Isn't there a European-spec 5-speed transmission (or something like that?) that has different gear ratios or maybe a different final drive ratio...that would mean a few hundred RPMs less in 5th gear? That would be a great no-cost option for Mitsubishi.
I have thought about a massively taller 6th gear before and wondered if it would work. Imagine a 5-speed Mirage turning 2000 RPMS at 65mph with the cruise control on. Now that would be great and I think it would work fine on level ground.
Now imagine that same situation with the car going up a slight grade at 65mph with the cruise control on. Does this engine have enough power at 2000 RPMs to maintain that speed? Obviously the CVT just bumps up the RPMS in this situation, but in a manual you would almost have to have the cruise disengage at some point to force the driver to downshift. Maybe that's the reason the engineers have decided to keep the freeway RPMs up on a 5-speed.
...and someone clue me in on what a "twin stick" is.
View my fuel log 2015 Mirage ES 1.2 manual: 51.8 mpg (US) ... 22.0 km/L ... 4.5 L/100 km ... 62.2 mpg (Imp)