Monday, July 13, 2015

Cruising With My Naval Recruit Training Command Graduate in a 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander GT #DriveMitsubishi #SummerTravel

Written By:  Bobbie

On a recent trip between Great Lakes and Chicago to see my older daughter's graduation from Navy boot camp, I was given the chance to test drive a 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander GT S-AWC.  I have to say, driving around for the week in this car was a fantastic experience.  Even after 4 hours sitting on a plane, I was comfortable with the additional drive from Chicago out to our hotel in Libertyville.  My mom and younger daughter kept falling asleep in the car when we made our tourist runs into Chicago.  Dual front temperature control was great as my mom and I are always fussing at each other if it is too hot or too cold when we drive around together.  We had heated seats, but it was never cold enough to test them out.

It was strange and fun not to have an actual key to open the doors, or place into the steering column.  I did not have to dig around in my purse looking for the key to unlock the doors or start up the car, as it just sensed the key fob was close and I could unlock the doors with just a couple quick presses of the button on the door.  This was great when I was herding my crew to the car but I always made sure to have the key fob in my hand to lock up before leaving the car.  I had to learn the navigation system on the fly, but by the third day I had it down.  It was so much more convenient that when I use my phone, and when driving at night, the lights on the dashboard and touch screen were bright and made it easy to see all the important information I needed while driving, but not so bright that I had to blink several times to get my eyes to adjust back watching the road.

My other favorite feature was the back up camera.  The camera was a life saver for backing up into small parking spaces at the hotel and in different parking garages around Chicago and Libertyville.  I was able to swing into the parking spaces quickly and did not hold up a line of traffic while adjusting the car to be straight between the parking lines.  Being backed into the parking stalls made it all that much easier to just dash out of the spot when we were leaving the parking garages.  This was no joke, we were parked in the Soldier Field parking garage on July 4th to visit the Field Museum, and were trying to leave when all the Navy Pier fireworks spectators were rolling in, as well as all the ticket holders for the Grateful Dead concert.  The navigation system kept up with all the lane and road closures, so getting out of the city was relatively painless.

A fun feature of the in dash touch system was when I put the car in Eco Mode, and then watched to see if I could make between 1-5 little green leaves appear.  I usually managed to get the Outlander GT up to 4 leaves, and once in a while 5 leaves.  I was going back and forth between freeway driving and city driving the whole week.  Sometimes it was smooth sailing on the freeway, other times it was stop and go, and a little bit of city driving.  Just for giggles I activated the lane departure warning system.  That actually came in handy while driving around in the city and constructions zones, so I ended up leaving it on all the time.

I have to say that the Outlander GT makes for a smooth ride.  I was easily able to accelerate to freeway speeds from on ramps, or when I wanted to pass another vehicle.  I loved that even with the seat set high I still had a lot of headroom, and with the driver seat all the way back, my 5' 8 daughter still had ample legroom to sit behind me.  I always told my girls when they were smaller that they had to hold my hand in the parking lot until they could see over the top of the car.  My Navy daughter no longer agrees to this rule.  The optional 3rd row seating legroom looked pretty tight, but we did not need to use it on this trip.  Sadly I was not able to spend much time with my daughter as she was sent to her advanced schooling the day after graduation.

The cargo space was a little smaller than I expected, but I have a large SUV, so that is just a personal adjustment for me.  There was plenty of room for all of our luggage and bags crammed full of stuff for the week.  Having the third row seat folded down for luggage was more for convenience than necessity.  We could have fit the bags and luggage into the third row and the cargo area easily.  It was just more convenient to pull everything out of the back at 4am.  The lift gate was easy to open with the button on the key fob, and I liked that I was able to press a button on the lift and the back gate closed up by itself.

If you need cup and water bottle holders, the Outlander GT has you covered.  There were cup holders in all the doors and the center console.  The doors were large enough to hold the bigger water bottles, not just the small ones.  My younger daughter loved sitting up front and looking up through the sunroof.

I was too excited and sleepy during my trip to pay much attention to my gas milage, but I know I drove 450 miles on less than 1.5 tanks of gas.  The 2015 Outlander GT I drove seats 7, has 6 cylinders, and had lots of available options, such as air bags all around including knees, power outlets(2), USB and Bluetooth connect for smartphones or iPods, just to name a few.

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