First Drive: Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback Ralliart review (2008 onwards) – MSN Cars UK

27 Aug 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on First Drive: Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback Ralliart review (2008 onwards) – MSN Cars UK

First Drive: Mitsubishi Sportback Ralliart review onwards)

What: Mitsubishi Ralliart

Where: Barcelona,

Date: June 2008

£21,500 (TBC)

Available: 2009

Key rivals: Subaru WRX, VW Golf R32, ST, Mazda3 MPS, Renault R26

New five-door junior Evo brings four-wheel drive turbo performance to a more affordable

Likes: bang per buck, SST gearbox, great chassis,

Dislikes: weight blunts odd proportions, band G emissions, sounding engine

GALLERY: Ralliart

First Impressions

© Mitsubishi

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The new Evo X is an amazing car but it’s also an one, suitably specced now costing £30K or more. So has responded with this, the Ralliart. Based around the five-door Sportback Lancer got Evo essentials like four-wheel and a ballistic turbo engine for a more affordable price.

What counts as affordable Well, prices are yet to be fixed but it to cost around £21,500 it goes on sale early year. So we’re talking GTI money here, pitching the against the Impreza WRX.

R26. Focus ST. Mazda3 Astra VXR and others.

And against rivals the Ralliart has some advantages. Its Evo bloodline means drive is a given. And although it a detuned version of the Evo’s 2.0-litre engine it’s got 237bhp and will crack in just seven seconds.

But the big news is the gearbox, the Ralliart as standard with Mitsubishi’s SST transmission.

That’s a serious for this price point, a 227bhp Golf GTI Pirelli a DSG gearbox would cost you The Ralliart bathes in the reflected of its Evo brother too, sharing the scoops and aggressive face and it with the new hatchback Lancer It ain’t pretty but it certainly has

To Mitsubishi what STI is to Subaru, is the in-house competition and tuning And its name wasn’t about to be in vain. It might not be an Evo by badge but new five-door is certainly Evo by nature and the four-cylinder delivers its 237bhp real vigour.

It uses a simpler turbo set up the Evo. And although the MIVEC valve timing attempts to the power delivery there’s no the forced induction character. is a good thing, the boost in an invigorating torrent in proper, old turbo fashion.

There’s an raw edge to its power delivery It’s just a pity it so boring, with none of the ST’s charisma and rather refined than the slick VW turbo engine in the Golf If it makes you feel any better it a lot better on the outside.

It does with the Ralliart’s hefty kerbweight though, the four-wheel gubbins adding at least to the standard front-wheel drive Sportback. As such it feels but perhaps not quite as ballistic as you hope, and you really need to the engine hard to extract its

Evos have always keen drivers with sharp handling and that’s rubbed off on the Ralliart too. And that rally pedigree makes cars like and the Imprezas (or some of them, at such effective weapons out in the world of broken tarmac and back roads.

Anyone can a car handle well on a track but cross-country ability demands as well as composure and Mitsubishi’s engineers continue to go from to strength. The Ralliart doesn’t get the designer-label Bilstein dampers and springs but that doesn’t a huge handicap.

The weight does make its felt though. The Ralliart it well but there is a hint of that robs it of that degree of sparkle. Nonetheless, changes are rapid and the steering to respond, the four-wheel drive letting you power through nose heaviness, should you so

The SST gearbox makes going very easy too. aluminium paddles behind the let you punch through the ratios, the slamming home with aggression in sports mode. clunkier than DSG but this suits the car and there is a slurry mode for when you just to pootle.

Image © Mitsubishi

Drive it the way it you to and the official combined consumption of will seem as distant a as sub £1 per litre fuel. You might get on a motorway cruise but the weight, drive chassis and – importantly – lairy are all conspiring against you.

G emissions are also going to hit you it hurts, with most drive rivals scraping band F. And while the previous took a bit of a hammering on the Euro test Mitsubishi has been hard here, safety including a ‘RISE’ reinforced and hazard lights that under emergency braking.

The MSN verdict: 4/5

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