Mitsubishi Eclips GT

In either iteration, the new Eclipse is a good-looking car. Where the last generation veered from the course set by the original and the second-gen “fast & furious” designs, the ’05 is a genuine spiritual successor, at least visually. (Honestly, we in the automotive journalists’ ranks were pleasantly surprised when the Eclipse turned out so close to the outrageous concept car we saw in Detroit a couple years back.) The rear haunches are muscular to the extreme; sexy and sensual. The front fascia evinces a look that’s genuinely new, evoking maybe one of the spaceships out of Star Wars. Details like the lighting fixtures are well done; the headlights with their delicate spectacle design are outdone only by the clear-lens projector-style taillamps. Rims, even on this 4-banger GS, are blade-like 17-inchers.


Inside, the Eclipse has some attractive, space-age touches as well, although it doesn’t quite pull off the feeling of quality that the rest of the car does. There’s the center console and shifter area, with accents that mimic an aluminum-tube backbone running lengthwise through the car. The molded ‘Eclipse’ text running across the hatchback’s plastic cover over the trunk storage area–visible through the rear glass–is neat as well. But the stubborn HVAC vent mechanisms are poorly designed–one had already broken on our tester–and many materials feel substandard in the less-likely-to-be-touched areas.



It’s obvious that Mitsubishi held the price down on this niche car by cutting costs here. Add that to the fact that the sport-coupe design requires an almost supine seating position and the poor visibility anywhere but up front, and you’d have to be a pretty dedicated Eclipse enthusiast to want to spend every commuting hour in here. Still, you’ll look good doing it.

Scribbled on April 2nd 2007 in Mitsubishi, Pictures
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