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The FREE Complete Bay Area Auto Enthusiast Guide
FUEL-SIPPER MIRAGE PRICED JUST RIGHT!

By NITISH S. RELE – motoringtampabay@gmail.com
Let us start with the good. Base-priced affordably at just $12,995, the 2015 Mitsubishi Mirage is an awesome fuel-saving subcompact hatchback with handy standard cabin niceties. And now for the negatives. The ride is downright jumpy, handling wobbly, engine noise loud and acceleration lethargic.
The front-wheel-drive Mirage gets a 1.2-liter 3-cylinder engine putting out only 74 horsepower @ 6000 rpm and 74 pounds-feet of torque @ 4000 rpm. It is mated to the standard 5-speed manual or the blaring continuous variable transmission. Suspension is handled by a MacPherson strut front and torsion beam rear. The electric power steering enables the driver to easily maneuver the barely 2,000-pound car into tight parking spots.
However, safety is not an issue in the Mirage, which gets standard dual front and side airbags, side curtain airbag, driver side knee airbag, active stability control with antilock brakes, electronic brake distribution and brake assist, hill start assist and tire pressure monitoring system.
Halogen headlights surround the small grille opening while front/rear bumpers, door and tailgate handles and side-view mirrors are color keyed (infrared, in our case) lending the car a pleasant appearance. We must admit the cabin is roomy with 47 cubic feet of cargo space when rear seats are down and 17.2 when up. The analog speedometer/tachometer instrument look is clean as is the dashboard hosting the navigation, audio, temperature and telephone controls. Leather-wrapped tilt steering wheel and shifter, auto a/c, 6-way adjustable driver and 4-way front-passenger seats, eco indicator, driver information center, push button start, power windows and door locks, chromed HVAC and door handles boost the appeal of this little car.
So you want to save gas and do not mind a smaller ride? Then the Mirage could be your vehicle of choice. We eked 40 mpg in city/highway driving (hey, who needs a hybrid?). And the price is just right too. Of course, a subcompact with a bigger engine and more horsepower would be a better, wiser option.

MIRAGE (ES)
Tires: 165/65R14
Wheelbase: 96.5 inches
Length: 148.8 inches
Fuel capacity: 9.2 gallons
City: 37 mpg
Highway: 44 mpg
Web site: www.mitsubishicars.com

CALLING ALL MITSUBISHI DEALERS IN THE WEST CENTRAL FLORIDA AREA: if you would like to be listed here as one of the test-drive dealerships, e-mail us at motoringtampabay@gmail.com