2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse

The 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse is a three-door coupe, in the affordable sports car category. It comes in four different trims, the GS, SE, GS Sport, and the GT. The Eclipse has a sporty design, and provides a comfortable ride, with an attractive interior, and a price that is reasonable.

The GT trim offers an engine with more horsepower, and the Spyder convertible is available for a little more, and is available in the GS Sport, SE, and GT trims.

Specifications

General Info
Vehicle Type: Hatchback Coupe Base Price: $19,499.00
Fuel Tank Capacity: 17.7 gallons (67l) MPG: 20 city / 28 hwy
Dimensions
Length: 180.4 in. (458.2 cm) Wheel Base: 101.4 in. (257.5 cm)
Height: 53.2 in. (135.1 cm) Width: 72.2 in. (183.3 cm)
Curb Weight: 3272 lbs (1484 kg) Ground Clearance: 5.8 in. (14.7 cm)
Luggage Capacity: 15.7 cu ft Maximum Seating: 4 people
Performance
Engine: 2.4L MIVEC Inline 4 SOHC Compression Ratio: 9.5: 1
Horsepower: 162 HP Max RPM: 6000 RPM
Torque: 162 lb-ft @ 4000 rpm Transmission: 5-Speed Manual
Available Trims & Engine
Option:GS Sport A/T MSRP: $24,699; MPG: 20 city / 28 hwy
Option:SE A/T MSRP: $24,699; MPG: 20 city / 28 hwy
Option:GT 3.8L V6 A/T MSRP: $29,089; MPG: 17 city / 25 hwy

Engines

The Eclipse GS, SE, and GS Sport trims use a 2.4-liter, Inline 4 engine, producing 162 horsepower at 6,000rpm. The GS, and GS Sport, are five-speed automatic transmissions, and the SE, is a new four-speed transmission. The Eclipse GT is equipped with a 3.8-liter, V-6, 265 horsepower at 5750 rpm, with a six-speed automatic transmission.

Performance

The Eclipse Sport Suspension provides better handling, by lowering the suspension. The Eclipse engine trails other sports cars in its category, but the V-6 engine offers good acceleration. The Eclipse GT trim provides better engine performance, but is plagued by the car pulling to one side when accelerating.

The Eclipse has sporty details, but the power is lacking. This may be a good car for those who want a sporty design, but do not need a powerful engine. The Eclipse can achieve 20 mpg in the city, and 28 mpg on the highway, and the GT trim gets 17 mpg in the city, and 25 mpg on the highway fuel mileage.

Exterior

The Eclipse has a design inspired by sports cars from years past, with a dynamic body and aggressive, low stance. It features scooped air intakes in the front, with high-intensity discharge headlights, and clear-chrome tail lights. Its sleek lines and dual exhaust are complimented with its striking 18-inch ten-spoke wheels. The Eclipse also features its classic black-out roof, as was featured on the very first Eclipse model. Exterior colors available are Sunset Pearlescent, red, black, silver, white, and gray.

Interior

The interior features are comfortable with racing-inspired bucket seats for the driver and front passenger. Air conditioning, cruise, power windows and locks, keyless entry, six-speaker compact-disc stereo, and auxiliary input come as standard features. The GS Sport trim adds a sunroof, heated leather front seats, and a Rockford Fosgate, 650-watt stereo system. There is 15.7 cubic feet of cargo space available and a second row of seats for two more passengers.

Safety & Reliability

Mitsubishi's steel supporting construction with a rigid uni-body chassis, improves safety, as well as improved cornering. The Eclipse is equipped with an anti-lock braking system, with Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD), and Active Stability Control (ASC), to detect slipping, loss of traction, or loss of control.

Six standard airbags are supplied, and are front-seat mounted. Additional side impact and side curtain airbags also come standard for safety. The 18-inch tires allow for more grip for the road, and Mitsubishi offers a limited powertrain warranty of ten years, or 10,000 miles, emphasizing its belief in Eclipse reliability.

Pros

The Eclipse is a great looking car, with an aggressive, sporty look. It has comfortable seats, and the V-6 engine offers good acceleration and a smooth ride. It is affordable, and has a lengthy powertrain warranty. It would be a safe and reliable commuter car that goes with its sporty look any time. The exterior design is eye-catching, however, for this category and price range, some may find themselves looking elsewhere.

Cons

The Eclipse lacks performance, and its rivals offer a more thrilling ride. The front-wheel drive is uncommon for cars in this category, and the handling is not as engaging. It is a noisy ride, has a cramped back seat, and there is poor visibility. The material used for the interior are made of plastic, and inferior to other models, and the controls are hard to reach. The Mazda Miata (MSRP $23,470; 22 city / 25 hwy) offers more cargo space, and a more powerful engine, at about the same price.

The Hyundai Genesis Coupe (MSRP $23,500; 20 city / 23 hwy) also has a low price, more spacious back seats, more engine horsepower, and rear-wheel drive. The Ford Mustang (MSRP $22,310; 19 city / 22 hwy) and Chevrolet Camaro (MSRP $23,280; 20 city / 28 hwy) are less expensive than the GT V6. No one seems to have any issues with the exterior look of the Eclipse.

The Eclipse has also been compared to few other makes that include the Honda Civic Coupe (MSRP $20,655; 32 city / 39 hwy), the Kia Forte Koup (MSRP $18,600; 26 city / 32 hwy), and the Scion tC (MSRP $19,575; 26 city / 31 hwy).

The 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse is really is an eye-catching car, but for the money, people who want to buy a sportscar, are looking for a more powerful engine under the hood.

Overall Rating
57 out of 100

What others say:

“Lacking some refinement, and pretty big for a sporty car, the Eclipse nonetheless could be fun to drive, especially with its available V-6 drivetrain.”Car Connection

“Not quite as sporty as its looks imply, but any Eclipse corners with ample grip and minimal body lean. Convertibles are impressively solid, suffering no noticeable handling penalty.”Consumer Guide

“Despite the sporty styling, the Eclipse isn't particularly fun to drive. The handling lacks agility, but the car is ultimately secure.”MSN Auto-ConsumerReports

“After more than two decades on the market and four generations, 2012 marks the final year for the Mitsubishi Eclipse coupe and Spyder (convertible).”KBB

“Comfortable front seats; relatively roomy cargo area…High price; convertible's poor outward visibility; sluggish acceleration with GS models; torque steer with GT; small backseat; no telescoping wheel; lackluster interior quality.”Edmunds