Modern vehicles always put emphasis on fuel efficiency; given the country's congested streets in various metropolitan areas, the lower the consumption, the better.
One of the vehicles in the market that takes pride in its fuel efficiency is the Mitsubishi Mirage G4, a subcompact that has been claimed to achieve up to 21 km/l.
The Mirage G4 is actually the trunked brother of the Mitsubishi Mirage hatchback. The addition of the trunk extends the Mirage's dimensions to 4245mm long, while width and height remain the same at 1670mm and 1515mm respectively.
As opposed to the Mirage hatchback, the G4 has a chrome radiator grill along with air inlets to provide cooling for the engine. The front bumper is fitted with fog lamps that have a C-shaped chrome accent on the corner. It also has sharp looking headlights and the hood is incorporated with lines that makes the G4's front look a bit more mature compared to its trunkless sibling.
The big difference in in the G4's side profile given the extension to make the trunk. The rear of the G4 is rather simple and subtle, but it still complements the overall design of the vehicle. Lastly, the G4 sits on a set of 15-inch alloy wheels.
Inside, the G4 GLS has a two-tone interior theme with a shade of black plastics and off-white fabrics. The G4 has three-spoke steering wheel with audio controls. The center console has a touchscreen multimedia entertainment system that enables you to play music, listen to the radio, navigate and monitor tire pressure, among others. Positioned below the touchscreen is the automatic climate control system for comfort and convenience.
All in all, the dashboard gives the G4's interior cabin a classy feel and gives you the satisfaction of getting more than what you paid for.
One thing of note is the G4’s interior space, which surprised me a lot because its way bigger than I thought. The Mirage is a subcompact sedan but judging from what I saw, it was really quite spacious and can easily accommodate five people without compromising comfort. The head and leg room in the rear is ample even when the front seats are slightly reclined. Another thing of note is the G4's trunk space that measures 450 liters. To put things in perspective, the vehicle's trunk can fit four average sized coolers. Better yet, two people can actually fit in the G4's compartment; and yes, we tested it.
Under the hood is a 1.2-liter three-cylinder MIVEC engine that delivers 78 PS at 6000 rpm with 100 Nm at 4000 rpm. Despite the small numbers, the Mirage G4 has ample power. The G4 has no problems whenever you're driving in the city because of its compact size and nimble feel allowing you to easily sqeeze in and out of traffic. The G4 can also handle uphill roads with no problem. When it comes to the open highway, the G4 continues to impress. Cruising at the prescribed max speed limit, the G4's engine remains to be quiet and sort of relaxed.
The steering and handling of the vehicle is decent, though it really isn't a car meant to be driven hard or pushed in the corners. Lane changes and turns are easily and confidently done, though we do wish they could have worked on making the suspension and steering a bit more taut. The G4 also has a soft clutch which is good if you're in traffic, though.
When it comes to fuel economy, the G4 doesn't disappoint because it stood true to its press releases. In moderate to heavy metro traffic, it registered around 13 km/l. On the highway, the fuel economy clocked in at 20 km/l while running with an average speed of 100 km/h. Do take note that these are indicative measurements via the fuel computer; it would be interesting to fully test the accuracy between the actual consumption and the indicated consumption.
Overall, the Mirage G4 GLS is a good car to drive. There may be newer models out in the market with fresher styling and more technology, but the 2014 Mirage G4 GLS's combination of practicality, fuel economy, space and value for money make it an attractive package for entry level car shoppers.