1995 Mitsubishi FTO GR 2.0 V6 Non-Mivec from Australia and New Zealand

Summary:

Power, economy and looks..

Faults:

Really not a lot..

Air conditioning did this funny pulse thing, but it's very temporary, and fixes itself after 10 minutes.

Starter motor stopped working (what can you expect from a starter that's done 200km+). And that's it..

General Comments:

Awesome car to own!

Despite mine having really high kms, it was still in really good condition. The interior was great (apart from a few Mitsubishi electrical gremlins with the A/C, everything worked as it should and nothing broke).

Mechanically car is still in awesome condition. The dreaded Mitsubishi tick is slowly getting worse, but a dose of MBL8 fixes that problem. Previous owner spent the big money doing the cam-belt and water-pump, and in the 8k I've had it, the only thing that needed doing was the rear brakes..

Car is a dream to drive, the V6 is incredibly torquey at low RPM, but keeps the power going until 7000 RPM! (doesn't redline till 7500, but I find it better to change earlier to keep in the power curve); easily gets 120kph in 2nd gear!

The ride is awesome, firm, but takes the bumps well. Only bad bit is it has a tendency to roll in the corners, I don't think the heavy V6 helps this. But in the handling section it's amazing, the best handling FWD car I've driven. Mine does have wider 205 tires than the standard 195s, which makes a huge difference, both in handling and getting the power down.

Fuel economy is actually quite good; if you keep the rpm low and drive nicely, it'll treat you nicely. 500-600ks from a tank is achievable on a long trip.

Definitely an underrated car here in NZ, would own another one in a heartbeat. Am going to struggle to find another car that has the same smooth power delivery, with the same awesome handling and economy.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th December, 2011

1995 Mitsubishi FTO GPX 2.0L Mivec from Australia and New Zealand

Summary:

Great car

Faults:

Starter motor went at 153000km. $500 AUD.

Thrust bearing is noisy, which means the clutch needs to be replaced soon. But still drives fine.

Power steer pump is leaking and makes noises on full lock. Common fault.

Driver's side mirror won't retract. Really minor.

Sounds like a diesel at idle due to the tappets. Common problem and adjustable on the GPX.

Side windows rattle when down. Common problem and an easy fix.

General Comments:

Great car!

Very stylish, and still looks good 15 years later. Some people are shocked when I tell them it's 15 years old.

The 2.0 V6 Mivec engine is awesome! It is fuel efficient (gets 580 km to a tank, city and highway driving) yet still powerful. Above 5500rpm when the Mivec engages, it sounds like a racing car, especially with a aftermarket air filter, and the acceleration pushes you back in your seat. But below 4000rpm it's quiet, and just feels like an ordinary V6.

I strongly recommend getting the manual version of this car, as it is better suited to the V6. 0-100 takes 6.5 seconds, quarter mile in 14.8 in stock form. Just remember, this car used to compete with Celicas, Preludes, Integras, and it's FWD, but it handles very well for a FWD car with minimal understeer.

When it comes to maintenance, some spare parts can be a little expensive and hard to find, but remember these cars were based on the Lancer/Mirage platform, so some parts are interchangeable, and the Aus delivered HJ Galant uses a similar V6 engine, so parts are interchangeable with that as well. Still drives great after 164000kms, even with the problems mentioned above.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th February, 2011

1995 Mitsubishi FTO from Australia and New Zealand

Summary:

It's very niiiice!

Faults:

I suspect it has a slight water leak. Got hot once. Never has again once I topped it up. Needless to say, I check it once in a while now... Oh yeah, and the heater doesn't work. Air con does though.. Cold winter road trips.. Drive faster to get the blood flowing...

General Comments:

Lovely to look at. That design is really one of the stand-out efforts from a Japanese manufacturer. The accentuated front arches crossing the bonnet line harks back to some serious '60's exotica, and now emulated by the new Maserati Gran Turismo. Bit of Aston, bit of Lancia Stratos too maybe. Lovely. Begs the question 'who was doing who in the industry back then???'

I really wanted a Fiat Coupe, but try finding one of these for the same dollars as the FTO. I suspect the Mitsi might just run away with the reliability prize as well. Perhaps these cars are getting a bit long in the tooth, but mine was immaculate, so stands out and doesn't really look its age at all. I find the way the light shines and reflects over its curves quite pleasing. Nice in the evening when it's just been washed.

Performance. I gave it a few stars for this, and it's probably a bit hard to gauge as it seems to be pretty relaxed about town. I putt about in too high a gear a lot of the time, because it will do so happily, and that also saves me some gas, which I can then expend if I get a straight stretch, a hill or wish to be away from the lights first. When it will happily scream its 2 litre Mivec head off to the 8200 limiter. The motorway on-ramp is the best place to explore this, though I think 2nd will run out to 110-115kph, so best to beware on that one. Frankly I feel it is more than adequate as, while it lacks the wallop of a turbo, by 4000rpms, it is struggling to find grip, being front drive, and I've had an episode where it wanted to steer into the sea on a straight piece of road when I gave it some welly to overtake. That aside it, err.. handles like it's on rails, and I've been more than happy to throw it into corners at speeds as sane as I dare, which it will happily negotiate.

This brings me to my biggest complaint. The steering. It has a nice quick rack, which is great through the twisties, and I'm sure on track days, but requires much attention on the open road. A nervous twitch will see you changing lanes if you lose focus. The feel as well is fine, but somewhat digital - a la' PlayStation, so it's hard to grasp the absolute limits of this car, high though they may be.. It will certainly deliver more than I've ever asked, but I suspect if you get to the point where it says no, you will be traveling at a speed from which, at best you will soil yourself... Alas, as such it possibly robs you of that little thrill you might otherwise get where man and machine become one... making sweet sweet love on the road baby. No, I won't include that - sounds crass...

The interior is nothing to write home about, but is very functional, so I don't really care. The controls are all just Mitsi parts bin fodder, and so lack the nice soft touch of a Euro, but won't be turning to liquid snot any time soon either. The seats are deeply bolstered, and hold you well. I'd say the driving position is spot on for my lanky frame. In the rear it would be difficult to swing a mouse, but I'm not fussed.

So in summary. Yes I'm quite happy with my FTO. There's nothing that I dislike about it. That 6 is very civilised indeed, and likes a good spanking. I wonder why anyone would have a 4 at all over this. Perhaps it's not the ultimate ultimate, but you could shell out more cash and get more cylinders and capacity, which would obviously be check mate, but that's all relative, and I'll happily stick with my little peach a while longer.. Thumbs up!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th September, 2010