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Mitsubishi gives Mirage the boot

Boots and all: The Mitsubishi Mirage sedan is priced from $14,490 plus on-road costs, which is $1500 more than the equivalent hatch.

Sedan version of Mitsubishi Mirage arrives as second-cheapest sedan on the market


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3 Jul 2014

MITSUBISHI Motors Australia has introduced a sedan version of its re-born Mirage micro car, priced from $14,490, plus on-road costs, making it one of the cheapest sedans on the local market.

Eschewing the Attrage nameplate that was mooted when the vehicle was revealed in May last year, Mitsubishi is offering the booted Mirage with one powertrain and two specifications – base ES and top-spec LS.

The ES kicks off the range, matching 1.2-litre three-cylinder petrol engine with a five-speed manual gearbox from $14,490, plus on-road costs. This price rises by $2000 to $16,490 when optioned with the continuously variable transmission (CVT).

In ES manual guise, the Mirage Sedan commands a $1500 price premium over its hatchback twin, while the ES CVT is $2000 dearer than its more compact hatch equivalent.

The range-topping LS is only available with a CVT at $17,490, which is $1000 more than the price of the Mirage LS hatch.

At this end of the micro/light car segments, the Mirage Sedan has a few competitors, including the Nissan Micra-based Almera from $16,990, as well as slightly larger fare such as the Honda City from $15,990, Holden's Barina sedan from $15,490, the Hyundai Accent at $16,990.

Pricier options in this field also include the Toyota Yaris YRS sedan from $18,190 and Kia Rio Si sedan at $21,690.

Only the Malaysian-built Proton S16 GX sedan undercuts the Mirage, with a driveaway price of $13,990.

The new addition to the Mirage range is 4245mm long and 1670mm wide, which is 535mm longer and 5mm wider than the hatch on which it is based, while the wheelbase is stretched 100mm longer on the booted version.

This has made a difference in the cabin with the sedan offering 194mm more legroom in the rear (944mm) than the hatch, while front-seat passengers have an extra 157mm to stretch their legs with 1058m of legroom.

Naturally, the sedan has more generous cargo capacity, with 450 litres of boot space compared with 235 litres in the hatch.

While 450 litres is generous for such a small car, it trails the Nissan Almera which can carry 490 litres and the Honda City which claims a massive 536-litre cargo capacity, larger than many mid-size and large models.

Powering the tiny sedan is the same 57kW/100Nm 1.2-litre three-cylinder engine under the bonnet of the hatch, with official combined fuel consumption of 4.9 litres per 100 kilometres, up 0.3L compared with the 50kg-lighter hatch's 4.6L/100km figure.

The CVT features a gear-shift control calibration for greater control during accelerating and less transmission slip. A neutral idle function helps to save fuel and also lowers vibration at idle for a quieter cabin.

Other measures that have improved cabin noise include extra sound insulation in the front fenders, the floor, A- and C-pillars and the dash panel, while a new engine mounting system has also cut engine noise and vibration.

The company said the dynamics of the sedan have been re-tuned for a more comfortable ride over different road surfaces and the springs and dampers have also been calibrated to suit the sedan body-style.

In base ES guise, standard features include air conditioning, Bluetooth phone and audio streaming with controls on the steering wheel, USB input, power mirrors and windows, a “black suede touch knit” interior trim, chrome highlights and 15-inch alloy wheels.

The LS adds climate control air-conditioning, push-button start, dusk-sensing headlights, rain-sensing wipers, leather steering wheel, tinted windows and black embossed knit trim.

On the safety front, the Mirage features six airbags, including side curtain units, as well as hill-start assist, a hydraulic brake assist

the Emergency Stop Signal which triggers the hazard warning lights under heavy braking and the RISE (Reinforced Impact Safety Evolution) body structure that absorbs and redistributes force away from the passenger cell in a crash.

Mitsubishi Motors Australia marketing director Tony Principe said the new sedan would appeal to light-car buyers looking for extra space.

“The new Mirage Sedan balances value, style and safety with low running costs, making it the ideal choice for customers looking to downsize into a smaller, more fuel-efficient car without compromising on features and space,” he said.

“The Mirage hatch has been embraced by Australians since it was launched last year, and the new Mirage sedan provides buyers with another well-equipped and attractive option at a price point that’s hard to beat.”

Mitsubishi is launching the Mirage sedan during a tough period for cars in the micro car market, with year-to-date sales down 33 per cent in the overall segment.

The company has sold 3916 Mirages in the first six months of 2014, which represents a 29.3 per cent drop on the 5535 sold in the same period last year.

The only car in the segment to experience year-to-date sales growth is the Fiat 500, which has achieved 1473 units – up by 142.3 per cent on 2013.

Earlier this week, Mitsubishi announced that it had signed a deal with Fiat Chrysler Group to sell the Mirage Sedan as a Chrysler-badged model in markets including China and Mexico.

2014 Mitsubishi Mirage Sedan pricing*
ES (a)$16,490
LS (a)$17,490
*Excludes on-road costs.

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