In a last minute attempt to clean off the slush, mud, salt, and everything else that the roads have thrown up, I thought I’d nip down to the petrol station. But the giant Zanussi was having other ideas. It was all going well when I drove in but the sensors took one look at the large rear wing that has been fitted exactly behind the glass pane I use to look through, and gave up.
Not a refusal to clean the car give up but a ‘we need to call an engineer’ give up. I decided it would be a good idea to casually smile and leave, vowing to use a kinder method to clean the car next time anyway.
Well designed too, with a distinct push towards making it cluttered and button-free. Much of this is helped by the slightly baffling optional Rockford Fosgate entertainment and navigation system.
It’s not baffling to use and the sound quality is excellent but having umpteen speakers and a huge sub woofer, complete with its own box, fitted in the left-hand side of the boot seems at odds with such a performance orientated machine. But then what it probably shows is that Mitsubishi knows its market and is not trying to compete with BMW, instead looking for those who have graduated from a line of Imprezas and Evos.
The ‘carbon effect’ plastic on them is a bit naff too and looks more like an MC Esher drawing than a lightweight material. But at least they do, once you’ve squeezed in, hold you admirably in place.
All of this seems to be nothing more than glitter and decoration around the two main features of this slightly scary-looking machine: the engine and the chassis. First of all the four-cylinder lump that sits up front. If you have to expense fuel on bands based on engine size this is not the car to go for.
There doesn’t seem to be the lag or laziness of the Subaru STI’s 2.5-litre boxer, just free revving response followed by time-warp speed. Forget first, second will do pretty much all you need, savagely shoving you back into the seat. It will rev to over 7,000rpm too and the shove only starts to dwindle just before that.
It’s incredible that with a 0-60mph time of four seconds this is not only one of the fastest cars in the world it is almost supercar territory. If it’s bang-for-bucks you are after suddenly it seems like good value.