Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback Ralliart 2010 Heats Competition [+ photos ]

Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback Ralliart 2010  front

A welcome gap-filler in the Lancer family, the Sportback Ralliart 2010 bring exactly what drivers needed to find somewhere in between a roomy Lancer and the track-inspired compact Lancer Evolution. Between you and me, the Ralliart Sportback is the only intelligent pick from the two, and the only serious competitor for the excellent refreshed Subaru WRX wagon.

Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback Ralliart 2010  front

Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback Ralliart 2010

The first thing you’ll notice about the new Sportback Ralliart from the Japanese maker is that crazy liftgate, that could fool you in thinking it’s a hatch from a distance. But make no mistake, this is a five-door car with decent cargo space, actually – as we were mentioning Subaru competition – it has 47 cubic feet of stowage, and the WRX  only 44. The rest of the exterior aesthetics part is pretty much a more cooled down Evolution, you can plainly see that the tires are thinner, the intercooler is smaller and the lines on the side hint towards a more elegant ride.

The interior is where the Sportback Ralliart’s econobox roots are most apparent, discordantly. I mean, you get all these nice specs, a trimmed down exterio design that looks really good and then when you step inside you get plastic all over and poor architecture, the All-Wheel Control on the steering wheel. The bargain-basement Lancer starts at $14,790 and features the exact same dash.

Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback Ralliart 2010 interior view

Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback Ralliart 2010 interior view

Mileage is mediocre,EPA figures saythat you’ll hit 17 miles per gallon in the city and 25 out on the highway, but in real life testers have said that shifting to Sport on the TC-SST dual-clutch six-speed transmission lifts guzzling to insane levels. Sure, you can just drive on Normal but that makes the car a slowcoach and rather dull to drive. You just bought a Mitsubishi, right?

If you don’t get my point on that last phrase there, let’s take a glance at what’s under the Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback Ralliart 2010′s hood. The car is fitted with a turbocharger, making the 4B11T 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder capable of producing 237 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 253 pound-feet or torque at 3,000 rpm. You’ll note that it’s a few horses lower than the 265-hp WRX, but it sounds a lot louder so if impressing is your thing you won the game here. The WRK is also quicker to the 60 mph line, the Ralliart Sportback accelerates in 5.5 seconds.

Add-ons and gadgets rise the price of the car a lot, the Sportback you see in the photos is almost full-packed and costs around $31,000. Still, competition like the MazdaSpeed3 and the already (often) mentioned Subaru WRX. A convenient compromise-car, or just a weak addition to the already unimaginative Mitsubishi line (the future Evo hybrid could change that a bit)? State your thought whichever it may be, or just browse the photo gallery to see the car for yourself.

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