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Opinions on the new Mitsubishi Mirage econo car?

Yes, the Smart Car makes very little sense except on tight narrow streets and for parallel parking. One of the funniest Youtube videos I have seen was some poor person who had no clue how to parallel park miserably fail at parking a Smart. This went on like 20 minutes and it became a spectator sport watching from the nearby apartments. I think it was practically still in the middle of the street when they gave up and just parked it where it sat.

But from what I am seeing, there are A LOT of small economical cars of only a slightly higher price and small mileage penalty compared to the Mirage. It seems that this is not really a good value for the price. If it were cheaper, it might be but it isn’t. Although I keep cars until they are pretty much dead, the resale value on one of the others would probably be a lot better too if this were a concern.

The fact that many parts are not even painted worries me. It might not if I live in Arizona but any place with a winter climate has to worry about the salt eating their car. Rust proofing was the big weakness with the Geo Metro if you ask me.

The Smart Car was designed for European cities. The original had a 3 cylinder diesel and a stick shift. I saw many in Paris, France, where parking spaces are small and at a premium. The car would even fit in a space for motorcycles.

In North America the Smart car makes little sense, as pointed out.

I don’t know about now but back in 1988, 1990, and 1991 I saw many Mitsubishi’s on the west coast yet none in the midwest. My aunt and uncle had one pf the sedans . . . forget which model . . . that drove very nicely.


Don’t overlook giving a yest drive to a Ford Fiesta hatchback. A friend has one and I have been surprised how functional it is along with reasonable comfort for such an econobox. She has had had it for several years with absolutely no repairs needed. She has even loaded a week’s camping gear in it with no trouble.


I hit send too soon. LOL. I was saying that Mary says she gets consistently high gas mileage both in town and highway with her Fiesta.

The Fiesta is on my list for when the time comes too. I would consider the Fiesta, Rio, Spark, and maybe the Dart. I am not a Chrysler person but maybe someone could talk me into one.

I just looked at the site and the Fiesta has the 5 speed manual. I would do the ecoboost 1.0L for economy as well as performance. The only thing I don’t like is that the Sync system is included. I have a friend with this and it has been nothing but problems. He says the newer models are fixed but I would rather just have a regular radio and all.

The Smart car is only smart for those selling it. For those buying it made them fell warm and fuzzy. As stated earlier, for the money there are better choices.

The Rio is easily the better car, roomier, more substantial, better equipped. The Mirage, like the similarly cheap and crude Nissan Versa is a model sold primarily in the developing nations. Another very good, simple little car is the Mazda2. The Spark has a little too much of the smell of an Aveo and Metro. Very bargain basement. Sure, you can likely get a Spark/Metro/Versa really cheap, but the savings over a Mazda2/Rio/Accent won’t be massive and the owner experience will be much worse. Ultimate reliability and longevity will also likely be worse.

My brother has driven for a variety of courier and delivery businesses for about twenty years and he won’t subject himself to the cheapest of the cheap anymore. I think he has a Scion xB now because his company requires slightly more room than the cars you’re looking at (they deliver some bigger packages.)

@MarkM It seems a little useless to bring inactive posts back to life. The original poster has left the building.

Hmm. Something else popped it up onto the first page of my messages. Wonder why?

@cwatkin the Hyundai/Kia 100k mile warranty is powertrain only. My SO, however, extended it to 100k bumper to bumper when she bought. We negotiated getting the clear bra thrown in for free if she upped the warranty - and the clear bra cost the same as the increased warranty did. She wanted a clear bra anyway because new cars have paint all the way to the road and she wanted to protect against road chips, so essentially she got a free warranty coverage increase out of it.

Now, on a base model car, if you don’t care about the clear bra, this may not be worth it. If you get one with navigation or something else that would be expensive if it broke, then it’s a pretty good idea even if you don’t care about the clear bra.

Yeah, it’s an old posting but it’s here and so am I. At one time when the Spark first started being sold in Mexico, I checked for crash ratings. No test in the USA, but in Europe it got a 4 for front-end crash.

I just found this thread had come back. Anyway, I looked at the Mazda 2 and found this:

It looks like it is a good option for economy and a decent car overall but at the end they make mention that the Mazda 3 is a much nicer car for not much more and the MPG penalty isn’t that much. Mazda has always made a good car so these are definitely something to consider. How is the direct injection going these days? I know many are going this route but there are some issues with the inject valves getting crudded up. I understand this isn’t a DIY job to fix. How big of an issue is this?

My SO test drove a 2 when she was shopping for a new car. She wanted something small because she does a lot of parking in packed ramps. She didn’t like it at all. She found it to be uncomfortable and overly cheap in pretty much every respect.

She ended up going with a Hyundai Veloster, which is a car you might want to check out. The base models aren’t very expensive at all – and even the fully loaded ones are a lot cheaper than you’d think they’d be.

Good little car. A little nervous at speed in bumpy corners, but that’s to be expected from the compact market unless you’re getting something like a BMW 1-series.

I know this is an old thread but several people started a discussion about the Mirage on the Geo Metro Forum. It seems to be what many there consider to be the modern day equivalent of the Metro. There are a couple members who use them for a courier service and have LOTS AND LOTS of miles on them and have never done anything more than routine maintenance. They also state it is the only car in this class with a 100,000 mile warranty.

I mentioned the Versa and a couple others and they seemed to feel that the Mirage was still a better bet. I guess the Versa isn’t much of a car. The Dart was also panned because of reliability issues. One member had to point out “It is pretty bad when people driving Geo Metros rag on another car brand.”

Anyway, the Mirage seems to have a good number of strong backers on that forum. It will be interesting to see how they hold up over the long term.

Also, this is another review that doesn’t just trash on the Mirage: No, it isn’t a luxury car but look at what it has to offer when you realize it is the same price (inflation adjusted) as some real junkers from the past like the Hyundai Excel and the like.

The warranty on that mini-Mitsu is good–in theory.
In practice, it could be difficult for many people to find a dealership near them, due to the ongoing changeover by many dealers to different brands.

I can tell you that, as a result of this trend, the closest Mitsu dealership to my house is 27 miles. Since I can find dealerships for virtually every other make of car w/in 7-15 miles of my house, the distance factor alone would make me hesitate to buy a Mitsubishi. If that dealership gives up its Mitsu franchise, then the next closest dealership would be ~40 miles away.

And, since they are currently circling the drain in The US, Mitsubishi could well follow the examples of Daihatsu, Suzuki, and Isuzu’s automotive division, and simply leave the US marketplace.

The long warranty is only on the POWERTRAIN; the rest of the car is not all that reliable. Service will be a problem; even independent garages may have difficulty due to the unfamiliarity.

We once had a Dodge (Mitsubishi) Colt and the Chrysler dealers were baffled by some of the problems and independents did not like them because they could not make any money repairing them by using a flat rate manual.

P/S. Consumer Reports rated this car so poorly as to be “not recommended” and that had nothing to do with reliability. It was substandard in every way!

Something Illusory And Unattainable Like A Mirage. That’s What My Dictionary Says.

Good Name For The Vehicle.
I used the manufacturer’s dealer locator and my nearest dealer is 245 miles from my location.
I’m not 100% certain I’ve ever seen a Mitsubishi car.

“I’m not 100% certain I’ve ever seen a Mitsubishi car.”

Even in NJ, which has more cars per mile of roadway than any other state, Mitsubishis are not exactly common. As I may have mentioned previously, on a typical day I will see more Porsches than Mitsubishis on the road.