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Outlandish Outlander: Hitting the infotainment in the Mitsubishi Outlander GT

Sections: Aftermarket, Car Audio, Infotainment, Installations, Navigation

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Mitsubishi Outlander GT head unit.  Yep, that's the phone screen.  That's it.

Mitsubishi Outlander GT head unit. Yep, that’s the phone screen. That’s it.

Now that I have lived with the 2014 (not to be confused with the 2013) Mitsubishi Outlander GT, I can delve into discussing about the infotainment set up. First the good — and it is really good: The amazing Rockford Fosgate audio system.

The system utilizes tweeters set up high in the A-pillars, and woofers down low in the doors. Yet, even without a center channel, there is a semblance of a decent soundstage. That would be courtesy of the DTS Neural Surround Sound. The most of those 710 watts of Rockford power get sent to the built-in Rockford 10-inch subwoofer in a small enclosure grafted into the cargo hold. It is perfect. It takes up nearly no room, yet shows itself off nicely every time you pop the trunk. Moreover, here is an OEM system that finally brings aftermarket performance to the vehicle. The only thing I can remember that came close was Ford’s Shaker 1000 system in the Mustang — and I remember that system to be a bit more muddy in the lower-midbass region. The Rockford system in this Mitsubishi is a perfect match.

The bad news is the head unit. Two major flaws: First, the inability of the the unit to recognize voice commands. Sure, the ability is there to manage voice commands, but Nuance Dragon NaturallySpeaking Home 12.0, English or Lernout & Hauspie this is not. There is a voice training option for the head unit, but who really has the patience? I would put up with it if I owned the vehicle and I had the phenomenal Rockford system.

The other problem is the inability to display phone data on the head unit. There is Bluetooth control, but not even a way to send or end a call. All telephony is done from the steering wheel. The system wants you to use voice controls, but they proved too obtuse to navigate. Sometimes, it is simpler to scroll through a menu on your infotainment screen of previous calls than to fight with the voice recognition.

The navigation system did work well, but was slow sometimes to bring up the “Destination Input” screen. The fields remained unhighlighted when first starting to enter info, so you have to patiently wait before you can enter your destination.

All Mitsubishi has to do is replace that simple Double-DIN head unit with an upgraded model. Heck, buy an Entune from a Double-DIN 4Runner and call it day. Yeah, I know it isn’t that simple, but there is so much to love about that Rockford system. All it needs is some modern infotainment to control it.  After all, Mitsubishi, you guys build this.   

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