Is A Mitsubishi Eclipse A Good First Car? Find Out Here!

A few people ask us – Is a Mitsubishi Eclipse a good first car?

Some vehicles are more suitable for first time drivers than others. Maybe you are a teenager looking to buy your first car. Or you have relatively new experience driving and want a dependable vehicle. 

Whatever your purpose may be, finding a good first car is important to avoid numerous problems along the way. Plus, the fewer problems you have, the cheaper the upkeep cost. This is why it is good to think carefully whether you should consider buying a Mitsubishi Eclipse as a first car or not.

Here is everything you need to know about the Mitsubishi Eclipse and whether it is worth your time and money. Let’s dive into it.

is a mitsubishi eclipse a good first car

Is A Mitsubishi Eclipse A Good First Car?

When in search of a first car, you want to look not only at the aesthetics but also the handling and overall comfort. The warranty should be good, and there should be safety features. The Eclipse offers all of these things, which is why many people wonder – is A Mitsubishi Eclipse a good first car?

The Mitsubishi Eclipse is a reliable vehicle that resulted from a collaboration between Chrysler and Mitsubishi. There are a few cool features of the Eclipse including excellent tuner engine options. The engines used are similar as the ones in Lancer EVO, 3000GT, and other Mitsubishis. However, if you prefer to have a greater power from your Eclipse, then the 6G7 and 4G63 engine are your best bet. 

The base specifications of the G1 variants include the 4G63, which is naturally aspirated. It is basically easy to modify and tune and has the same build structure that you can find in the 4G63T. When you rebuild this with refreshed or new peripherals, the approximate horsepower you can get is at 200, for the NA 4G63.

But the only drawback with the 4G63T in a Mitsubishi Eclipse is that it is old. This is why you can only expect a lower maximum power output. However, with the GSX, the RWD conversion is not necessary since it is built on an AWD platform.

Another thing about the Mitsubishi Eclipse is the aesthetics. It really catches your eye, so it is enticing for those looking for a first car. Although the aftermarket support is not the best, and you are limited to wings and wheels, we can still say that the Eclipse is captivating.

At first glance, you may think that the Eclipse does not look like a fast car, it is most definitely satisfying to drive. You can even forget the speed you are driving it at, until you see the numbers on your speedometer. You will love how fast it can go and we have clocked in at 7000 RPM. In terms of handling, it is not comparable with the much better Honda Integra. Yet, you most certainly cannot complain because it still works.

While the JDM car prices have gone up over the years, the cost of the Mitsubishi Eclipse has remained fairly reasonable. You should be able to get yourself a G4 for under $10,000. So, if you are in search of a fairly affordable first car, the Eclipse is an okay choice. 

Important Points To Consider

Now that we have mentioned the good points, let us look at the not-so-good ones. First, is the interior. The Eclipse does not quite have the finest interior since the dashboard and door panels are crafted from cheap plastics. The sad thing is that as time goes by, plastic tends to discolor and crack. So, if you frequently have your car exposed to heat and sun, this could be an issue.

You may choose to refurbish your plastic interior trims. However, you can no longer revive those that have cracked. In this case, the only option is to remove them, which can be quite expensive. The seats, as we have observed, were also bolstered quite poorly. So, you are better off buying aftermarket seats. 

Additionally, the door handles are not the best. The outside ones break while the inside ones jam. There are several owners that recommend only pulling the outside handle halfway and supporting the door by pulling it by the edge as you open it. If it breaks, you can always replace the spring, yet you need to take the door panel out first.

If you intend to work on your Eclipse and update it, you may realize that it is not exactly easy to do so. Removing the transmission and engine to upgrade these parts may be a bit tricky. This is why it is not suitable for DIY-ers who want to further improve their Eclipse with aftermarket parts.

Keep in mind some common issues with the Eclipse include transmission failure, which is the major fault of this vehicle according to many owners. Hence, if you are buying a secondhand one, be sure to test drive it prior to signing papers. As for the automatic transmission version, it should be smoother to shift your gear. Yet, over time, the transmission may need to be rebuilt or replaced if high temperatures from friction cause damage.

As for a manual transmission Eclipse, shifting tends to become clunky over the years while the clutch pedal gets spongy. Be on the lookout for vibrations and odd noises when accelerating from a stop or shifting gears, which are common transmission symptoms.

Lastly, the Eclipse is not spared from oil leaks from the valve cover gasket, head gasket, and the rear main seal. Check for signs of an oil leak before things get worse including power loss, white smoke from your exhaust and high engine temperatures.

Read More: Is An Audi A3 A Good First Car? Surprising Facts You Never Knew!

Final Thoughts

Is A Mitsubishi Eclipse a good first car? You can easily get a used Mitsubishi Eclipse for about $4000 with very few issues. But it is not the easiest to maintain and big problems requiring repairs and replacement arise over time. So, it is good to factor in the upkeep costs before you purchase this car to decide if it is worth it or not.

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