The 2020 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 is a subcompact sedan that’s relatively cheap to acquire and economical to run. Naturally, a budget-priced new car like this won’t be the most refined vehicle out there, but not everyone has the luxury of being able to choose whatever they want.
There are trade-offs and considerations to take into account. For example, if the reassurance of a new-car warranty over 5 years/60,000 miles along with a powertrain warranty of 10 years/100 miles sounds preferable to quality cabin materials, sound insulation and ride comfort, then the G4 deserves a place on a buyer’s short list.
If 41 miles per gallon on the highway is preferable to a healthy amount of engine power, then find out where the nearest Mitsubishi dealer is. And if low-cost personal transportation with a trunk is more important than anything else, a Mirage G4 could be A-okay.
However, do some homework and check out other cars in this class. And don’t forget that the same kind of outlay spent on a certified pre-owned (CPO) car from, say, Honda or Toyota could bring more space and higher quality yet still deliver the same kind of reliability.
The Mitsubishi Mirage subcompact hatchback is reviewed separately.
What’s New for 2020?
The basic ES trim now has automatic climate control as standard. A new mid-level LE (Limited Edition) trim is introduced. This results in some redistribution of features. See the 2020 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 models for sale near you
What We Like
- Decent equipment levels
- Availability of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration
What We Don’t
- General low-rent aura
- Lack of sophistication
$15,990 to $18,640
Under the Mirage G4’s hood is a 1.2-liter 3-cylinder engine rated at a fairly feeble 78 horsepower and 74 lb-ft of torque. This is sent to the front wheels through either a 5-speed manual transmission — which is standard in the basic ES version — or a continuously variable transmission. The CVT is optional in the ES and standard in the LE and SE trims.
The Environmental Protection Agency estimates fuel consumption for the manual version at 33 mpg in the city, 40 mpg on the highway and 35 mpg in combined driving. The CVT adjusts those figures to 35 mpg city/41 mpg hwy/37 mpg combined.
Standard Features and Options
The 5-seater 2020 Mitsubishi Mirage G4 comes in ES, LE and SE trim levels.
The ES ($15,990) starts with 14-in steel wheels, hill-start assist, LED taillights, power windows, locks and mirrors, 60/40 split folding rear seats, tilt-only steering wheel adjustment, 6-way manually adjustable driver’s seat, 4-way manually adjustable front passenger seat, cruise control, automatic climate control, rear seat pass-through, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, 7-in infotainment display, 4-speaker audio system with AM, FM and HD radio, auxiliary audio input and a USB port.
The automatic transmission costs an extra $1,200.
The LE ($18,090) adds the CVT, 15-in alloy wheels finished in black, black side mirror housings, driver’s seat armrest, 6.5-in Smartphone Link Display with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob with red stitching, black fabric seating surfaces with red accents, a CD and MP3 player and a Limited Edition badge.
The SE ($18,640) brings dark, chrome-finished, 15-in alloy wheels, body-colored side mirrors, keyless entry and ignition, fog lamps and heated front seats.
Options include interior lighting and a 300-watt Rockford Fosgate audio system upgrade.
Trunk space is 12.6 cu ft. That’s OK, but the Toyota Yaris has 13.5 cu ft.
The Mirage G4 comes standard with 4-wheel anti-lock brakes (discs up front, drums at the rear), stability control, hill-start assist and seven airbags (front, front side, driver knee and side curtain).
The Mirage G4 has not been through the government’s crash test program, but its Mirage hatchback sibling earned four of five stars overall, with four stars for side impact protection and four stars for rollover safety. The independent Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the G4 its highest rating of Good in three of five main categories. But side impact protection was marked one rung down as Acceptable, while the (tricky) small-overlap frontal impact test resulted in the second-lowest rating of Marginal on the driver’s side. It hasn’t been subjected to that same test on the passenger side.
Behind the Wheel
To no one’s surprise, acceleration is hardly thrusting with this small 3-cylinder engine. At high revs, such as when passing or merging, engine and transmission noise can also be intrusive, particularly with the CVT. But thanks to its modest dimensions and small turning circle, the Mirage G4 is easy to park, and tight city spaces are easy to negotiate.
There’s also a pleasant amount of standard equipment for the money. Some competitors only provide hand-crank windows and manual door locks, but the Mirage G4 has powered versions, along with Bluetooth and USB connectivity.
However, things are still basic, even for this budget-conscious corner of the automotive world. The steering wheel doesn’t adjust for reach, as taller drivers will discover. Rear passenger space is adequate by segment standards, but not as generous as the Nissan Versa, for example.
Other Cars to Consider
2020 Chevrolet Sonic — This is more fun to drive than the Mirage G4, and with a nicer interior.
2020 Nissan Versa — If passenger space is a priority, the Versa offers ample headroom and a massive back seat. There’s not much else to recommend it, though.
2020 Toyota Yaris — The Yaris a more pleasant interior than the G4, and its engine has at least some pep by comparison.
Used Honda Civic — The Civic is well-engineered and well-built, and it’s a fairly sure bet that Honda spent way more money developing it than Mitsubishi could ever devote to the Mirage G4. Look for one in Honda’s certified pre-owned (CPO) program.
Let’s assume that whoever buys a Mirage G4 will want an automatic transmission. In which case, try and stretch to the LE to enjoy some extra features along with the CVT. Find a Mitsubishi Mirage G4 for sale