Another day, another expensive and over-styled pavement hopper. Or is it?
You need to know: I reviewed the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross in 2019 (click here) and while its sensible specs and comfy ride won me over, the irritating two-part rear glass and cramped driving position paled in significance to the agonisingly tedious CVT drive train. Happily, this new 1.5T model puts a line through that last (and biggest) complaint.
More info: Next to the rev-happy 2L in-line petrol four-pot, Mitsu S.A. now offers this 1.5L turbo-petrol four-banger with the same power (110kW = 149hp) but superior torque; 250Nm vs 198Nm. That may not sound like much on paper or your screen but it’s the power delivery which plays a critical role in vastly improving the car’s driveability.
Why you should: The 2-litre often needs extra right-foot encouragement to get going and, in most cases, that translates to whiny noises and placid changes in momentum. I won’t go so far as to claim that this turbo-charged motor is completely different but it picks up (and maintains) speed in a far superior manner.
Why you shouldn’t: If you don’t like CVT’s, the Eclipse Cross should be, uhh, crossed off your list immediately as it’s not shipped with anything else. And if you somehow need all-wheel drive, that is only available in combination with the less potent 2.0 model. But for me there’s a different reason not to get this car…
Summary: It’s called an ASX, is also made by Mitsubishi, costs 50 kay less and is no smaller than the glossy marketing material would have you believe. It may only be available as a 2-litre but it has a regular rear windscreen, weighs less, offers sufficient room and – for an extra saving of R15,000 – can be had as a six-speed manual.
|Engine:||1.5L i-4 turbo-petrol|
|Transmission:||CVT (automatic), FWD|
|Avg. cons.:||Approx. 10L/100km (claimed 7.7)|
|0-100km/h:||9.06 seconds (claimed 8.9)|