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2006 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT Review

Love Bites

by Alain Gayot

In short: An exotic and totally fun value 2-door sports car.

Like the lonely flight attendant at the end of the bar, this might not be the one you get married to, but you sure are guaranteed some serious fun. With its new design, the Japanese sportster has the style and feel of an exotic inside and out, but at a bargain price. Starting at just under $19,400 for the GS with a 2.4 liter four-cylinder engine and backed by a generous warranty, this babe packs in some serious value. For a few thousand more, we’d advise you to go for the GT and its 263 horsepower 3.8 liter V6 MIVEC engine, which thrives on premium unleaded.

Throw at her another $3,270 and you get a bunch more goodies with the Premium Sport Package that our tester had, including power sunroof, leather-surfaced heated front seats, and a 650-watt nine speaker stereo with a trunk-mounted subwoofer for rocking on the road. With the six-speed manual transmission you’ll feel just like a race car driver as you tear through turns. Should you be on the lazy side, not to worry, as you’ll be able to rely on a five-speed automatic. If you’re betwixt and between, the Sportronic mode will let you manually select the desired gear.

The Eclipse is well balanced and is quite nimble in most driving situations. We found ourselves falling in lust, and had a hard time waiting until our next ride. The redesigned new-look Eclipse just got a whole lot better, and truly lives up to the company tag line, "Driven to Thrill."

Warranty/Service: 10-year/100,000-mile Powertrain Limited Warranty; five-year/60,000-mile New Vehicle Limited Warranty; five-year/unlimited mileage Roadside Assistance Plan.

Base Price: $19,399 /As tested: $27,694

Technical Specifications

Vehicle type: front-engine, front-wheel-drive, 4-passenger, 3-door coupe

Engine: 3.8-liter V6
Horsepower: 263 bhp @ 5750 rpm
Torque: 260 lb-ft @ 4500 rpm
Transmission: 6-speed manual

Curb weight: 3,472 lbs
Wheelbase: 101.4 in
179.7/72.2/53.5 in
Turning circle: 40 feet

Brakes: four-wheel disc with ABS
independent front and rear

Traction: traction control

front air bags, front side air bags, side curtain air bags

0-60 mph: 6.1 seconds
Top Speed: 134 mph (governed)

EPA City: 18 mpg
EPA Highway: 27 mpg

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Photography: AlphaMedia

(Updated: 12/20/11 NW)

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