Review: Mitsubishi Mirage (2013)
Smart styling, spacious interior and strong three-cylinder 1.2 petrol engine. Emits less than 100g/km of CO2, which makes it eligible for free road tax.
Disappointing to drive. Steering is slow and lacks feel. Not as good as similarly priced hatchbacks like the Volkswagen Up or Kia Picanto.
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Mitsubishi Mirage (2013): At A Glance
- New prices start from £11,075
- Contract hire deals from £139.19 per month
- Insurance Groups are between 15–16
- On average it achieves 90% of the official MPG figure
Mitsubishi went back to the drawing board with its Colt replacement, ditching the old upright styling and injecting some much needed flair into its small car range.
Lighter, faster and funkier than its predecessor, the Mirage is the most aerodynamic car in its class with a drag coefficient of 0.27Cd and has been designed from the ground up with low emissions in mind.
The car weighs just 845kg thanks to the use of high-tensile steel in the body and power comes from either a 71PS 1.0-litre chain cam three-cylinder engine with 88Nm torque or an 80PS 1.2 with 106Nm torque.
The real highlight however is the economy. The 1.2-litre model features an automatic engine start/stop system and all models get low rolling resistance tyres and regenerative braking. As a result the Mirage emits less than 100g/km of CO2 and qualifies for free road tax. Claim fuel consumption starts at 67.3mpg for the entry level 1.0-litre engine and rises to 68.9mpg for the 1.2.
The cabin has plenty of space and gets five-doors as standard. Boot space is a generous 235 litres, which increases to 600 with the seats folded.
The Mirage also features an impressive amount of safety kit, with the use of Mitsubishi's RISE safety body design - Reinforced Impact Safety Evolution – which uses a strong monocoque structure made from ultra-high tensile steel. Brake assist, stability control and an emergency warming system that will blink the hazard lamps under heavy braking is also included on all models.
There are three trims on offer – Mirage 1, 2 or 3 – and top spec models get 15-inch alloy wheels, keyless entry and automatic air con. A CVT automatic is also available with the Mirage 3.
What does a Mitsubishi Mirage (2013) cost?
Mitsubishi Mirage (2013): What's It Like Inside?
The interior of the Mirage is impressive with a nice and simple approach taken to the cabin design, which gives the dashboard a clean and purposeful appearance. All of the controls and easy to find and there’s no scattergun approach to the button layout, like many of the new cars on the market.
On the downside, the quality of the plastics is poor, and despite the impressive layout, the dashboard has an overall appearance of being cheap and tinny.
The cheap and cheerful approach has also been taken with the seat fabrics, which are not the best we’ve ever experienced. They’re not uncomfortable per say, but are rather unpleasant to the touch; however, that said, the Mirage will easily accommodate four adults and everyone get plenty of head and leg room.
The rear seats are particularly impressive and will prove adequate for carrying six footers on long trips. The Mirage also comes with five-doors as standard, which means your passengers will not have to scramble in and out, while leaving muddy footprints on the back of your seats.
There’s no shortage of practical storage spaces either, with an abundance of bins and cubby holes to store drinks, maps and anything else you want to travel with. The boot is a decent size too, with 235 litres, but there’s no double-layer floor – like you get in the Volkswagen Up – and the carpet floor is rather flimsy. It's worth noting that the Mirage doesn't get a spare wheel either.
Child seats that fit a Mitsubishi Mirage (2013)Our unique Car Seat Chooser shows you which child car seats will fit this car and which seat positions that they will fit, so that you don't have to check every car seat manufacturer's website for compatibility.
What's the Mitsubishi Mirage (2013) like to drive?
The Mitsubishi Mirage has two strong petrol engines – 1.0 and 1.2 – and both return good economy and impressive power. The better engine of the two is the 1.2, which presses along with purpose and returns a claimed 68.9mpg. It also has 106Nm of torque, which pulls strongly through the gears with a nice three-cylinder thrum. The five-speed manual ‘box is smooth and slick too, although the power delivery isn’t the smoothest we’ve experienced and noted a few stutters as we went up the powerband.
We also had some issues with the Mirage's steering and handling, with both proving to be a disappointment. The first issue is with the steering; it is slow and lacking in any sort of meaningful feedback, which makes cornering an unnerving experience. In fact, tackle a corner at pace and you’ll find yourself guessing at how much lock you need, such is the lack of feeling in the wheel.
Things get worse at roundabouts, where full lock is needed to persuade the car around each turn as the Mirage’s lack of front end grip become all too apparent.
The problems are compounded by the car's soft suspension, which results in copious amounts of body roll. Admittedly, the suspension isn’t too problematic in a town or city, but head out to the open road and the Mirage will wobble and lurch with the grace of a cross channel ferry in all but the slightest of bends. The suspension also takes an instant dislike to any undulations in the road, crashing heavily on potholes and bouncing over drain covers.
It’s a real pity that the Mirage is so poor on the road, because it is a nice looking car with a large and practical cabin. Ok, we accept that small cars like this are not meant for high speed driving, but that really doesn’t forgive the Mirage’s many shortcomings.
The old Mitsubishi Colt was a car that won many fans with its fun and zippy handling, but all of that has been lost here and replaced with lacklustre handling that ultimately flaws the entire car.
|1.0||67 mpg||13.6 s||96 g/km|
|1.2||58–69 mpg||11.7–12.7 s||96–111 g/km|
|1.2 Automatic||57–69 mpg||12.8–13.5 s||95–114 g/km|
Real MPG average for a Mitsubishi Mirage (2013)
Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.
Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.
Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.
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