- Good V-6 power
- Spyder convertible version
- Extensive warranty
- Capable but not nimble handling
The 2008 Mitsubishi Eclipse is far from the most nimble two-door on the planet, but the V-6 versions and the Spyder convertible are engaging to drive.
Though the 2008 Mitsubishi Eclipse doesn't have the sharpest reflexes or handling, it offers an appealing mix of style, and with the V-6 engine, excellent power, and straight-line performance.
The 2008 Mitsubishi Eclipse coupe returns for the 2008 model year with base GS and V-6 GT versions, and a new SE version. The GS continues to be powered by a 2.4-liter, four-cylinder engine rated at 162 horsepower while the sporty GT packs a 263-horsepower 3.8-liter V-6. The SE gets either engine. The four-cylinder cars offer a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic, while the V-6 coupes come with a choice of a six-speed manual or a five-speed automatic.
There’s also the convertible 2008 Mitsubishi Eclipse Spyder, available in similar GS and GT versions. Fuel economy ranges from 20/28 mpg with the four-cylinder coupe to 16/25 mpg with the V-6, automatic-equipped Spyder.
The Mitsubishi Eclipse range has some strong points in its favor. The big V-6 is a grunty, torquey powerplant and Mitsubishi’s manual transmission shifts cleanly. The four-cylinders will play hard to keep up, though, since the Eclipse is a big, heavy two-door. And that’s also what keeps it from greatness, dynamically--since it’s based on the Galant sedan, the front-drive Mitsubishi Eclipse doesn’t have the lightest, most entertaining steering or braking. The ride quality is good, however.
The Mitsubishi Eclipse’s styling is a busy mix of straight lines and morphed, melted curves. It’s less distinctive than, say, the Ford Mustang, and not as pretty as the well-balanced Honda Accord Coupe. Inside, the plain-faced dash is made with good-quality materials and it’s fitted together well. The front seats are supportive; the rear seats are uncomfortable for adults.
The 2008 Mitsubishi Eclipse hasn’t been crash-tested by the government, but it does offer standard anti-lock disc brakes, as well as side impact and side-curtain airbags (except on the Spyder). Stability control is an option on some models.
A premium 650-watt Rockford Fosgate audio system (with a huge eight-inch rear subwoofer) is standard on the convertible Spyder. Sirius satellite radio is an option this year on all Eclipses; heated leather seats and side-view windows and automatic climate control also are available.