2012 Mitsubishi Mirage unveiled ahead of 2011 Tokyo Motor Show

Article by Christian Andrei, on November 9, 2011

Production for the Mitsubishi global small car is set for next year in Thailand, and is bound for the U.S. as early as 2013. The company has dubbed the vehicle as "the Mirage," resurrecting a subcompact nameplate that was dismissed in the early 2000s. The hatchback replaces the Colt, which is being removed from the lineup.

The company is aiming for a fuel economy of 30 70 mpg and a sticker price of about 1 million yen or $12,800. The Mirage depends on an enhanced engine with idle-stop innovation, better aerodynamics and weight loss to increase fuel economy.

It is 10 percent lighter than the Colt. It is run by a 1.0-liter three-cylinder engine coupled with a continuously variable transmission. The company intends to commence manufacturing the Mirage at a new factory in Thailand in March. However, huge flooding in the country could push back the start of production.

By specifying the new 2014 Mirage 5-door with the latest iteration of Mitsubishi's RISE (Reinforced Impact Safety Evolution) impact-absorbing safety cell technology, engineers were able to make the vehicle much safer for its five occupants in case of a collision.

This patented technology employs a body structure that features an impact energy-absorbing front end. Moreover, RISE intensively employs high tensile steel in key areas across the platform. Designers also employed computer-aided design (CAD) software to outline the car’s exterior, thereby allowing them to maximize the aerodynamic efficiency of the 2014 Mirage – resulting to a low coefficient of drag of just 0.28.

Mitsubishi’s intention to make the C30 as aerodynamically efficient as possible is well conveyed through sculpted corners of the rear bumper as well as through the flow of the hood into the A-pillars. For the 2014 model year, the new Mitsubishi Mirage could still be finished in any of the traditional colors -- Black Mica, Gray Mica, Silver Metallic and White Solid – or any of the additional four colors.

The efficiency of the 2014 Mirage is further helped by the installation, as standard, of an electric power steering (EPS) that allows for a more communicative steering feel and a best-in-class turning radius of 15.1 feet. The new Mitsubishi Mirage is laden with several standard features. Even the entry-level version, the Mitsubishi Mirage DE, boasts of features like automatic climate control, keyless entry with panic alarm, tilt steering and power windows with driver's side auto-up/down as well as power side mirrors.

In addition, the Mirage DE is provided with body-colored side mirrors, door handles and tailgate handle, variable intermittent wipers and a sporty rear spoiler. Also, the Mirage DE comes, as standard, with a 60/40 split folding rear seat and a four- speaker 140-watt AM/FM/CD/MP3 sound system with USB/iPod input.

"The Mirage’s design focused on compactness, affordability, and high fuel efficiency in order to fit the needs of emerging markets as an affordable entry-level model as well as needs of advanced markets for fuel efficiency and low-CO2 emission. In addition, the Mirage features good maneuverability and easy drivability inherent to a compact car while also providing a comfortable interior space for five adults. MMC has targeted top-of-class fuel efficiency (Japan market version) of 30km per litre through a variety of measures including painstaking reduction in weight throughout almost every part of the car, reduction in rolling resistance and higher efficiency through detailed improvements to the engine, transmission, brakes and tyres, and an aerodynamic body that reduces air resistance and drag. The new Mirage is due to go on sale first in Thailand in March 2012." said the press release.

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