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First look: Mitsubishi's character-building Colt

Flip top: The Colt features a two-piece electric folding hardtop roof.

Mitsubishi Australia is looking closely at adding the classy Colt cabrio

23 Jan 2006

MITSUBISHI is "95 per cent certain" the stylish Colt cabrio will join the range here by September.

Although specific trim and specification details are still being finalised, Mitsubishi Motors Australia Ltd spokesman, Kevin Taylor, said the stylish two-door could arrive by September in what will be a year of change for the Colt line-up.

Next month a more powerful, refreshed Colt range arrives and from August a Ralliart version will join the line-up.

Mitsubishi will also add an entry five-speed manual to the range at the same time.

It is the first time a manual has been offered in the Colt, which currently comes standard with a CVT transmission.

However, initial focus will be on the CZT cabrio, which debuts at the Geneva motor show in March.

In Australia only one model is likely to be sold, the turbo-charged CZT model, mated to a five-speed manual gearbox.

Pricing is tipped to be around $34,000 area, which puts the Colt in Holden Tigra and Peugeot 206CC territory.

The CZT cabrio is built on the five-door Colt platform, which allows 2+2 seating and utilises the five-door’s 2500mm wheelbase to afford a roomy interior.

The longer wheelbase allowed the adoption of a stylish electric hardtop roof as well as a reasonably sized boot.

To cope with the folding hardtop the body has been reinforced and the chassis has been specifically tuned for sports driving.

Power is provided by a 112kW/210Nm 1.5-litre MIVEC (Mitsubishi Innovative Valve timing and lift Electronic Control) turbo-charged engine shared with the three-door CZT.

21 center imageMitsubishi claims it will accelerate from zero to 100km/h in 8.4 seconds and has a top speed of 202km/h.

Mr Taylor said the CZT would be a halo model for the revised Colt range.

The Ralliart Colt will be on display at the Melbourne motor show.

The revised Colt range will get a new grille, improved interior trim and a new Euro 4 compliant engine.

The all-alloy 1.5-litre will deliver 80kW at 6000rpm, up 8kW, and 145Nm at 4000rpm, up 13Nm, while delivering cleaner emissions and better fuel economy.

The updated five-speed five-door Colt delivers 8.0L/100km in the city, 5.1L/100km on the highway and a combined fuel figure of 6.2L/100km.

A base three-door model from Europe has been ruled out because unfavourable currency exchange rates.

"It would be too expensive," Mr Taylor said.

"We were always after an entry car but the only three-door that’s available comes out of Europe." The cabriolet has been developed in a collaborative effort between MMC, Mitsubishi Design Europe and Pininfarina SpA.

CZC production is due to start at Pininfarina’s Bairo plant, near Turin in March.

Pininfarina will source the platform and the Colt family carry-over components from Mitsubishi Motors’ NedCar plant in The Netherlands. Pininfarina will provide the specific structural reinforcement and the body-in-white assembly.

MMC is calling the Colt cabrio the spiritual successor to Mitsubishi Motors’ first ever show car, the Colt 600 Convertible, which was unveiled at the 1962 Tokyo Motor Show.

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