The Mitsubishi Mirage doesn't need introductions at this point. Along with its sedan sibling the G4, this subcompact hatchback has been adored by many for its easy-to-drive character since 2012, among other reasons.
Prices for the Mirage start at P704,000 for the manual variant, while the CVT is priced at P765,000. If you're looking at used examples, then they will go from P250,000 to almost P400,000.
As with all cars, the Mirage has its fair share of pros and cons.
1. Funky color choices
Yes, colors do not influence the car's performance and function. What they do is extend the owner's personality, or add flair to a ride.
The vibrant hues available with the Mirage will surely stand out from neutral colors most cars wear. The Mirage can be had in sunrise orange, medium blue mica, and wine red.
Before the Mirage's update in 2016, the car was also available in amethyst purple. If you're drawn to this striking shade, then you'd do a bit more searching in the used car market as this color of Mirage is rare.
2. Decent cargo capacity
Neither cramped nor cavernous, the Mirage's cargo area is the average for this class of car. The rear seats can fold in a 60-40 split when bulkier items need to be carried — an advantage against the G4's fixed rear perches.
No feature on the Mirage is complete without that F-word. Its 1.2-liter three-cylinder MIVEC engine makes 78hp and 100Nm of torque, mated to a five-speed manual, or a continuously variable transmission (CVT).
The engine and CVT transmission pairing can achieve up to an estimated 23.1kpl. Since real-world figures differ from the claimed numbers, the Mirage can really do 12 to 14kpl, according to the owners of the purple Mirage seen above.
4. Decent spec
The manual-transmission Mirage wears a urethane steering wheel, features a 2-DIN radio with iPhone, auxiliary, USB, and Bluetooth connection, and uses manual climate controls. When put in other words, the basics.
The CVT car has a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, which sit ahead of a high-contrast instrument cluster with chrome accents. Automatic climate, and push-button engine start, which is also a part of the keyless operation system, are also part of the kit list.
The keyless feature allows the driver to lock or unlock the vehicle without having to unfurl the key from his pocket, or bag.
Owners of that purple Mirage and this Mirage G4 reflect the car's reliability. Those cars have played the roles of daily driver and road tripper, yet still keep on kicking without skipping a beat.
This model has been panned by motoring media in first-world nations like the US and the UK. They cited the cabin's unrefined characteristics, with excessive wind, engine, and road noise at speed.
Their comments could be true to some extent given the model's almost 10-year-old design, which is also a con for those seeking the newest names.
However, the overseas journalists could have been accustomed to more refined, first-world-exclusive models. The Mirage, after all, was designed to be sold globally, so it had to be made as cost-efficient as possible.
Don't let the Mirage's age and the haters put you off. This hatchback is decently practical, reliable, and fuel-efficient. For a small, basic runabout, that's all that matters, really.
Photos from Mitsubishi, Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corporation (MMPC)