Mitsubishi Outlander Sport

Known as the 2011 Mitsubishi ASX in Europe and hot off its world debut at the 2010 Geneva motor show, the U.S. Spec Mitsubishi Outlander Sport will make its first North American appearance at the 2010 New York Auto Show.

U.S. spec cars will be powered by a 2.0 liter, four-cylinder MIVEC gas engine and will reportedly be available with either five-speed manual or CVT options. But no power or emissions figures are available yet. European-spec cars will get a choice of either a 1.6-liter gas engine with a five-speed manual transmission (targeting 139g/km of CO2) or a totally new 1.8-liter turbodiesel mated to a six-speed manual gearbox with Auto-Stop-and-Go idle-stop (targeting 145g/km of CO2). U.S. spec cars can expect similar readings. Two- and AWD options will be offered as well. Expect power and torque figures to be revealed closer to the mid-year launch, although we are told that all engines clear Euro 4 and Tier 2 Bin 5 emissions regulations.

Inside, Mitsubishi has lifted trim levels with high-quality plastics, and added a powered leather seat option, a Rockford Fosgate audio system, and a panorama glass roof. But whether the roof will meet international roll-over crash standards is still being determined. It boasts both telescopic and tilt steering functions, and while the car's seats are firm and comfortable, rear seat headroom caters to those under six feet tall. And it gets no less than seven cupholders -- five for front seat passengers. Engineers are especially proud of the Outlander Sport's newly fitted 'super-wide' HID headlight coverage, which doubles the area of road lit on both sides by the lights.

Based on a Mitsubishi engineer's comments, the U.S.-spec version with the 2.0-liter and five-speed manual combination will be the one to go for, and will deliver more driving enjoyment than the CVT-equipped model we drove in Japan. While pricing is still to be announced, one source suggested that the Outlander Sport will undercut all rivals while offering an almost identical driving experience and class-leading ride comfort levels. Mitsubishi has clearly done a lot of work developing the new Outlander Sport. It remains to be seen if it can make a dent in the fiercely competitive small crossover segment.

promo image 2010 New York: The Unofficial Debut of the 2011 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport
Mitsubishi won't officially unveil the U.S. spec version of its 2011 Outlander Sport until tomorrow. However, we captured some photos of...

promo image First Drive: 2011 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport (Japanese Spec)
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promo image 2011 Mitsubishi ASX/Outlander Sport Photo Gallery
Click here to see photos for the 2011 Mitsubishi ASX/Outlander Sport!