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Motoring: Di-D unavailable gem

Nauman Farooq | Interrobang | Sports | November 26th, 2007

This week I will tell you about two great Mitsubishi's, but only one of which you can buy in Canada.

I am talking about Mitsubishi Colt Di-D and the Eclipse Spyder. I'll tell you about the Colt first.

This pocket sized diesel powered hatchback is sensational. I am honestly lost for words to describe how good this is.

This little car is attractive to look at, has a cool interior that will impress everyone, no matter what car they currently own, is comfortable, has a funky “Allshift” gear-box (which is a automated manual gearbox, like the sort you'll find in a Ferrari F430) and all this before I even tell you about its best feature, its engine.

The Colt Di-D is powered by a 1.5-litre, three-cylinder (yes, that is not a misprint), 12 valve, direct injected diesel, that produces 95 hp. That might not sound like a lot, but just remember, it also produces 155 lb/ft of torque, and that is a lot.

What this all means is this Colt is quite peppy on the road, especially the highway. I was amazed how quick it really was. Add in low fuel consumption, averaging 5.4-litres/100km that is incredible, and even better than the Honda Civic Hybrid I tested earlier this year. Even more surprising was how smooth the engine was at higher speeds, in fact the whole car is very stable, and relaxing, things no other small car I have ever come across has ever managed to do. I would call this Colt brilliant, but that might be an understatement.

This Colt is so good, I would happily put it in the list of the top-five cars I tested this year. However, sadly, the Colt is currently not sold in Canada. I was fortunate to test one of the vehicles Mitsubishi brought over from Europe for evaluation purposes.

If Mitsubishi were to take my advice, I'd have them bring this car and put it on sale here right away. Looking at European prices, this Colt will be priced around $20,000, and trust me, it is worth it. If this car is sold here I would buy one.

The Eclipse Spyder is a tad more expensive, selling closer to $40,000, but even that is a great car, sort of.

The Eclipse Spyder is not a sophisticated car, neither is it overly well built and its driving dynamics need some adjustments. The best way to describe the Eclipse Spyder GT-V6 is that it is like a high-school football player. Got the muscles, got the speed, but a bit short on talent and not the smartest kid in school.

You see the Eclipse Spyder feels like it has too much power for its own good. You drop the clutch a bit too quickly and it'll spin its front wheels way too easily. Put too much power coming out of a tight corner and you'll be playing a match of arm-wrestling with the steering wheel. But I don't care... these characteristics are part of the appeal of this car. I love the sound its 3.8-litre, V6 produces, I love using all of its 260 hp and 258 lb/ft of torque, and I love its slick six-speed manual gearbox.

Sure this car is not without its faults, there is plenty of room for improvement here, but that's ok, I still love it.

Here is proof Mitsubishi is making great cars and you should really consider one. I just wish I could buy the Colt Di-D Canadians deserve to be given the option to buy this car because if you look at all the practical cars I tested this year the Colt is honestly the best.

So if you are impressed by what I have to say, please write to Mitsubishi Cars Canada and request them to bring over the Colt Di-D. It is honestly worth it.
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