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2008 Mitsubishi Eclipse

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2008 Mitsubishi Eclipse Review

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The Mitsubishi Eclipse Coupe, now entering its third year of production, continues to see a steady rise in sales. One reason for this is obvious: The Eclipse's curvaceous good looks, reasonable price tag and impressive performance and handling make it a highly desirable choice. A bit less obvious, but still a factor, is that, currently, the only other front-wheel drive, two-door hatchbacks offering similar performance and value are the Volkswagen GTI, Hyundai Tiburon and MINI Cooper S, none of which can come close to matching the Eclipse's 263 horsepower. If you can live without a hatchback and the higher performance, the Chevrolet Cobalt Sport, Honda Civic Si and Ford Mustang V6 might also be worth a look.

You'll Like This Car If...

You'll like the Eclipse Coupe if you are looking for an affordable, sporty-styled, modern-looking two-door that offers a substantial level of fun-to-drive performance in a moderately-priced front-wheel drive vehicle.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you are a dyed-in-the-wool performance enthusiast who demands 300-plus horsepower and the most precise handling possible, this car may not deliver on your dream. And, the rear-seat headroom is very limited.

What's New for 2008

A limited production SE version, available on both the GS and GT trim levels, features custom graphics, an aerodynamic body kit, 18-inch wheels, Active Stability Control (V6 only) and a firmer suspension. All Eclipse coupes now feature a tire-pressure monitoring system as standard equipment.

Driving the Eclipse

Driving Impressions The Eclipse Coupe is no longer the boy-racer it once was. Today's Eclipse has matured, engineered for the middle-of-the-road sporty driver. This is not to say the Eclipse is without...

some very sporty driving characteristics. Both engines provide plenty of low-end torque -- a plus when the light turns green and you've got to get across the intersection and then into another lane, for example. With the Eclipse GT, Mitsubishi has managed to strike a satisfying balance between steering responsiveness and low-speed control, both of which seem nearly effortless. Twisty back roads are welcome when driving the Eclipse, and although the V6 has enough power to generate some torque steer (a tendency for the steering of a front-drive car to pull to one side or the other during hard acceleration) it's not unmanageable by any means.

Rockford Fosgate Audio
Available in the Sun and Sound Package, along with a sunroof, for around $1,800, this nine-speaker 650-watt Rockford Fosgate audio system features a six-disc, in-dash CD changer that also plays MP3 files (but alas, has no iPod connection).

10-Year Warranty
Mitsubishi's 10-year/100,000-mile warranty on the powertrain is pretty hard to ignore when you're considering the pros and cons of a new-car purchase. It buys you a lot of peace-of-mind.

2008 Mitsubishi Eclipse Details
Interior

As has been the case in past Eclipse designs, the interior of the current coupe delivers on the promises made by its sporty exterior. An abundance of glass coupled with more interior space goes a long way to alleviating feelings of claustrophobia. Still, the curved dash is designed with such a slant that it almost seems to give off a sensation of movement. Interior fit and finish is tight, and there is hardly a trace of cheap plastic. The well-bolstered sport bucket front seats work well for enthusiastic driving, but are still comfy enough for long road trips. The side airbag on the passenger's seat has a weight sensor that prevents the bag from deploying when the seat is occupied by a child.

Exterior

The fourth-generation Eclipse could be characterized as more "muscular" than its previous incarnations, with little-to-no defining breaks interrupting the surfaces flowing between fenders and integrated bumpers. The headlights seem to wear shades -- each has a blue-tinted "monocle" lens extending out before it -- and the lights benefit from a multi-parabola design, which maximizes the bulbs' projections. The rear lamps look clear, but shine red with the use of LED technology. The large rear hatch opens to allow easy placement of large items, an uncommon benefit not offered by many coupes.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The Eclipse's standard equipment includes a 162-horsepower four-cylinder engine, five-speed manual transmission, 17-inch five-spoke aluminum alloy wheels with all-season tires, air conditioning, AM/FM stereo with MP3-compatible CD player, cruise control, power windows, power locks, power mirrors, tire-pressure monitoring system, tilt steering wheel and keyless entry. Both the GS and GT models have well-bolstered sport seats, with the driver's side having six-way adjustment and adjustable lumbar support. Standard safety gear on all models includes driver's and front passenger's front airbags, with a passenger-side occupant-sensing system and seat-belt pretensioners, and front-seat side and side-curtain airbags. The GT adds a 263-horsepower V6 engine, six-speed manual transmission, 18-inch alloy wheels, integrated fog lamps, larger rear brakes and traction control.

Optional Equipment

One of the Eclipse's most notable options is the 650-watt Rockford Fosgate audio system featuring nine speakers and a 10-inch long-throw subwoofer. It accommodates six CDs or MP3 discs in its in-dash changer. Other options of note are arranged in packages. The Sun & Sound Package includes power sunroof, steering-wheel audio controls, auto-dimming rear-view mirror, center display with outside temperature and compass and the Rockford Fosgate stereo. The GT Premium Sport Package has everything the Sun & Sound Package offers plus heated leather seats, a power driver's seat and automatic climate control.

Under the Hood

Both Eclipse engines feature Mitsubishi Innovative Valve Electronic Control (MIVEC), which spreads the output over a wider engine speed range and optimizes power, emissions and fuel economy. The more desirable of the two engines, particularly for performance, is definitely the V6, although the tradeoff for the additional power is an expected reduction in fuel economy. With either engine, the automatic transmission has the Sportronic feature, which allows the driver to shift manually by moving the shift lever into the sports-mode gate.

2.4-liter four cylinder
162 horsepower at 6000 rpm
162 lb.-ft. of torque at 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/28 (manual), 20/26 (automatic)

3.8-liter V6
263 horsepower at 5750 rpm
260 lb.-ft. of torque at 4500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/25 (manual), 17/25 (automatic)

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2008 Mitsubishi Eclipse Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.8
Out of 10

Based on 387 Ratings for the 2006 - 2012 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.9/10
    Quality
    8.9/10
  • Reliability
    9.3/10
    Performance
    9.1/10
  • Comfort
    8.6/10
    Styling
    9.3/10

I should sell this car but i love it too much!

By on Friday, July 24, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Just an excellent machine"

Cons: "Rear visibility isn't great"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

Style and performance

"I have owned this car 3 years, it is by far the most reliable vehicle I've ever had NOTHING has been wrong with it EVER. Driving it you can feel that it is different from other cars; a fluke of engineering & more than the sum of its parts. The exhaust note seems tuned to fit the interior. My car looks, sounds and feels amazing. I bought an enhanced warranty which was a total waste of money. I desperately need a bigger vehicle for my hobbies but Ive been delaying for a full year now because I don't want to give up this car."

2 people out of 4 found this review helpful

Style and performance

incredibly durable and efficient vehicle

By on Monday, July 20, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 318,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "unbelievably sturdy and reliable"

Cons: "nothing except very poor turning radius for a car"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Used this car as a courier car on a grueling 300 mile+ a day on average, up and over a mountain range to the desert floor heat putting 300,000 miles on it in just under a 5 year period with only routine maintainence relative to the distance traveled without ANY breakdowns, and still running strong. the interior began to deteriorate somewhat, expected considering the massive usage, and being a SPORTS car,rather than a truck, it held up better than any of the many vehicles i've owned previously. Not to mention the recreational, off-road desert ventures it was put through, including snow storms and 119 degree desert trecks. Amazing vehicle"

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

A real head turner!

By on Thursday, July 09, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 110,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "Fun to drive!"

Cons: "Sm. trunk space. Bad streets/expensive tire costs"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"This vehicle is a real head turner. Classic sexy lines of this sport convertible have had every boy and man-boy excited about her lines. The smooth mechanism of the top is a convenience and another head turner to watch...transformer like action. The wide tires hold to the road with quick maneuvers, showing off the Mitsubishi's responsiveness. Accelerates, with ease leaving the crowd behind. Sporty yet just enough room in the two rear seats for guests. Seating is comfortable and not the skimpy seats one is use to in other sporty vehicles."

3 people out of 4 found this review helpful

underrated and fun do drive

By on Friday, June 19, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 87,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "grat power and great looks very reliable"

Cons: "a little road noise but I do have 20 inch rims"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"this is my second one bought my first brand new in 06 had a job loss and lost it have been trying to get another one ever since it is a blast to drive incredibly reliable and great to look at if you want to unlock a little more power just turn off the traction control it actually holds the car back a little everyone who rides with me is impressed great power at a great price I would highly recommend this car"

5 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Most reliable car I've ever owned

By on Sunday, May 03, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 125,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Mechanically Reliable Fun Quick Good efficiency."

Cons: "Clear coat replacement inevitable."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Mechanically after decent maintenance it drives like its off the lot after almost 10 years. Mitsu doesn't have the reputation for reliability but this model is the exception for some reason. Got the car new in 06. It still quick handles well and if I didn't need space for the growing family I would keep it till the wheels fell off. An excellent value that has outlasted friends hondas and toyotas. BUT: The paint. All eclipses with paint darker then white or grey have a clear coat defect where it just starts peeling off after a few years. The darker the color the worse it is apparently. You see it on all eclipses from maybe late 90's thru late 2000's. Theres a class action ruling against them for the defect but by the time it affects you it's usually too late to get any compensation. However the cost of a transmission on a v6 honda or acura of the same age, which owners of those cars would definitely have to replace by now, is greater the the cost of a new paint job. So, my paint looks bad atm. But I'm still faster happier and know that my car will not break than most other drivers with similar year models on the road. Decent milage for the hp too. Also if you buy, don't go with those eagle tires it comes with. They are overpriced and handle horribly. Get some michelins or something. Went to those cheaper michelins from the goodrich eagles and it was a whole new car. Tires affect handling greatly in this car."

5 people out of 7 found this review helpful

I absolutely LOVE my car. Waiting for 2015's!!!

By on Saturday, February 21, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 89,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Great price. Fun to drive. Great looking."

Cons: "No cons"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is the best car I have ever owned. Never a problem with it, handles great, very sporty looking, great gas mileage, no blind spots, comfortable, super hot heat, super cold air conditioning. Not much headroom for back seat passengers, but, I don't usually have anyone in back. I bought it new 2008. Lots of room in hatchback for carting stuff from grocery store & Home Depot! I have compliments constantly on its' looks. Sad they haven't come out with a new one yet. I usually trade up every 3 years."

9 people out of 15 found this review helpful

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