With many urban families opting to own only one vehicle nowadays, a model capable of doing it all is crucial. And to that end, manufacturers have been catering to the market making practical products like the three-row, all-wheel drive Mitsubishi Outlander crossover, or the Nissan Quest boasting a cavernous 108.4 cubic feet of storage space when the back seats are folded down. We dive into the above and more in today’s blog post.
The third generation Outlander was launched in 2013, and is still quite unlike anything else on the road. This is in part thanks to the Mitsubishi’s progressive Dynamic Shield front fascia design first debuting on this very SUV, comprised of a blacked-out center section of the front bumper surrounded by an X-shaped chrome garnish joining the head and fog lamps.
The higher grades benefit from the safety of the company’s lauded Super All-Wheel Control AWD system ensuring traction in all road conditions. And, as somewhat of a rarity for compact crossovers, the Outlander features a third row for carrying an additional two passengers making it a perfect weekend getaway vehicle. Two engines are available: a fuel-efficient 166-horsepower 2.4-liter four cylinder, or a buttery smooth 224-horsepower 3.0-liter V6.
There was a time when wagons reigned supreme in the family hauler segment, and it’s arguable the versatile form factor is making a comeback. Subaru’s take on the platform, which the automaker calls the “world’s first sport utility wagon,” puts a large focus on the ability to get occupants anywhere they need to go by combining a raised ride height; patented full-time Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive; and a user-selectable “X-Mode” adding torque to the grip wheels thus increasing traction control sensitivity, as well as activating hill descent control that automatically applies the brakes on steep declines.
Redesigned in 2015, the new body style grew slightly in size increasing 0.6 inches in length and 0.7 inches in width, the wheelbase stretching out an additional 0.2 inches. As a result, the cabin became roomier going from 105.4 cubic-feet to 108.1 meaning more shoulder, hip, elbow and legroom. Now standard on all trims is a Lineartronic continuously variable transmission with paddle shifters and step-shift feel.
When we’re strictly talking about moving both people and cargo, not much can truly match the almighty minivan. The Nissan Quest, for example, has seating for seven, power-sliding doors and a low step-in height for loading kids and seniors. As mentioned above, when the quick release fold flat rear benches are in the down position, a massive 108.4 cubic feet of space is revealed perfect for stuffing in anything furniture to recreational gear. Even if all the seats are upright there’s still 25.7 cubic feet on tap.
Some worry about the humdrum appearance of minivans, but don’t worry. The Quest comes with optional 18-inch alloy wheels, tailgate spoiler, full surround glass, chrome accents, and an overall aerodynamic shape helping the vehicle achieve a low 0.32 coefficient of drag.