2008 Mitsubishi Eclipse Interior
Edmunds' writers are not the only ones to notice some improvement in the Eclipse's four-seat interior. "The old Eclipse had a mishmash interior loaded down with cheap plastics. In the new car, you can tell some thought went into design," they write. Road and Track appreciates that "the dash layout, the gauges, the nighttime blue lighting and the body-hugging sport seats" make other cars "a bit dull by comparison."
The notion of an exciting interior is a recurrent theme. Motor Trend states that "the cabin's design, detailing, and materials also drew compliments. It's anything but bland," while the appreciates that "the interior remains strikingly modern and sporty." The complains, "There's not a lot of room" inside the Eclipse, but is quick to note that "remarkable room between the door panel and the center stack of controls ... belies the car's overall tight confines."
General opinions of the Eclipse's seats vary. Consumer Guide thinks they're "nicely bolstered ... comfortable" and that they "provide support in fast turns." Similarly, the reviewer notes the GT trim's seats "fit like a plaster cast." But Road and Track complains that they "could use firmer bolsters on the cushions for harder driving" before conceding that "in general the low-slung driving position makes you feel like you're inside the car, not riding on top of it."
Specifically, the front row's bucket seats "provide good support," as the MarketWatch states that the highly bolstered front seats "not only kept you in place but also were long-trip comfortable as well." But Consumer Guide challenges the Chicago reviewer's opinion that comfort is universal. Its reviewers note that the steering wheel "tilts but doesn't telescope, so some shorter testers find pedals a long reach." The was also uncomfortable, noting that "the big handbrake in the center console rubs up against the driver's right leg."describes, with a height-adjustable steering wheel that "allows drivers of various sizes to get comfortable."
There are no doubts in reviewers' minds that the backseat is cramped, but some were more understanding of this. Thesays the Eclipse "has four seats. But the two in the rear are useless, and that is as it should be. Sports cars are selfish and built to stay that way." Conversely, the reviewer says the back seat only exists "in theory ... no one whose age is in the double digits would want to sit back there."
The Eclipse's instrument panel and climate controls are logically placed and easy to use, says the general majority. MarketWatch explains that "the interior was laid out well, with simple-to-understand controls coming easily to hand." notes that "controls for everything -- lights, heater/vent/AC, wipers, sound system -- are right where you'd expect to find them and are large enough, well marked and mostly, well illuminated." Edmunds' compliment is backhanded. "The dash flows in a soft wave, and a large inlay of textured, matte-finish vinyl does a good job of drawing your eyes away from the hard plastic surrounding it. The dark trim on the center stack does a convincing impression of real metal," they write.
The 2008 Eclipse's ice-blue back lighting is a favorite. Motor Trend calls it "pure eye candy" and the says the "sophisticated" color is "a perfect match for the car's personality." However, the praise is weighed against a wish that "the very attractive blue numerals of the speedometer and tachometer were a bit larger to be read more easily at a glance," as explains.
Stereo and Entertainment
The Eclipse's standard stereo is a 140-watt AM/FM CD player with MP3 capability and six speakers, but reviewers prefer the "incredible" 650-watt Rockford Fosgate sound system, Edmunds says. This system features a six-disc in-dash CD changer, nine speakers and a 10-inch subwoofer, and is "one of the Eclipse's high points," Motor Trend explains. "It sounds great, with plenty of strong bass, clear highs, and crisp channel separation."
The 2008 Mitsubishi Eclipse has a maximum cargo capacity of 15.7 cubic feet once seats are folded, and the' reviewers are not alone in reporting that its "cargo hold is surprisingly roomy and easily accommodates half a dozen grocery bags and other shallow gear." Likewise, the says the hatch is easy to open but later admits the "giant subwoofer in the trunk took up a bunch of space," for the optional Rockford-Fosgate audio system.
Car and Driver says the Eclipse's cramped backseat redeems itself when you flip the seats, to which the adds that "the flip-down rear seats makes the car practical for something other than boulevard inspection."
Smaller stowage is harder to come by. Edmunds is disappointed that "you're limited to a center console container and a glovebox. There's no tray for a cell phone, no door bin for a map, no holder for your sunglasses."