2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Review: Basement-Level Sedan

With a number of hallowed nameplates in Mitsubishi's back catalog, the brand has the potential to create something incredible. The Mirage G4 - the brand's subcompact sedan offering - is not something incredible. Without sounding too harsh, the Mitsubishi Mirage G4 makes other budget subcompacts look like luxury offerings, with cheap build quality, a short features list, and a 1.2-liter three-cylinder engine that can best be described as anemic with outputs of 76 horsepower and 74 lb-ft channeled via a CVT automatic to the front wheels on most trims, with a manual only available on the base model. Fortunately, Mitsubishi doesn't ask much for the Mirage G4, but it does command a $1,000 price premium over its hatchback sibling, and much to the delight of penny-pinchers everywhere, the G4 delivers exceptional gas mileage estimates that leave for dead the likes of the Nissan Versa and Kia Rio. However, our Mitsubishi Mirage G4 review proves that the sedan's thriftiness alone can't atone for its shortcomings.

Read in this review:

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Changes: 🚙What’s the difference vs 2020 Mirage G4?

Mitsubishi has given the G4 a gentle facelift for the 2021 model year. The changes include revised styling elements like a new Dynamic Shield grille and restyled bumpers. White Diamond joins the color palette this year. In terms of safety equipment, every new Mitsubishi Mirage G4 sedan model now comes with standard forward collision mitigation which includes pedestrian detection. Reserved for the top SE trim are lane departure warning and automatic high beams. This model also gets new LED headlights.

Inside, a new seven-inch Display Audio setup is standard across the lineup and supports both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The ES benefits from newly designed front arm rests and better materials. Finally, a new Carbonite Edition trim brings with it some sportier design elements like a unique grille, a B-pillar deal, and red exterior accents.

Pros and Cons

  • Excellent gas mileage
  • Nimble maneuverability
  • Relatively affordable MSRP
  • Industry-leading warranty coverage
  • Lackluster acceleration
  • Low-grade cabin materials
  • Engine is considerably loud
  • Rivals offer more of everything for the same money
  • Terrible highway manners
  • Loose handling dynamics

Best Deals on Mirage G4

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Trims

See trim levels and configurations:

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
ES
1.2L Inline-3 Gas
5-Speed Manual
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
$15,295
LE
1.2L Inline-3 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
$17,220
Carbonite Edition
1.2L Inline-3 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
$17,995
SE
1.2L Inline-3 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
$18,195

Mirage G4 Exterior

The Mirage G4's new grille and front fascia are designed on what Mitsubishi has termed the "Dynamic Shield'' concept and portrays Mitsubishi's latest design language - giving up the chrome-bar detailing for a black honeycomb mesh design. The changes to the exterior for 2021 work well although it doesn't look dramatically different from last year's model. While all models are fitted with LED taillights and a high-mounted stop light, the top-spec model is the only trim fitted with front halogen fog lights and LED headlights. The ES is equipped with 14-inch steel wheels with covers, while all other trims have 15-inch alloy wheels. The Carbonite Edition stands out with its B-pillar carbon pattern decal, sportier air dams, and unique grille detailing.

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Front Angle View Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Rear Angle View Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Side View Mitsubishi
See All 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Exterior Photos

Dimensions

As the sedan version of the Mirage, the Mirage G4 has more generous dimensions and is 18.1 inches longer than the hatchback version at 169.5 inches in overall length, while its 100.4-inch wheelbase is 3.9 inches longer than that of the hatchback. Both have a ground clearance of 6.3 inches, but the G4, with its height of 59.2 inches, is fractionally shorter; the G4 is 65.7 inches wide. At around 77 pounds heavier than the hatchback in their respective lightest trims, the G4 has curb weights ranging from 2,117 lbs to 2,194 lbs.

  • Length 169.5 in
  • Wheelbase 100.4 in
  • Height 59.2 in
  • Max Width 65.7 in
  • Front Width 56.9 in
  • Rear Width 56.3 in
  • Curb Weight 2,117.0 lbs

Exterior Colors

  • White Diamond
  • Starlight Silver Metallic
  • Wine Red Metallic
  • Mystic Black Metallic
  • Infrared Metallic
  • Sapphire Blue Metallic
  • Mercury Gray Metallic

Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Performance

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Side View Driving Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Side View Driving 1 Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Engine Bay Mitsubishi

Engine and Transmission

The Mirage G4's 1.2-liter inline-3 engine is excruciatingly underpowered: the 76 hp and 74 lb-ft of torque it musters up is barely enough to help it plod towards 60 mph in almost 13 seconds, according to independent tests. The five-speed manual gearbox, which is available only in the base-spec Mirage G4, helps provide better control over power delivery, but barely makes a difference. Things go from bad to worse when you spec the CVT that becomes standard on upper trims. With the CVT equipped, the front-wheel-drive G4 is painstaking to drive, giving the impression that the engine is dying a slow, horrible death.

Acceleration and power delivery remains lethargic in all configurations, be it from a standstill or when on the go. While it may be passable within city limits, it's incompetent at highway speeds, unable to maintain speed or effect passing maneuvers. The powertrain is noisy, unrefined, and continually sounds strained, making the Mirage G4 a backmarker in the segment in this area.

  • Engine
    1.2L Inline-3 Gas
  • Transmissions
    5-Speed Manual, Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
  • Drivetrain
    FWD

Handling and Driving Impressions

Should you find yourself straying onto a highway, not only is the FWD Mirage G4 incapable of traveling the appropriate speed consistently, but its wayward handling also makes the experience highly unpleasant. Wind and road noise permeates the cabin with headache-inducing tenacity, the light body structure is prone to crosswinds, and the suspension and steering feel loose at speed. Conversely, the loose steering makes in-town driving fairly easy. Not enjoyable, but easy. A tight turning circle and steering that requires a single finger on the wheel mean that accessing tight gaps is an easy affair. Unfortunately, though, ride quality doesn't improve much even at low speeds, with the cabin a rattlebox that gets shaken up on anything but the smoothest roads. For many in this segment, a low asking price doesn't come at the expense of refinement, but for the G4, cheap really does mean cheap and nasty.

Mirage G4 Gas Mileage

One advantage of the Mirage G4's tiny engine - possibly the only advantage - is the best-in-class gas mileage it affords. With the five-speed manual gearbox in play, the Mirage G4 returns EPA estimates of 33/40/35 mpg city/highway/combined. With the CVT automatic equipped, it returns even more impressive estimates of 35/41/37 mpg. The Mirage hatchback is a little more fuel-efficient though, with the manual model returning 33/41/36 mpg and the CVT model returning 36/43/39 mpg. The Kia Rio Sedan doesn't come up too far behind in gas mileage, with EPA estimates of 33/41/36 mpg coming from its more powerful four-cylinder mill and CVT. The Mirage G4's 9.2-gallon gas tank affords the CVT-equipped model a maximum range of 340 miles before running empty.

  • Fuel Tank Capacity
    9.2 Gallons
  • Fuel Economy
    City/Hwy: 33/40 mpg
* 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 ES Manual

Mirage G4 Interior

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Dashboard Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Dashboard 1 Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Steering Wheel Mitsubishi
See All 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

There is seating for up to five occupants in the 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4, though with limited passenger room overall; only two adults will realistically fit in the rear seats. The seats are uncomfortably thin and unsupportive, and the driver's seat is oddly positioned behind the steering wheel, feeling too high set and unergonomic. Ingress and egress are otherwise pretty easy and outward visibility is clear all-round. The G4's overall build quality is as is expected from a budget-friendly vehicle and the materials are mostly low-quality, although this isn't uncommon in the segment.

  • Seating capacity
    5-seater
  • Front Leg Room 41.7 in
  • Front Head Room 38.9 in
  • Rear Leg Room 37.3 in
  • Rear Head Room 36.8 in

Mirage G4 Trunk and Cargo Space

The Mirage G4 offers only 12.4 cubic feet of cargo room in the trunk, which is 4.7 cu-ft less than what is offered behind the rear seats of the hatchback version. That is enough room for about two suitcases, provided they aren't too big. The Kia Rio Sedan offers a little more in practicality with 13.7 cu-ft of cargo room offered in the trunk, but the Nissan Versa proves the most practical with 14.7 cubes of usable trunk volume.

As for storage solutions within the cabin, there's a small storage slot beneath the steering column, a moderately sized passenger-side glove box compartment, a small-item bin in the front of the center console, and dual cupholders. There are door side pockets with bottle holder sections on the front doors only, and dual cupholders are made available for rear passengers.

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Trunk Space Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Side View 1 Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Rear Angle View 1 Mitsubishi
  • Trunk Volume
    12.4 ft³

Mirage G4 Infotainment and Features

Features

One can't expect much from the Mirage G4 as a budget-friendly entry-level vehicle, but it still disappoints in comparison with its rivals. The base model, the Mirage ES, comes fitted with remote keyless entry, power windows, a six-way manually-adjustable driver's seat, a four-way manually-adjustable front passenger's seat, steering wheel infotainment controls, automatic climate control, cruise control, and a rearview camera. As you progress through the lineup, the Mirage G4 offers more features like a leather-wrapped steering wheel, heated front seats, push-button ignition, and a fast-key entry system. Although forward collision warning with pedestrian detection is now standard across the lineup, the Mirage G4 still lacks many of the advanced safety items available on rival vehicles.

Infotainment

A rather crummy seven-inch Display Audio interface is standard across the lineup. The system includes Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Bluetooth connectivity, an AM/FM radio, and one USB in front. Sound is channeled via a rather basic four-speaker sound system that tries but doesn't succeed in drowning out the vocal power plant.

Mirage G4 Problems and Reliability

The 2021 Mirage G4 has not yet fallen subject to any recall in the USA, with the 2018 year model being the last subject to a major recall - pertaining to faulty airbag system where the airbags would potentially not deploy in the event of an accident. Although J.D. Power has not rated the Mirage for reliability, Mitsubishi covers the G4 with a five-year/60,000-mile basic warranty and an industry-leading ten-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty. This is only the second area in which the Mirage G4 scores highly, with reliability being a high point.

Warranty

  • Basic:
    5 Years \ 60,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain:
    10 Years \ 100,000 Miles
  • Corrosion:
    7 Years \ 100,000 Miles
  • Roadside Assistance:
    5 Years \ Unlimited Miles

Mirage G4 Safety

The NHTSA is yet to evaluate the Mirage G4, although it awarded the hatchback variant four out of five stars overall. The IIHS, on the other hand, has evaluated the current model, awarding it mixed results. Of five specified crash tests, the Mirage G4 scored top results of Good for only three, getting a score of Marginal for the small front overlap on the front driver-side, and Acceptable for the side impact test. Every model is equipped with five standard airbags, which includes a driver's side knee airbag. There's a rearview camera, cruise control, and hill-start assist covering driver-assists, while forward collision warning with pedestrian detection is a new standard feature for 2021. However, the likes of lane departure warning and automatic high beams are only standard on the SE.

Verdict: 🏁Is the 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 sedan a good car?

As a budget-friendly and entry-level vehicle, the Mirage G4 is a very basic package - its number one concern is getting from one point to another at the lowest possible cost. So, buyers will benefit from a relatively affordable starting price and best-in-class gas mileage from the 1.2L engine, but that's where the advantages end with the Mirage G4. The value-for-money appeal ends there as it is equipped with low-grade underpinnings and fitted with the bare minimum in features. This makes for a ride that is not only painfully slow but considerably uncomfortable too. Moreover, the low-quality, thinly-cushioned, and unsupportive seats only add salt to the wound. Mitsubishi makes a futile attempt at leveling out the Mirage G4's flaws by including a relatively decent infotainment system but its compendium of faults is just simply inescapable. There are certainly many subcompact sedans better than the Mirage G4, offering far greater value and better, more well-rounded packages overall.

🚘What's the Price of the 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4?

With few standard features, the least Mitsubishi can do is give the Mirage G4 away at a fair price. The cheapest ES trim starts at an MSRP of $15,295 in the US with the five-speed manual gearbox, while equipping the CVT pushes the asking price to $16,595. The mid-spec LE is priced from $17,220 while the new Carbonite Edition goes for $17,995. The most expensive model is the SE at $18,195. Prices exclude options, tax, licensing, registration, and a $995 destination fee added to all purchases. These prices don't put the Mirage G4 in a good light, though, as a base-spec Yaris sedan starts at $15,650 while the Kia Rio is only $100 more - both offer substantially more value.

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Models

See All 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Trims and Specs

🚗What New Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Sedan Model Should I Buy?

If one must settle for the Mirage G4, then the only model we'd skip is the LE. Although pricier than the ES, the LE offers hardly any upgrades over this model, doesn't look as sporty as the Carbonite Edition, and lacks the extra safety and convenience features of the SE. Considering this car's positioning as a high-value budget model, the ES probably makes the most sense.

Check out other Mitsubishi Mirage Styles

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Comparisons

Nissan Versa Sedan CarBuzz
Kia Rio
CompetitorHorsepowerMPGPrice (MSRP)
Mitsubishi Mirage G478 hp33/40 mpg$15,295
Nissan Versa Sedan 122 hp27/35 mpg$14,830
Kia Rio 120 hp33/41 mpg$16,050

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 vs Nissan Versa Sedan

If the Mirage G4 fails to ignite even the slightest interest within your entry-level car desires, then the Nissan Versa may just be the rival to consider. Introduced as an all-new model last year, the Versa comes equipped with a significantly more powerful and more capable engine that makes it vastly more enjoyable and a little easier to drive around. And, that engine isn't much less fuel-efficient, returning 32/40/35 mpg. There's a little more passenger room in the Versa too, and a lot more trunk space, making it more comfortable and practical. A major advantage the Versa carries over the Mirage G4 is the selection of driver-assist technologies it gets as standard, where the G4 practically gets none. That makes the Versa the safer vehicle for a first-time owner. Overall, the Versa offers far more value for money as opposed to the Mitsubishi - it is most certainly the better buy and considering that the price of the Mirage G4 begins at $315 more, the Versa is the easy choice.

See Nissan Versa Sedan Review

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 vs Kia Rio

Despite asking $755 more at a base level, the Kia Rio proves to be worth every penny of the substandard Mirage G4. Not only does it feature a more powerful 1.6-liter engine with 120 horsepower compared to the G4's paltry 76, but thanks to a recently introduced CVT transmission, its 36 mpg combined gas mileage estimate is not far off the G4. Interior space favors the Kia, as does its build quality and fit and finish. More supportive seats and better standard infotainment are high points for the Kia, while on the S trim, an available package adds lane-keeping assist and driver attention warning - features you won't find on the G4. The Kia matches the Mitsubishi for a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty, but also offers greater levels of practicality with a larger trunk. Quite simply, the Mirage G4 is dead in the water with the Rio around.

See Kia Rio Review

Mitsubishi Mirage G4 Popular Comparisons

The most popular competitors of 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage G4:

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