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#4

in 2010 Affordable Sports Cars

Avg. Price Paid: $11,237 - $17,270
Original MSRP: $20,699 - $32,599
MPG: 20 City / 28 Hwy
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2010 Mitsubishi Eclipse Performance

This performance review was created when the car was new. Some links may no longer point to an active page.

Auto writers agree that the Eclipse is a comfortable daily driver with a sporty edge. Still, for real sports performance, critics suggest you look elsewhere.

  • "The Eclipse isn't a complete impostor. In GT trim, it's got a throaty V6 that cranks out 265 horsepower -- a healthy number for this type of car. And its handling is sportier than that of most other midsize coupes. But the Eclipse is still mostly a sleek ride for those who appreciate style more than performance. And that's what the current Eclipse has been serving up since it took to the stage in 2006." -- Edmunds

Acceleration and Power

The 2010 Eclipse is available with two engine options. The GS and GS Sport feature a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 162 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 162 pound-feet of torque at 4,000 rpm. Test drivers, however, prefer the GT's 3.8-liter V6 engine that makes 265 horsepower at 5,750 rpm and 262 pound-feet of torque at 4,500 rpm. While drivers can choose between five-speed manual and four-speed automatic transmissions for the GS, the GT offers a choice of a six-speed manual or five-speed automatic.

According to the EPA, the Eclipse trim level with the highest city/highway fuel efficiency is the manual GS, with 20/28 mpg. The lowest is the automatic GT, with 16/24 mpg.

  • "The base GS comes with a 2.4-liter, 162-horsepower I-4 that, while not as refined as some of the Honda fours, is most pleasant to live with." -- MarketWatch
  • "The best choice is the GT version with the SOHC 3.8-liter V-6 that makes 263 horsepower and 260 pounds-feet of torque and is mated to a smooth-shifting six-speed manual transmission or a five-speed automatic Sportronic transmission." -- The Detroit News
  • "In contrast to the V6, the four-cylinder struggles with the Eclipse's heavy curb weight -- acceleration with the smaller engine could best be described as anemic." -- Edmunds
  • "Both engines provide plenty of low-end torque -- a plus when the light turns green and you've got to get across the intersection and then into another lane, for example." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "With automatic transmission, 4-cylinder models are acceptable around town, but lack highway passing punch. A test hatchback did 9.2 sec 0-60 mph.  ... A test GT hatchback automatic did 6.5 sec 0-60. Convertibles are slightly slower due to some 200-lb additional weight." -- Consumer Guide

Handling and Braking

Test drivers find that the Eclipse offers sporty -- not sports car -- handling and is comfortable enough to use as a daily driver.  Its brakes, however, receive mixed reviews. Among other modern performance technology, the 2010 Eclipse features an Anti-lock Braking System, Traction Control and Active Stability Control.

  • "For many drivers, the 2010 Mitsubishi Eclipse's driving dynamics may be a bit of a disappointment. The GT's V6 produces plenty of power, but getting all those horses to the pavement can often result in a large dose of wheelspin and torque steer." -- Edmunds
  • "Not quite as sporty as its looks imply, but any Eclipse corners with ample grip and minimal body lean. Convertibles are impressively solid, suffering no noticeable handling penalty. Lighter GS models feel a bit better balanced than GTs, and the available 18-inch tires furnish the most grip." -- Consumer Guide
  • "The car's chassis is considerably stiffer than that of its predecessor, improving handling. Meanwhile, four-wheel independent suspension ensures the ride is still comfortable." -- Left Lane News
  • "Twisty back roads are welcome when driving the Eclipse and, although the V6 has enough power to generate some torque steer (a tendency for the steering of a front-drive car to pull to one side or the other during hard acceleration), it's not unmanageable by any means." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Brakes are spot-on in feel and apparent prowess." -- USA Today
  • "Brakes were grabby and unprogressive." -- Los Angeles Times

Next Steps: 2010 Mitsubishi Eclipse

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