Mitsubishi of America has finally announced that the five-door hatch Sportback model will be joining the Lancer model range. While it’s been no secret that this car has been in the pipeline for months, at least now the news is official. The Sportback will arrive this summer as a 2010 model, and will be available in two varieties.
The entry-level Sportback will be the GTS model (already offered as a 4-door Lancer). The GTS is a front-wheel drive Lancer powered by a 2.4 liter, 168hp four-cylinder. Buyers have a choice of a 5-speed manual, or a so-called 6-speed CVT transmission.Ã‚Â
The Ralliart Sportback will be the top-range model (also offered as a 4-door Lancer). The Ralliart is powered by the Evo’s detuned 2.0 liter turbocharged four cylinder, making 237hp, but is all-wheel drive. Your transmission choices are the 6-speed twin clutch Sportronic, or the aforementioned 6-speed CVT. No true manual transmission is available on the Ralliart.Ã‚Â
I welcome the Sportback to the Lancer family. It retains its razor-sharp looks with a good deal more practicality. One complaint about the standard four-door Lancer was a small trunk, so the Sportback should go a long way to addressing those concerns. Still, it is a pity Mitsubishi did not see fit to offer the Ralliart with manual tranny. In sum, Mitsubishi has an arrow in its quiver to battle the five-door Subaru Impreza WRX.