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2016 Mitsubishi Lancer Refreshed with Exterior Changes, More Features

2016 Mitsubishi Lancer Refreshed with Exterior Changes, More Features

By Philly Murtha, September 30, 2015

After nearly eight years since its last redesign, Mitsubishi has announced that it will introduce in the next few weeks a refreshed Lancer compact sporty car for 2016 that will feature a slightly bolder exterior look with more standard equipment and technology at a starting MSRP just under $18,000. Currently, the Lancer is the third-best-selling compact sporty model in the United States, based on sales data collected by J.D. Power and auto forecasting partner LMC Automotive.

The Mitsubishi Lancer, which is made in Japan and renowned for its Evolution rally car variant that was driven by Vin Diesel in the highly successful “The Fast and the Furious” film franchise, offers more choices for consumers for the 2016 model year with four trim levels: ES, SE, SEL and GT. The latter is likely to take the place of the sporty Evolution. More features are standard on all trim levels of the 2016 Lancer, even on the basic ES, such as Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity, automatic AC, fog lights, alloy wheels, and LED daytime running lights. Heated front seats, a rearview camera and display, and HD Radio are also standard in the ES.

A new SEL trim level has extra features including leather seats, rain-sensing wipers, auto on/off headlights, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror, while the GT trim level gives drivers who enjoy the sport of driving and yearn for performance a sport-tuned suspension, larger disc brakes, 18-in. alloy wheels, sunroof, and rear spoiler. The GT also is available with a 5-speed manual or the newest-generation CVT8 transmission. Optional paddle shifters are available for the GT trim level.

The refreshed look of the 2016 Lancer features a new front bumper, chrome accents, and slightly different headlights along with new alloy wheels and new exterior paint colors including Diamond White Pearl and Alloy Silver. The interior features new seat fabrics, a different center console design with a built-in USB port, and the latest generation of Mitsubishi’s infotainment system.

The basic Lancer ES is powered by a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine that generates 148 horsepower with 145 lb.-ft. of torque. It comes standard with a 5-speed manual, and a continuously variable transmission (CVT) is optional. The other trim levels are equipped with a 2.4-liter engine (optional for the ES) that generates 168 horsepower and 167 lb.-ft. of torque. A CVT is standard for the SE and SEL, and a 5-speed manual is standard for the GT (CVT optional).

Safety is not an extra in the new Lancer. Mitsubishi points out that the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has named the Lancer a “Top Safety Pick” for seven consecutive years, partly due to what Mitsubishi acknowledges is its safe body construction system.

Although there have been rumors that Mitsubishi will focus on its SUV model lineup—Outlander and Outlander Sport—the Lancer is still in the running. Sales through the first eight months of 2015 were up by more than 2,000 units compared with last year, to 13,154 vs. 11,123.

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