Mitsubishi Eclipse

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Description: The 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse is ranked #5 in 2012 Affordable Sports Cars by U.S. News & World Report. See the full review, specs, pictures and prices.

While it offers good cargo space and a practical hatchback design, reviewers agreed that the 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse is overshadowed by sports cars that offer better performance and higher-quality interiors.

The 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse comes with a four-cylinder engine, and some critics wrote that the base Eclipse has decent power for city driving, but feels a bit strained at highway speeds. A more powerful V6 engine is available, but some reviewers noted that competing V6-powered sports cars offer more power and better fuel economy. A five-speed manual transmission is standard on the base Eclipse, and a four-speed automatic transmission is available. V6 models come standard with a five-speed automatic transmission. The EPA reports that the base 2012 Eclipse gets up to 20/28 mpg city/highway, which trails the fuel economy of rivals like the Hyundai Genesis Coupe, Mazda Miata and Mini Cooper Coupe. Test drivers said that the 2012 Eclipse offers strong brakes, as well as composed handling and a comfortable ride. However, some auto writers noted that a large turning radius can make the Eclipse difficult to maneuver in tight spaces.

While reviewers agreed that the 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse has an attractively designed interior, many also commented that cheap plastic surfaces detract from its appeal. Critics noted that the Eclipse’s controls are logically arranged, and that the available Rockford Fosgate stereo system offers exceptional sound quality. The Eclipse is available in hatchback and convertible (Eclipse Spyder) body styles, and test drivers wrote that the hatchback offers great cargo space for the class. Still, some said that both models could use more interior storage spaces for small items. The 2012 Eclipse comes standard with cruise control, keyless entry and a six-speaker stereo with an auxiliary jack. Available features include a sunroof, Bluetooth, satellite radio, a rearview camera, leather seats, heated front seats, a power-adjustable driver’s seat and automatic climate control.

The Ford Mustang comes with a more powerful base engine, and reviewers loved its precise steering and athletic handling. Like the Eclipse, the Mustang is available in coupe and convertible body styles, and it offers a useful amount of trunk space for a sports car.

The two-seat Mini Cooper Roadster earns some of the best fuel economy estimates in the class, and reviewers said it offers a surprising amount of cargo space considering its small size. The Mini Roadster is also available with responsive turbocharged engines in S and John Cooper Works models, and test drivers wrote that nimble handling makes it particularly fun to drive.

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