2021 Mitsubishi Mirage

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2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Review: The Thriftiest Runabout Around

by Aiden Eksteen

There are very few subcompact 5-door hatchbacks to choose from in the USA, with most Americans showing a preference for larger, more pragmatic vehicle types such as trucks and crossover SUVs. There are many first-time buyers, however, that do enter the market looking for an entry-level, budget-friendly car like the 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage. This tight clique of vehicles includes the Kia Rio and the Chevrolet Spark, all of which are among the most affordable and economical cars in America. So far into its fifth generation, the Mirage hatch is still powered by the 76-horsepower three-pot motor it's become quite infamous for, being that it's the weakest motor sold in America. The 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage hatchback carries a price of just $14,295, however, which makes it the most affordable car in America, too. Though it may be severely underpowered and unentertaining to drive, the Mirage is also the most efficient gasoline-run car you'll find. With its remarkably low pricing comes far too many compromises, though. Its offers listless performance and a second-rate cabin impression, but is the Mirage's price low enough to overlook these flaws?

Read in this review:

6.8
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2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Changes: 🚙What’s the difference vs 2020 Mirage?

Mitsubishi has introduced a few cosmetic updates for the Mirage, along with newly standard safety features. Outside, some of the changes include a new Dynamic Shield design for the grille, a sportier front bumper, and two new colors. Inside, a seven-inch display providing access to Apple CarPlay and Android Auto now comes fitted as standard. Crucially, the entire range gets standard forward collision warning and pedestrian detection, while the SE trim is available with lane departure warning and automatic high beams.

Buyers can now opt for an available Carbonite Edition (CE), a package that includes a B-pillar decal, red exterior accents, and a unique front grille. Last year's GT variant is no longer available for 2021.

Pros and Cons

  • Effortless to drive around town
  • Leading fuel economy returns
  • Pricing is remarkably affordable
  • Impressive standard warranty
  • Weakest inline-3 on the market
  • Cabin is easily permeated with noise
  • Many second-rate interior materials

Best Deals on 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage 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
$14,295
LE
1.2L Inline-3 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
$16,220
Carbonite Edition
1.2L Inline-3 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
$16,995
SE
1.2L Inline-3 Gas
Continuously Variable Automatic (CVT)
Front-Wheel Drive
$17,445
See All 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Trims and Specs

2021 Mirage Exterior

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Forward Vision Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Rearward Vision Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Frontal Aspect Mitsubishi
See All 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Exterior Photos

Dimensions

  • Length 151.4 in
  • Wheelbase 96.5 in
  • Height 59.4 in
  • Max Width 65.6 in
  • Front Width 56.3 in
  • Rear Width 55.7 in
  • Curb Weight 2,140.0 lbs

Exterior Colors

  • White Diamond +$395
  • Wine Red Metallic
  • Mystic Black Metallic
  • Sand Yellow
  • Starlight Silver Metallic
  • Infrared Metallic
  • Sapphire Blue Metallic
  • Mercury Gray Metallic

2021 Mirage Performance

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Driving Front Angle Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Side View Driving Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Wheel Mitsubishi

Engine and Transmission

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

2021 Mirage Interior

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Dashboard Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Infotainment System Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Steering Wheel Mitsubishi
See All 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

  • Seating capacity
    5-seater
  • Front Leg Room 41.7 in
  • Front Head Room 39.0 in
  • Rear Leg Room 34.2 in
  • Rear Head Room 37.2 in

2021 Mirage Trunk and Cargo Space

2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Driver Seat Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Front Seats Mitsubishi
2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Aft View Mitsubishi
  • Maximum Cargo Space
    47 ft³

2021 Mirage Safety and Reliability

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

US NHTSA Crash Test Result

  • Overall Rating
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
  • Side Crash Rating
  • Rollover Rating

Verdict: 🏁Is the 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage a good Hatchback?

As an entry-level, budget-friendly runabout, the 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage does offer plenty of value for the money it costs. However, it also comes with many drawbacks, and whether the Mirage is worth considering really comes down to what you'd be willing to do without in a car you'd likely be driving on a daily basis.

Perks of the Mirage include its impressively low pricing, class-leading fuel efficiency, it's fairly decent level of cargo space, and its rather extensive warranty coverage, courtesy of Mitsubishi. It also comes with a respectable infotainment system for a budget car that features full smartphone integration. J.D Power also availed the hatchback with a fairly decent rating for its reliability, but this is about where the Mirage's favorable qualities come to an end.

It's difficult to excuse the Mirage's utterly listless and mundane drive and handling qualities for the perks it does offer. It's really uncomfortable over surfaces that are anything less than perfect, too, and its second-rate cabin impression brought about by the spartan seats and abundance of low-grade materials is only worsened by the permeation of engine and outside noise, especially at higher speeds. The NHTSA and IIHS's review of the 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage also returned a rather poor safety rating, a failing that is arguably inadmissible in this day in age.

The Mitsubishi Mirage may offer a fair number of perks, but its drawbacks are just far too severe by comparison. Many of the Mirage's main contemporaries offer better experiences overall, from theway they drive to the value they bear throughout.

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