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STYLING | 6 out of 10
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The Car Connection
The 2015 Mitsubishi Mirage uses anonymity as its styling theme; the bland front end and generic body curves combine to make it all but invisible on the road. Many of its design cues have been drawn from Mitsubishi's other vehicles, with swept-back headlamps and a slit-like grille, but it's lacking in personality.
But what Mitsubishi’s stylists have sacrificed in distinctive looks has gone to the service of low wind resistance, minimizing the energy required to move the small and low-powered car against aerodynamic drag. The company says the 2015 Mirage’s drag coefficient is a remarkable 0.28, which is not only low on an absolute scale but more laudable yet for such a small vehicle. If there's any spice in the shape, it's in details like the small canards at the bottom edges of on the front apron. Race day, anyone?
Mitsubishi says the Mirage is shaped like a teardrop, with the five-door hatchback's roof and upper body narrowing slightly toward the rear. We saw a hint of the last-generation Nissan Versa hatchback in the tailgate shape and rear lights. Like most very small cars, the Mirage is tall for its length, and the tiny 165/65 tires on 14-inch wheels look much too small for the car. The front wheels are also set deep into the wheelwells, which exacerbates their small size.
Inside, the Mirage is straightforward if plain. Interior surfaces are all hard plastic, and it's even lacking soft touch materials where elbows land on the door arm-rests. The textures are good, though, so the interior feels suited to the $13,000 price. The black cloth seat upholstery is shot through with purple threads to form a tight check pattern, which comes off far better than it may sound.
A simple gauge cluster—the dominant elements are a small tachometer, a large speedometer, and a gas gauge—and the car offers large, fairly intuitive knobs and switches for the audio system and automatic climate control. A small console includes two cupholders and a small tray for oddments.
You won't notice the anonymous 2015 Mitsubishi Mirage on the road; it's a generic small car with an undistinguished interior.