The new Mitsubishi Eclipse is different, very different.
Earlier this year, Mitsubishi hinted at plans to revive the Eclipse at the Geneva International Motor Show. Now, that’s all well and good. Exciting, even—if it weren’t for the fact that initial images revealed a five-door crossover instead of something resembling the iconic two-door sports car we’d all been hoping for.
Like everyone, we asked: Why, oh why did you have to go with that moniker? For many, the move was blasphemy. But you know what? We’re ecstatic. Controversial nameplate aside, the Eclipse Cross (yes, the company has finally cleared things up) seems to be a very worthwhile proposition. Recently released dimensions indicate the crossover is pegged just above the ASX in terms of size, and its sleek headlamps, pronounced character lines, and sporty application of Mitsubishi’s new ‘dynamic shield’ design up front suggest it’ll have the aesthetics to hang with the best in the lot.
Exact performance figures are still under wraps, but underneath the hood, you’ll have two engine options: a 1.5-liter turbocharged gasoline mill, and a 2.2-liter turbodiesel. The former comes mated to a CVT with Sport Mode, while the latter is paired with a newly developed eight-speed automatic transmission.
As expected, Mitsubishi has equipped its latest creation with Super All-Wheel Control (S-AWC). Initially developed for the Lancer Evolution, S-AWC is said to provide the Cross with admirable performance over rough roads and in unpredictable weather conditions. Things could thus get interesting between the Cross and the upcoming all-new XV, taking into account both cars’ all-wheel tendencies.
Inside, the dark, minimalist design is accentuated by a generous amount of what looks to be a polished metal trim. Tech-wise, we’re looking at the usual: an array of lasers and sensors for several safety features (lane-departure warning, forward-collision mitigation), and a 7in touchscreen infotainment system. There’s a heads-up display, and the very innovative new touchpad controller might be worth fiddling with as well.
Initial allocation is limited to the UK in early 2018. Ideal size, sporty looks, and versatile performance—so far, the Eclipse Cross seems to have ticked all the right boxes. As to whether or not it can live up to its name? Let’s just say this baby has got some pretty big shoes to fill. We just hope this doesn’t set a precedent. We don’t want Mitsubishi getting any crazy ideas when it comes to reviving the Lancer, you know.
The interior has to look as dynamic as the exterior