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Mitsubishi Lancer Ralliart 2009 Road Test

Wed, 09 Jul 2008

Sarah Thomas, takes to the wheel of a Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback Ralliart 2.0 turbo with twin clutch SST transmission before its official UK launch.

The Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback Ralliart 2.0 turbo with twin clutch SST is a generously proportioned C-segment car.

Due for launch in early 2009 it looks set to provide him and her with a great balance between a good looking and comfortable family car with the high sports performance and handling of the Evo as well as an array of great kit that comes as standard.

Complementing the Lancer Sports Sedan and the Lancer Evolution, The Sportback and Sportback Ralliart have been designed to connect the strategic dots and become the driving force of Mitsubishi Motors passenger car offensive.

With 344 litres of standard boot and 1,394 litres with the back seats down, the Ralliart is one of the largest cars in the competitive C segment, making it an excellent choice for the family who like to get out and about. You also get a lot of car for your money, even at basic trim level as the Sportback Ralliart is kitted out to a very high spec and comes as standard with:

*650 W Rockford FosgateTM premium audio system
*Hard Disk Drive (HDD) 7-inch LCD monitor on-board navigation
*BluetoothTM-enabled hands-free phone kit
*Auto-light control & rain-sensitive auto wipers
*Adaptive front lighting system
*Electronic Total Automobile Control System (“ETACS”)
*Emergency Stop Signal System (Sportback and Sportback Ralliart)

The Ralliart has a de-tuned 2.0 litre 16 valve MIVEC engine which generates 236 bhp. It’s not as aggressively quick as the EVO but it it’s certainly a pokey engine doing 0 – 60 in an impressive 7 seconds. Because the suspension of the Ralliart is softer than the EVO it makes for a far smoother ride particularly as a passenger and does what it needs to do in all situations we put it through.

In traffic it’s quiet and obedient without the jerkiness of the EVO or it’s ability to make your passenger sick in slow moving traffic. On the motorway you feel safe and in control with enough muscle to make you feel like you’re at the very least Prince of the road as and when you need to be.

The Ralliart comes with Sports Shift transmission which is a dual clutch gearbox like a VAG DSG with two settings: Normal and Sports. The Sports setting really came into it’s own on the winding mountain roads of the Spanish countryside. The car really feels like it’s been let out of it’s box in sports mode and enjoys the challenge of a really good camber. The safety features makes you feel confident in putting it through it’s paces at speed – Mitsubishi have tested the car to 5* NCAP requirements but this won’t be confirmed until launch.

The Sportback model will be the first of the Mitsubishi range to carry the Ralliart badge, its name an amalgamation of some corporate brain storming exercise whereby two of the brand attributes identified were: Rally and Art. The Ralliart is a lighter interpretation of the Concept-X/Lancer Evos design theme and also sports the shark like grimace of the new trademark “jet fighter grille” designed for visual identity across the range.

With this car, Mitsubishi have really succeeded in connecting the Lancer and the Lancer Evolution to create a proper family of sporting Lancers for the first time since the late 80s.

The size and kit that comes as standard make this a good car for a family with a sporty attitude to motoring. It would certainly be a shame to waste it with regular city slicking and a weekly shop.

The Mitsubishi Lancer Ralliart - a car that likes to get out and about.

For prices, specs, engines, transmissions, dimensions, performance and alternatives, please click the tabs.<

More at Mitsubishi-motors.co.uk

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