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2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES – Click above for high-res image gallery

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has named the Mitsubishi Lancer one of its top safety picks. The four-door sedan managed to be the first Mitsubishi that the Institute has tested to pass the new roll-over test with a "good" rating. As much as we like entertaining ourselves by thinking about the researchers flipping a bevy of cars and SUVs from 9-to-5, that isn't quite how the institute tests for rollover strength.

Instead, a large metal plate exerts a steady force on the roof of a vehicle until the crash structure deflects by five inches. At that point, the boffins measure the amount of force it took to bend the roof and compare it to the overall weight of the vehicle. From there, a strength-to-weight ratio can be established. Currently, the federal government requires a vehicle's roof to be able to withstand 1.5 times the weight of the car, and in order for a vehicle to earn a "good" rollover rating from the IIHS, the roof needs to be able to stand up to four times the weight of the vehicle.


  • 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES.
  • 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES.
  • 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES.
  • 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES.
  • 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES.
  • 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES.
  • 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES.
  • 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES.
  • 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES.
  • 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES.
  • 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES.
  • 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES.
  • 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer ES.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 26 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      So if the car can deflect up to 5" under roughly a 5-6k lb load, it passes? Color me unimpressed. I do not think there is a car made that has 5" clearance from my noggin. There are a lot of factors that can cause injury in a rollover, roof intrusion being just one. The biggest injury prevention is resistance to rollover in the first place. While passenger cars should be pretty good at this, SUVs and trucks vary quite a bit.

      Are they saying rollover resistance is not a factor in their rating? If so, the rating has very limited usefulness.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I've been driving 43 years without a roll over. Who cares.
      • 4 Years Ago
      "The four-door sedan managed to be the first small car the Institute has tested to pass the new roll-over test with a "good" rating."

      Zach, that statement is completely false. Other small cars with a "good" rating include the Civic, Corolla, and Imprezza.
        • 4 Years Ago
        http://www.iihs.org/ratings/default.aspx

        SMALL CARS

        Honda Civic
        4-door models (except Si)
        with optional ESC

        Kia Forte
        built after October 2009

        Kia Soul
        2010-11 models

        Mitsubishi Lancer

        Nissan Cube

        Scion xB

        Subaru Impreza
        (except WRX)

        Toyota Corolla

        Volkswagen Golf
        4-door models
      • 4 Years Ago
      i love this wonder cars.
      Dee
      • 4 Years Ago
      On most highways the average speed is posted at 65 miles per hour. Many people drive at 85 miles an hour because they think they can...until something happens and they find they can't control their vehicle. Maybe if these people did'nt drive so darn fast roll over safety would not be much of an issue.
      • 4 Years Ago
      That's because it's got 200lbs extra of steel over the competion.

      Ah, i knew there was something good about the Lancer. LOL
        • 4 Years Ago
        The 2.0 with a 5 speed manual easily gives you over 30 mpg in mixed driving. I just drove to Chicago on a tank of gas. 430 miles on 12.5 gallons, 34 mpg is pretty good. It takes about 10,000 miles to break the engine in. Besides I'll take the comfort of a larger heavier car on the highway over getting 37mpg in a tiny microhatch.

        The 2.0 is also underrated on the sticker and actually makes closer to 165hp than 153. If you throw a cold air intake you can almost drop the 0-60 sprint by one second. With around $500 in mods you can bring the car close to 200hp.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Bad MPG and power for it's engine size, partially due to weight, is what has always turned me off from the Lancer.

        A 2.0 can do a lot better. The 2.4 is even worse.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I got 33-34mpg hwy on long trips out of a '96 BMW 328is. The car was rated for 26mpg hwy here. That's a rear wheel drive 6 cylinder 2.8..

        A 2.0 can easily pull 40mpg. Ford and Hyundai's upcoming 2.0L motors should pull this off without a sweat.

        I didn't know that the mivec motors were good for tuning. At least they have that going for them.. but what you gain in high end power, you lose at the low end, which this car needs the most since the engine is undersized for that weight by about 400cc :P
        • 4 Years Ago
        I like the look of the Lancer too, but 2 doors too many :)

        And any car will do good on a long hwy trip :p.. on a gas car you can get anywhere from 2-15mpg better than the EPA rating. I used to do a 250 mile trip for a few years with a few different cars. ~35mpg is pretty so/so for a midsize 4 cylinder, actually
        • 4 Years Ago
        "~35mpg is pretty so/so for a midsize 4 cylinder, actually"

        I come from the UK and I'm very familiar with small engines, power outputs and expected fuel economy in this type of car. I managed to average 45mpg (imperial) or roughly 37mpg (US) on a freeway run at a steady 60-65mph in a US-spec Lancer. Considering this is a 2.0 litre unit pumping out 153bhp and carrying some 3,000lbs in weight, I felt that was pretty good - and certainly a good deal better than the 2.0 litre Zetec unit in the old Focus.

        However, in mixed urban/highway driving - especially in adverse weather conditions - fuel consumption was quite heavy.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Bloke: Yep, i'd feather foot it on the highway, but even if i really stepped on it, i'd be pulling 31-32mpg over that same long trip.

        I noticed that the 318/325 didn't get much better fuel economy on the highway. On those long trips, it's really about aerodynamics and weight. I wouldn't have called the e36 particularly aerodynamic, would you? :)
        • 4 Years Ago
        Compared to the big goofy grin on the new 3, the stubby porky look of the new Sentra, the seen it before and all ready forgotten looks of the Corolla and the Starfleet shuttle look of the Civic, I think the baby shark with an under bite look of the Lancer is the best.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "I got 33-34mpg hwy on long trips out of a '96 BMW 328is. The car was rated for 26mpg hwy here. That's a rear wheel drive 6 cylinder 2.8.."

        That's a feather-like foot you have, then again you probably have good power-to-weight. My old '97 e36 316 Touring managed about 45-46mpg on a run - roughly 37-39mpg US. These days, a new 318 get achieve almost 7 or 8 mpg more.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Actually the current Lancer is a quite competent car in its segment, while it doesn't have the MPG of a Civic, it out performs almost everything in its class (maybe except for Mazda 3), plus it has excellent handling/road manners. And considering the fact that Mitsubishi is prone to big incentives, I just don't see how could anyone buy a Corolla, Sentra, or Elantra over the current Lancer. One thing that Mitsu could definitely improve upon is the use of soft plastic materials on the interior but the new Outlander Sport shows that Mitsu has learned.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I bet the new Fiesta does even better.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Well considering that the Yaris, Fit, Accent, Rio, Versa, SX4, xD and Aveo are ALL NOT top safety picks, I'd say that your expectations are quite high for the little Ford.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Perhaps. I read that the Fiesta A and B-pillars are "fashioned from ultra-high-strength aluminized boron steel." Not just high-strength..."ultra" high-strength. Is there anything that beats ultra?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Can't wait for the day I see four Lancers stacked upright, upside down, in the world's most unlikely car accident.

      And yes, I'm ignoring passengers for this, leave me alone.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Sit. Roll over. Good car.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Mitsubishi needs to improve their dealer network in America.
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