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You'll Like The 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse If...

Exotic-car looks, a price starting in the low $20,000 range, and a good warranty are among the biggest draws to the 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse. And though lower trim levels have only marginal power, the high-end GT version with a V6 packs a bite with 265 horsepower.

You May Not Like The 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse If...

If you want performance to match your budget sports car’s looks, you’d be better off going with a rear-wheel-drive car like the BRZ, FR-S, Mazda Miata or Chevy Camaro, or an all-wheel-drive hot-hatch like the Subaru WRX.

What's New

Mitsubishi is marking the Eclipse’s final year with an SE (special edition) version for both the coupe and Spyder. SE models add styling cues such as smoked-out alloy wheels, black side mirrors and unique decals. For the coupe, four trims are available: GS, GS Sport, SE and GT. The convertible can be had in GS Sport, SE and GT trims.

Interior Features

Though helped by an abundance of glass and a curvaceous dash that complements the car’s exterior, the Eclipse’s cabin feels behind those of its rivals. Buttons and knobs are simple to locate and use, but look plain. Features such as heated seats and Bluetooth are optional, but a navigation system option is nowhere to be found. The steering wheel tilts but does not telescope, making it challenging for drivers to find a perfect fit. The front bucket seats are supportive at least. The two rear seats, however, are very tight.

Exterior Features

Design is one of the strengths of the 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse. Swooping curves, a forward stance and standard 18-inch wheels make this Mitsubishi look sporty indeed. Flared fenders give a muscular look, and twin tailpipes benefit further from polished exhaust tips. Eclipse Spyder models have a power-operated soft top that opens in 19 seconds. SE models appear edgier thanks to darkened wheels and black side decals that run along the bottom body panels. High-intensity projectors help light the way in front on all but base Eclipse models, and LED taillights at the rear help modernize the car.

Driving Impressions

The 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse is not a lightweight, flingable sports car, but it is still tuned well enough to have some fun on twisty back roads. Both the 4-cylinder and the 6-cylinder engine choices provide the kind of low-end torque needed to sprint across an intersection, though torque-steer is noticeable with the more powerful V6. A 5-speed manual transmission is only available in base forms of the coupe, and the only other transmission offered for 4-cylinder models is an automatic with the same number of gears – four – as the Eclipse had when it debuted back in 1990. The Mitsubishi Eclipse benefits from crisp steering and strong brakes. The interior is ergonomically pleasing and the front seats are first-rate, though rear-seat room is cramped. The Eclipse’s swooping roofline creates blind spots, especially in convertible form with the top up.

Pricing Notes

A 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse coupe starts at just over $20,000 for a base GS version with manual transmission and climbs to about $32,000 for a loaded GT. Spyder convertible models start at just under $29,000 and top out around $35,000 for a loaded version. The Eclipse coupe’s base price is less than that of the Chevrolet Camaro, Hyundai Genesis Coupe, Subaru BRZ and Scion FR-S. It is more expensive than a Kia Forte Koup and Honda Civic Coupe. The Eclipse Spyder is pricier than a Mazda MX-5 Miata and less expensive than a Camaro Convertible. Check the Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area are paying for the Mitsubishi Eclipse coupe and Eclipse Spyder. The Mitsubishi Eclipse’s predicted resale value is only marginal.

Notable Equipment

All 2012 Eclipse coupes come with air conditioning, power windows/doors, 18-inch wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, cruise control, folding rear seats, keyless entry, an alarm system and six airbags. Convertibles feature a power-operated fabric roof with hard-shell tonneau cover, premium sound system, Bluetooth, backup camera, and a 6-way power driver’s seat.

Notable Options

Options are rather slim for the 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse, with most being bundled with trim packages. Among the features are leather seats, a backup camera (with the display in the rearview mirror), xenon headlights, a sunroof and automatic climate control. Other factory-installed options include remote engine start, a rear wing spoiler and an aero kit.

Favorite Features

ROCKFORD FOSGATE AUDIO SYSTEMStandard on all but the base coupe, this 9-speaker premium sound system is good for 650-watts of musical mayhem and features a 6-disc in-dash CD changer and auxiliary input for MP3 players.10-YEAR/100,000-MILE POWERTRAIN WARRANTYMitsubishi’s warranty is highlighted by a generous 10 years or 100,000 miles for the powertrain. The Eclipse is also covered bumper-to-bumper for five years/60,000 miles and comes with roadside assistance for five years/unlimited miles.

Under the Hood

Eclipse coupes and convertibles are powered by one of two engines – a 162-horsepower 4-cylinder or a 265-horsepower V6. The V6 is only available in GT models and is linked to a 5-speed automatic transmission with manual shifting mode. The V6 requires premium gasoline, while the 4-cylinder engines can run on regular. Other than the 5-speed manual in the base version of the Eclipse coupe, the rest of the 4-cylinder models use an antiquated 4-speed automatic. All Eclipse models are front-wheel-drive.2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS, GS Sport, SE2.4-liter inline-4162 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm162 lb-ft of torque @ 4,000 rpmEPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/28 mpg (Coupe), 20/27 mpg (Spyder)2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT3.8-liter V6265 horsepower @ 5,750 rpm262 lb-ft of torque @ 4,500 rpmEPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/25 mpg (Coupe), 16/24 mpg (Spyder)

Editors' Notes

After more than two decades on the market and four generations, 2012 marks the final year for the Mitsubishi Eclipse coupe and Spyder (convertible). While this 4-seater once stood out for boasting high-performance features like a turbocharged engine and all-wheel drive at a reasonable price, in recent years the Eclipse has become a merely “sporty” front-wheel-drive car that favors the comfort side of the equation to attract a broader range of buyers. Although the 2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse boasts curvaceous looks, a low starting price and a powerful V6 engine option, it lags rivals like the Subaru BRZ/Scion FR-S, Chevrolet Camaro, Kia Forte Koup, Honda Civic Si and Hyundai Genesis coupe when it comes to powertrain options, refinement and performance.

Road Test Video Reviews

2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse Owner Reviews

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Mitsubishi Eclipse short details.

2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse

My car is manual. Mainly the complications are easy fixes. If you are in a cold state that gets snow. I don't recommend driving in it. The car is really low which makes it hard to drive. I don't personally take this vehicle out during winter only for the lighter seasons. Such as spring, fall and summer. Mainly the biggest disadvantages is if you mess up the clutch, is your transmission goes with it. So if your looking to learn how to drive manual I suggest a Honda. It's easier to learn and cheaper to fix if you mess up.

- Magdalena S

It's a okay car just the blind spot is a deal breaker for me.

2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS

Blind spot is really bad like really bad the car is nice looking but I wouldn't buy it because of that reason alone. It's been reliable for sure but does hydroplane a lot for a car with new tires. The back seat is really small but it's a two seater. The interior is really keep plastic but the car itself runs good.

- Robert M

Nice and reliable throughout the years, but it's a super douchey looking car.

2012 Mitsubishi Eclipse SE

It has been fairly reliable. Cosmetic issues have been the main issue. The interior of the trunk and the vinyl above the glove box keeps coming off. The seats don't go all the way back and are uncomfortable. It's turn radius is very wide and room is cramped. Those are really the only negatives I have experienced.

- Jae S

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