Wednesday, July 6, 2011

2012 Mitsubishi Sports Car

2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder is a peppy convertible with sleek, retro styling and a number of luxurious extras for driver and passengers, all at an affordable price tag. Mitsubishi has announced that 2012 will be the last production year for the Spyder with production ceasing in August 2011, so this model year represents the final curtain call for this reasonably priced two-door sport convertible.

Engine power in the Spyder is definitely nothing to write home about, with a measly 162 horsepower available on the base and GS Sport models and a respectable 265 horses under the hood of the GT. The Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder’s moderate weight allows it to provide reasonably brisk acceleration and decent pickup, but the four-cylinder models may have difficulty with uphill grades or heavy loads in some instances. The small turning radius and sturdy suspension provide adequate handling under most city driving conditions.

There’s nothing quite like a convertible. The Spyder capitalizes on this truth with a host of features that make this vehicle even more fun to drive, from the available leather seats in the GT model to the cruise control and rear-view backup camera that come standard in every trim level. Power windows and locks, power folding top and the Bluetooth hands-free interface provide added convenience and push-button ease for drivers. Eighteen-inch alloy wheels and heated front seats are available on some models.

While high performance is sadly lacking even in the GT models, the 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder is fun and easy to drive. Best suited for city driving, it offers respectable gas mileage at 20 mpg city and up to 27 mpg in highway testing. Handling is about average for its weight class with some difficulty in acceleration when coming out of a hard turn. The suspension is adequate to provide a smooth ride, but is best suited to the urban environment rather than off-road escapes.

The 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder will be sorely missed when production stops on this iconic convertible. While the Spyder never lived up to its sports car exterior, its price and features made it a favorite among style-conscious drivers and passengers. Even without the performance and pickup of more powerful vehicles, the Spyder is a bargain at the price and offers solid transportation in a sleek and sporty package.