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Tiny, easy to drive and affordable, Mirage is designed for city living and low fuel consumption.
Mitsubishi revived the Mirage nameplate in 2013 with a small five-door hatchback that at the time was one of the few micro cars to achieve a five-star ANCAP safety rating. A sedan was added in mid-2014, but the hatch has been far more popular and Mitsubishi discontinued the sedan in late 2016.
Over its five-year lifespan Mirage has had some minor facelifts and equipment upgrades, although its fundamentals have not changed.
Tiny, easy to drive and affordable, Mirage is designed for city living and low fuel consumption, with a user-friendly nature. Like most cars in this class, it’s been built to a price with neat but very basic trimming, plenty of plastic and limited sound deadening. However, we’ve seen nothing to suggest this has any effect on the car’s durability or mechanical reliability.
Mirage has a very simple, straightforward mechanical format.
The main model lines are the ES and slightly better dressed LS, plus a few Sport versions. Standard equipment includes air-conditioning and power windows and is on a par with most others in the class. Equipment levels improved with later versions.
Mirage has a very simple, straightforward mechanical format, employing a basic 1.2-litre three-cylinder petrol engine with Mitsubishi’s MIVEC variable valve timing system. This produces 57kW of power at 6000rpm and 100Nm at 4000rpm. It’s a high-revving engine so you do notice some engine noise.
For such a small car, Mirage’s cabin space is surprisingly good and its interior layout creates an open feel.
On the road this rudimentary mechanical set-up and lightweight body do the job expected from this type of car. It has no trouble keeping pace with the traffic and it cruises along comfortably at highway speeds. The small turning circle and light steering make it extremely manoeuvrable. The suspension thumps a bit at times, although it tends to be heard more than felt. Note that it only carries a space-saver spare wheel.
For such a small car, Mirage’s cabin space is surprisingly good and its interior layout creates an open feel. It will easily accommodate two adults and three children but it would be extremely tight trying to seat three adults in the back. The seats are flat but comfortable enough for this type of vehicle, while throughout the cabin there are number of convenient storage compartments.
Australia’s Best Cars research found that Mirage is one of the cheapest cars on the market to service and maintain. Regular oil changes are important, and the CVT requires the transmission fluid to be changed every 90,000km. Check for signs of accident damage and poor-quality repairs, as well as normal wear items such as tyres and brakes.
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Mitsubishi tends to have long model cycles, and so with the same basic structure the five-star ANCAP safety rating is carried through from the original test. It has six airbags and electronic stability control but lacks some of the advanced safety features that an all-new model requires for five stars under the latest ANCAP criteria.
Driven normally, expect to average 5.0-6.0L/100km.
Being a micro car, Mirage has not been given a listed towing capacity from Mitsubishi.
Nissan Micra, Suzuki Alto, Holden Barina Spark and Kia Picanto.
ES 5dr man (2013-18) $7400-$11,000
ES 5dr CVT (2013-18) $8200-$12,800
ES 4dr man (2014-16) $8800-$10,200
ES 4dr CVT (2014-16) $10,000-$11,600
LS 5dr man (2013-16) $7900-$9600
LS 5dr CVT (2013-18) $8700-$13,600
LS 4dr CVT (2014-16) $9900-$12,300
Sport 5dr man (2013-14) $7900-$8500
Sport 5dr CVT (2013-14) $8800-$9400