Today is the anniversary of the day I drove my brand new Mirage off the dealer's lot with 236 miles on the clock.
So far, I have three big complaints, plus one I've already fixed:
1. Lack of adjustment of rear alignment.
I know this has been brought to the attention of Mitsubishi and they're now working on a solution, but this was a very disappointing thing to learn when I first noticed I had excessive rear camber, which became excessive toe-in after being lowered. If it could be shimmed, I would have done so already, but I have to wait until a solution is made, while dealing with increased fuel consumption and tire wear that comes from misalignment.
2. Electronic throttle lag.
Drive-by-wire is inherently less responsive than conventional cable throttles. Couple this with a manual transmission, and it does make it a bit more difficult, where you have to change your foot timing to release and press the throttle earlier than normal. If I could, I'd swap in a cable throttle body.
3. Numb steering feel.
The electronic power steering is light and precise, but it lacks feel. It doesn't connect the driver to the road very well, so you can't quite tell what the tires are doing. I'd love to just gut out the electronic assist and convert it to fully manual.
4. Body roll.
In stock trim, the combination of soft suspension and soft eco tires made it feel like it would either roll over or the tires would separate from the wheels in hard cornering. Better rubber and stiffer springs goes a LONG way in improving the car's handling characteristics.
That being said, it does have its perks:
Weighing in at under 2000 lbs (1973 lbs for my 2014 DE 5-speed), it's one of the lightest cars you can buy today, just 40 lbs heavier than a Lotus Elise. This gives it a LOT of potential for handling upgrades, and makes power upgrades much more noticeable.
2. Slippery 0.27-.031 drag coefficient
When paired with the light weight, this really helps makes the most out of every horsepower, along with amazing highway fuel economy.
3. Fuel economy, easily 45+ MPG
My lifetime average sits at about 49 MPG, and I've gotten 60 MPG on some highway trips when traffic and lights agree. Hybrid mileage without the expensive and heavy batteries? Eat your heart out, Prius.
4. Impressive list of standard features.
My car's only option is Bluetooth. Standard, I get automatic climate control, remote locks, and power everything.
5. Comfortable seating.
The seats are supportive, comfortable, and the headrest is actually a headrest, not requiring you to stare at the ceiling to rest your head on it.
6. Featherweight clutch
Having driven in 5 hours of rush hour traffic yesterday, I am infinitely thankful for its light clutch.
Final score? 8/10. Mitsubishi brought back the simple, lightweight, efficient cars that many of us loved in the 90s, and for that I thank them, especially for making it very aerodynamic. That combination won me over. I can't fault them too much for the electronic throttle lag and steering feel, since that's me being picky, but the lack of foresight in regards to the rear alignment definitely dings their score.