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Downsize Aspriation: Mitsubishi’s large-car substitute, the Lancer Aspire, will appeal to buyers wishing to live large, but in a smaller way.

Mitsubishi fleshes out its Lancer range with a new luxury model called Aspire

16 Sep 2008

JUST 12 months after its introduction, Mitsubishi Australia is refreshing the Lancer sedan range with a leading luxury model called Aspire, a new 2.4-litre engine and minor upgrades across the range.

The Aspire is exactly what Mitsubishi believes the medium- and large-sedan market is craving.

“We have found that up to 32 per cent of our new Lancer customers are coming to us from both mid- and large-sized passenger vehicles,” said MMAL passenger vehicle product planning manager Chris Maxted.

Mr Maxted said many such buyers want to downsize but don’t want to miss out on luxury features as a result. He expects the Lancer Aspire to find a ready market, with around 40 Aspire sales a month.

21 center imageThe Aspire is powered by the Outlander’s 2.4-litre MIVEC four-cylinder engine, a joint venture between Mitsubishi, Daimler and Hyundai. It develops a peak power of 125kW at 6000rpm and 226Nm at 4100rpm and is linked to a continuously variable transmission. The claimed average fuel consumption is 8.5L/100km.

The Lancer Aspire goes on sale for $33,990 on September 22 with standard equipment including seven SRS airbags, rain-sensing wipers, dusk-sensing headlamps, “Smart” key entry, climate-control air-conditioning, leather seats, woodgrain trim, Bluetooth connectivity, steering wheel mounted paddle-shifters (for the standard CVT), HID headlights, and a Rockford Fosgate premium audio system complete with a 650 Watt amp and nine speakers including a sub-woofer.

In what Mitsubishi describes as an “introductory special”, in the first three months on sale the Aspire will have an optional Multi Communication System with satellite navigation fitted for free.

The Aspire also has the traction and stability control, ABS brakes with EBD as fitted to all Lancer models.

Meanwhile, the Lancer VRX also now has the 2.4-litre engine in place of the 2.0-litre that remains standard in ES and VR variants.

The Lancer VRX also has improved sound insulation and a premium console for the interior, while ES and VR also get the sound insulation plus improved fuel economy in manual versions due to revised gear ratios.

Pricing for the VR-X has increased $800 to $29,790 for the manual and $32,290 for the CVT auto. The VR has increased its price by $300 to $25,590 for the manual (CVT auto $28,090) and ES CVT auto has increased $200 to $23,490. The ES manual remains at $20,990.

The ES also receives chrome accents for the interior, including detailing on air vents and handbrake surround.

Meanwhile Mitsubishi has its hot Ralliart Lancer due in late October, both in sedan and Sportback, the hatchback version of the Lancer that will debut at the Paris motor show next month. Australia will also get other versions of Sportback, with exact models due to be announced at the Australian International Motor Show in Sydney, which opens on October 9.

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