Mitsubishi Attrage Review: Attrage Of Modesty

Derryn Wong



Uhh…what’s an Attrage? It sounds dangerous…
It’s a new, small sedan from Mitsubishi, one that goes up against the likes of the Nissan Almera and Toyota Vios, and aims to provide low-cost, no-frills motoring.

The Attrage nameplate is a new one and a bit of digging shows that it, ostensibly, is a portmanteau of the words ‘attractive’ and ‘Mirage’, the latter being a small Mitsubishi model sold elsewhere in the world. The Attrage is sold in Thailand, where it’s built, as a Mirage, too. Nonsense Japanese names aside, we’re just sad Mitsubishi didn’t try to sell a Mirage name crossed with the Outlander.

Ah no wonder it looks like this…
It does look the part of a compact sedan. Short nose, a boot, a relatively tall, bulbous greenhouse which spell for easy interior access and urban maneuvering. There are some concessions to fashion, with the sky blue paintwork and dark-alloy 15-inch wheels, though.

It’s actually slightly smaller than its two key rivals, both of which are approximately 4.4-metres long, although the wheelbases of the Vios and Attrage are identical, at 2,550mm, with Almera having 40mm more space between the wheels.

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Does it feel ‘budget’?
It’s cheap and cheerful, so is more budgie than budget. There’s really quite a lot of space for rear passengers, while the boot is predictably huge, at 450-litres, it’ll fit a lot of stuff, though the seats can’t fold down.

You’ll have to know where to look to see that the Attrage is built to a very tight cost (exposed wiring when you open the glove box, hollow sounding doors) but the car does a decent job of distracting you from that with an eyebrow-raising equipment load.

Automatic (though single-zone) aircon, a radio system with USB/AUX connections, trip computer, powered mirrors and steering wheel remote controls can all be considered rather luxurious extras at this end of the market, but despite the sub-$100k price, the Attrage has that and even keyless entry and start.

How does it drive?
Unlike the Nissan and Toyota, which both have 1.5-litre inline four-cylinder engines, the Attrage has a 1.2-litre inline three-cylinder engine – that also means it’s down at least 10bhp over its rivals, with only 78bhp.

While the spec sheet, and colossal 0-100km/h time, might suggest the Attrage is perhaps a little too humble, it’s actually a very decent drive in the city. You’ll probably wonder why everyone else is in such a dad-gurned hurry all of a sudden, but the Attrage isn’t as noisy as we expected, although you will feel and hear when the road surface changes.

Everything about it – handling, braking, acceleration – is soft and gradual, and the ride isn’t sophisticated, but the car weighs just 900kg, which helps with handling and efficiency.

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But are there good reasons to buy one?
The chief reason are cost and running costs. As of June’s first bidding round it costs $89,999 with COE. That means you need about $36k in cash to own one.

More plus points about the engine is that it comes with Cycle & Carriage’s 10-year engine warranty too, which should help ease buying worries considerably, and as a small, modestly-powered unit, it has a quoted fuel efficiency of 4.8L/100km. 

So it’s a modest car, and it has a very modest price, and it spells a modest way of arriving, but the alternatives at this end of the market, are taking the bus, or not arriving at all.

Mitsubishi Attrage
Engine 1,193cc, 16V, inline 3
Power 78bhp at 6000rpm
Torque 100Nm at 4000rpm
Gearbox CVT
Top Speed 170km/h
0-100kmh 14.0 seconds
Fuel efficiency 4.8L/100km
CO2 113g/km
Price $89,999 with COE
Availability Now

Also Consider: Hyundai Accent, Nissan Almera, Toyota Vios



About the Author

Derryn Wong

CarBuyer's chief editor brings 15 years of experience in automotive journalism, previously being the editor of Top Gear Singapore, a presenter for CNA, contributed to The Business Times, Today, and many other publications, and also covered technology as editor of Stuff magazine. An avid motorcyclist and photographer, he is the Chief Slave of two cats. Follow him on Instagram @werryndong

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