inside and can be released if needed). Obviously, this is my first experience with a key-less car! It took me a few days to realize it, but you don't need to use the key at all to lock/unlock the doors. All you need to do is have it on you, in your pocket or purse. I'm assuming it emits a signal...once you get close enough to the car, you simply push a button next to the handle to operate the locks. This is an awesome feature for those rainy days!
The one-touch start/stop engine switch was another first for me. I actually had to pull out the manual to figure out how to turn the car on. Turns out, all I had to do was push the brake down as I pushed the button! Now that the car was on, the first thing I did was turn on the air conditioning (another luxury my current car doesn't offer). It was ice cold in about 30-45 seconds. I loved how the gas and temperature gauges were digital and brightly colored. The whole dash was set up so you could see all the important info easily.
I'm only 5'2", so of course I had to adjust the seat. I was able to quickly raise the seat high enough so I could easily see the hood and road, as well as comfortably reach the pedals. My hubby is a full foot taller than me, but he had plenty of head and leg room in the passenger seat. The back seat was also very roomy. I dread taking my son's car seat in and out of my current car because it barely fits through the door, but I had absolutely no problem getting it in the Outlander Sport. The LATCH system made installation a breeze and I had tons of room to maneuver myself to get it latched on. The trunk opened effortlessly and was also pretty large. The full-sized stroller fit with more than enough room for the diaper bag, groceries, etc. There was a pass-through door for those times you need to transport long items, such as plywood or rods.
|Latch system and trunk pass-through|
Me and my hubby went to the store. I stayed in the car, leaving it on. When he got in and I put it in reverse, he actually said, "Is the car on?!" It was so incredibly quiet, even I almost thought it was just rolling back when I took my foot off the brake! As we were driving home, it started drizzling. I was totally surprised when the windshield wipers automatically turned on. Thanks so much for the rain sensor, because I hadn't even checked beforehand to see how to turn on the wipers!
We wanted to really take advantage of this opportunity of having the car, so we decided to take a trip to the Jersey shore. It's a good 85 miles away and would give me a great chance to actually use the car for its review purpose.
I knew how to get to Wildwood, but wanted to use the GPS too, just in case. It was extremely accurate with distances and the directions it gave were very easy to understand. It actually took us on the very route I normally use. It let us know when toll booths were coming up well in advance so we had our money ready. On the way home, it alerted us of a traffic jam and gave us the option of an alternate route and gave an estimate of 17 minutes saved if we took it. I decided not to take the alternate route. Needless to say, a few miles ahead we were in dead-stopped traffic. Next time, I'll definitely take its advice!
The trip itself was extremely enjoyable. The ride was very smooth and quiet. My daughter brought her NDS to play on the way there. When I asked her why she wasn't playing it, she actually said, "I want to enjoy the ride"! I couldn't believe it! The air conditioner worked so well I had to keep it on the lowest blower setting. The 6-speaker stereo sounded great. I was able to use the touchscreen panel to adjust the settings, such as bass, to get it to sound just the way I like it. It was very easy to program my favorite radio stations and I loved how I could change the station and control the volume right from the steering wheel.
The Outlander Sport did a great job of getting back up to highway speed when we had to stop to pay the tolls. Accelerating to pass slower vehicles was fine as well.
|Channel/volume, cruise control and hands-free calling are all right on the steering wheel|
Last, but definitely not least, the fuel economy. It has an estimated 24/31 miles per gallon. I'm not sure if I got that, but I do know when the car got picked up, it had 186 miles on it and had just hit the halfway gone mark. I don't know how far the car traveled after the tank got filled before being dropped off, but I can bet it's safe to say you can get at least 400 miles per tank. I have no clue if that's good or not, but it sure sounds good to me!
Honestly, I could not find a single thing about the vehicle that I did not like. I am fully serious when I say that the day they came to take the car back, I went online to check out various car dealer's sites for pricing. Unfortunately, it's a little bit out of my price range (well, the model I want is!) at the moment, but I will definitely be considering the Outlander Sport for when we are able to make a new car purchase. I encourage anybody to take one out for a test drive..I'm sure you will fall in love with it just as quickly as I did!
Click here to read another post that includes more information about the Outlander Sport's safety features, options and more.
I was loaned the vehicle shown above for one week for review purposes only. No other compensation was received. All opinions are 100% my own.