For 2012, Mitsubishi introduces a new SE trim with standard all-wheel drive (AWD), heated seats and outside mirrors, a continuously variable automatic transmission, and the GT model's more powerful 2.4-liter engine. Additionally, the Lancer Sportback no longer offers a manual transmission and drops the performance-based Ralliart edition from the lineup.
Changes for 2010 include new tail lamps, a short pole antenna and a larger side air dam design, as well as the addition of electronic stability control on all models. The GTS trim receives a new high-contrast multi-color LCD display, leather-wrapped parking brake and new interior chrome accents.
Although the high-tech, high-performance Lancer Evolution is among the most respected, most sought-after enthusiast cars on the planet – a bona fide "bargain exotic" at its sub-$35,000 starting price – the Lancer Sedan on which it's based has never amounted to much more than an also-ran in this country's currently-burgeoning small car market. After a thorough makeover last year that combined more aggressive sheetmetal, a more invigorating performance and a host of compelling in-cabin technologies, the 2010 Lancer is now well-positioned for success.