I don't think Mitsubshi should go anywhere near 4cyl engines in the 380! I used to drive a 1991 Magna, and while I will stress that they are one of the most comfortable 1991 cars you'll drive, I rarely dipped below 16L/10km in the city, compared to 12L/100km for the V6. I totally agree with the poster of this review, the 380 looks like good news. MMAL's not out of the doldrums yet, but other carmakers have faced bankruptcy and have come back big. Think BMW in the 1970's and Mazda and Nissan in the 80's. Kudos to you, MMAL!
I have driven several 380's, mostly base. Every 380 I have driven has had a consistent level of build quality. I am impressed by the fact that when you put your foot down, the nose lifts and charges away, like an angry bull, and when you brake, it pulls up like a bungee cord.
And now the 380 is into Series 2. Series 2 adds nothing ultra special, but renames the base to '380 ES', adds the new '380 SX' sports model, deletes '380 LS', downgrades 380 LX', upgrades '380 VRX' and downgrades '380 GT'. There are no extra performance, audio or driver-assist mods, just small features. However 'Wheels' magazine reports the possibility of a 190kW engine for 380 sports models, namely the VRX and GT.
A '240' would not be an unlikely possibility, with the 2.4 MIVEC engine used in the US Galant 'Mother ship'. This engine is a (somewhat) powerful, torquey and reliable motor, an evolution of the one used in the 1996-98 TE/TF Magna 4 cylinder sedans. They used a 2.4L 16 valve SOHC version. It proved to be 110% less smokey, more quiet, smooth and more reliable than the 1985-96 TM-TS 2.6L Astron II 4 cylinder predecessor. And it is rumoured that there is a diesel 380 in testing.
Even if MMAL's future as an Australian manufacturer is in doubt, the company will still be an importer of global Mitsubishi vehicles, which looks very exciting. The new Colt convertible and Colt Turbo, new Lancer, Outlander (MIVEC 2.4L and MIVEC V6), Triton (3.8L V6 and 3.2Di-D), a new Pajero on the horizon, and other new cars to come. So if manufacturing in Australia stops, why stop considering a Mitsubishi. A reliable, well-priced and quality product, they deserve more than they get.
Actually the 'review' was regarding the viability of Mitsubishi Motors Australia Limited as a local manufacturer, not just the 380 sedan. There was no review, just some misguided press activity from the ABC. A memo was sent out to MMAL workers and dealers regarding this speculation assuring that there has been no plan to shut the plant down. Even if the plant was to shut down, the company would still remain in Australia as an importer, much like Nissan.
I have no regrets whatsoever after buying my 380 Series II back in June. Fuel economy wise for a V6 is just great plus road handling and the acceleration!
Mitsubishi however lost on the marketing edge... the 380 had great reviews all round, but to drop the price after 6 months because of 'poor sales' cast an 'inferior' or 'problematic' car mentality with buyers. What a shame! Now that Toyota and Holden have come up with their own latest V6s, the 380 will find it hard to claim its rightful place as a Top Value for Money V6 :(.
I will definitely have to agree with the comments that have been posted here. I purchased my 380-VRX in November 2005 and it has been just awesome ever since. I have had no trouble with this car at all! way to go to the production employees at Mitsubishi's Adelaide, South Australia plant...
Also I would like to add that for a car these days to be as solid as the 380 is a miracle. I can attest to that as I hit a gutter doing 70kph during a defensive maneuver last night and the car rode through it very well, popped a tyre, busted a rim, bulged a rear tyre and bent the lower wishbone on left hand suspension. Isn't gonna cost a whole heap to repair either!. More praise has to go to them for keeping spare parts at a good price. $212 for a genuine replacement for the busted mag! (old mag ridiculously out of round)
@ 22,000Kms VERY happy with this purchase!
After all the problems with the new falcons and commodores I wouldn't hesitate to own a magna either.
Burnouts are not the major criteria that you buy a car by.
Resale values means I wouldn't buy a new one though. Mitsubishi needs to come up with some sort of buyback scheme to favor fleet buyers and a cheap straight lpg option to stay in the market. That would keep them going in Australia and cost them less in the long run than slashing prices. That only hurts and puts off the fleet buyers and adds the impression of inferiority.
Does Mitsubishi have much choice? They have to get people to buy the 380 somehow and price is usually a pretty big incentive. Hopefully sales will go up when people realise what a great car is being overlooked. I just hope Mitsubishi can build cars in Australia long enough to release a new 380 for when my lease expires!
The boot might be big enough to nearly hold a 44 gallon drum, but sadly it's not big enough to fit a gas cylinder if you want to convert it to LPG. A cylinder will fit, but because of the shape of the boot inside, it has to come so far forward from the dividing wall between the cabin and the boot, that you cannot get your spare tyre out of its well. The only option is to put a donut tank in the tyre well. This tank is more expensive than a normal cylinder, and if you still want to carry a spare tyre, it has to float about in the boot.
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