2016 Mitsubishi Lancer Review
2016 Mitsubishi Lancer Review
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Edmunds' Expert Review
by the Edmunds Experts
- Available 2.4-liter engine provides quick acceleration
- secure and sporty handling when going around turns.
- Both engines are noisy, especially when paired to the standard CVT
- subpar interior materials quality
- no available telescoping steering wheel
- modest trunk space with a small opening
- below-average fuel economy for a small sedan.
For 2016, the Mitsubishi Lancer gets a revamped continuously variable transmission (CVT) and revised front-end styling, including standard LED daytime running lights, while all models come with four-wheel disc brakes, automatic climate control, Fuse voice controls and a new center console with a USB port. The base ES also adds alloy wheels, foglights and a color driver information display, along with expanded optional features (including the 2.4-liter engine with all-wheel drive), and a new SEL trim joins the fray. The turbocharged Ralliart model has been discontinued.
The 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer is one of a few options in the compact car segment that provides all-wheel drive as an option. If you live in an area with a lot of wet weather or snow, that's a definite bonus. Read more to find out what else the 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer has to offer.
In an attempt to make the 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer more attractive in a highly competitive segment, the Japanese automaker has added fresh front-end styling, an overhauled CVT and a host of new standard features. Trouble is, this Mitsubishi has been in production for a full decade without a redesign, and it shows. Fuel economy with the base 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine trails class leaders by a wide margin, while the optional 2.4-liter four is as thirsty as some modern V6s. The Lancer also struggles with basic refinement and ergonomic issues, such as coarse noises from the 2.0-liter engine, mediocre interior materials and a tilt-only steering wheel.
The 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer's advanced age works against it in this hotly contested class.
The Lancer does retain the advantage of available all-wheel drive, an unusual offering that makes it more attractive to buyers in snowy climes. But if it's AWD you're after, the 2016 Subaru Impreza is a better bet. And if you're cool with front-wheel drive, there are many excellent alternatives, including the superb new 2016 Honda Civic, the sleek and fuel-efficient 2016 Mazda 3 and the recently updated 2016 Ford Focus. Ultimately, the 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer may offer appealing features at an attractive price, but it's not close to the head of this class.
Performance & mpg
The 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer ES is powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 148 horsepower and 145 pound-feet of torque. A five-speed manual transmission is standard, while a CVT is optional. EPA-estimated fuel economy stands at 30 mpg combined (27 city/35 highway) with the CVT and 28 mpg combined (24/34) with the manual.
The rest of the Lancer lineup is powered by a 2.4-liter four-cylinder (optional on the ES) that makes 168 hp and 167 lb-ft of torque. The SE and SEL come standard with the CVT and all-wheel drive, and the ES also gets the CVT/AWD pairing when optioned with the larger engine. This powertrain achieves an EPA-estimated 26 mpg combined (23 city/31 highway).
The GT gets a five-speed manual gearbox and front-wheel drive as standard, while its optional CVT is paired with front-wheel drive and features a Manual mode with simulated gear ratios and shift paddles. The manual GT checks in at 25 mpg combined (22/31) with the manual and 27 mpg combined (24/31) with the CVT.
Standard safety features on all 2016 Mitsubishi Lancers include front seat side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags and a driver knee airbag. Stability control, traction control and antilock brakes are standard across the board. After years of reserving four-wheel disc brakes for higher trim levels, Mitsubishi has thankfully made them standard for 2016. A rearview camera is standard on all Lancers except the ES. Rear parking sensors are sold as an accessory on all trim levels.
In government crash tests, the Lancer received four out of five stars for overall crashworthiness, including four stars for frontal protection and four stars for side protection. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awarded the Lancer its top score of "Good" in moderate-overlap frontal-offset, side-impact and roof-strength crash tests. In the small-overlap frontal-offset test, the Lancer earned the second highest "Acceptable" rating. Its seat/head restraint design was rated "Good" for whiplash protection in rear impacts.
On the road, the 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer's standard 2.0-liter engine disappoints with its unrefined noises under hard acceleration. Opting for the 2.4-liter four-cylinder improves refinement and increases the fun quotient, especially when paired with the GT's standard five-speed manual transmission. Fuel economy plummets, however. The 2.4-liter Lancer is at the back of the pack in this regard.
The 2016 Lancer is more enjoyable if you get the 2.4-liter engine, but you won't love the fuel economy that comes with it.
The Lancer's suspension delivers confident handling and a decent ride quality. Buyers looking for improved driving dynamics will find the GT model's sport-tuned suspension to be more rewarding, though the larger wheels and tires generate more noise on certain types of pavement.
Inside, the 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer has a look that's rather plain, with gauges and controls laid out in a manner that emphasizes function over form. While there's nothing wrong with that, it bears noting that the abundance of hard plastics cheapens the overall effect. Mitsubishi's voice-activation system, dubbed Fuse, makes it possible to control the audio and navigation systems, but it lacks the flexibility of competing systems. Likewise, while the 6.1-inch center touchscreen operates intuitively, its graphics fall short of the standard set by rival sedans.
The Navigation System package brings this larger 7-inch touchscreen, but its graphics and interface are dated.
Up front, seat comfort is generally good, though tall drivers will likely wish for more thigh support and a telescoping steering wheel. The backseats are surprisingly spacious, with a goodly amount of legroom. The trunk is on the small side, however, with just 12.3 cubic feet of cargo capacity, a number that drops to 11.8 cubic feet with the Rockford Fosgate audio system's subwoofer installed. The 60/40-split rear seatbacks fold down, however, for added cargo-carrying flexibility.
2016 Mitsubishi Lancer models
The 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer is a small sedan available in four trim levels: ES, SE, SEL and GT.
The entry-level ES comes with the 2.0-liter engine, 16-inch alloy wheels, foglights, LED running lights, heated mirrors with integrated turn signals, remote keyless entry, automatic climate control, a height-adjustable driver seat, 60/40-split folding rear seatbacks, a tilt-only steering wheel, full power accessories, cruise control, a color driver information screen, Bluetooth, Fuse voice controls and a four-speaker sound system with a CD player and a USB port.
Although the 2016 Lancer's basic control layout stretches back a full decade, you can still enjoy a number of contemporary features.
The SE adds two-tone alloy wheels, keyless entry and ignition, heated front seats, a rearview camera, a 6.1-inch touchscreen interface and a six-speaker sound system with satellite radio and HD radio.
Step up to the SEL trim level and you get automatic headlights, automatic wipers, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, upgraded interior trim, leather upholstery and a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob.
The GT throws in 18-inch two-tone alloy wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, a sunroof, a rear spoiler, heated front seats, soft-touch trim on the front doors and a nine-speaker Rockford Fosgate audio system with a subwoofer.
A Sun & Sound package is offered solely on the ES and includes the sunroof, touchscreen display, rearview camera and Rockford Fosgate audio system with satellite and HD radio. Optional on every Lancer trim is a Navigation System package that includes a 7-inch touchscreen. Accessory options include LED foglights and rear parking sensors.
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most helpful consumer reviews
5 out of 5 stars
Between the Corolla and the Camry...Perfect
ES 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl CVT)
This is our 3rd Lancer in the family and not the last. 26 mpg on mountain roads and the 2.0 ltr has power to spare as peepy as my wifes AWC 2.4 ltr Lancer. I don't like the new front bumper design but can live with that. Paint with Mitsubishi has always been an issue so you must stay on top of the waxing. If you step up and pay a little more from the 5spd stick you get lots of extras. I … really liked my wifes 2015 but I love my 2016. We will drive these for 10 yrs and then pass them to the grandkids. Keep the oil changed and the servicing up to date and these will go the distance not to mention they have timing chains not belts which have to changed out and thats not cheap. We paid $15500 which included destination (which is a bs charge but they won't waive it) plus tax and lic.
4 out of 5 stars
Great Car- Easily Overlooked
ES 4dr Sedan AWD (2.4L 4cyl CVT)
Lets be real about this review. This is a compact AWD car for around $20k. It is more of an entry level AWD car. But I think it is an all-around, excellent, fun to drive car. For what you pay and what you get it is an outstanding value. This car is easily overlooked in favor of other small foreign cars. So far no mechanical issues (63,000 miles and was purchased brand new). I have … a 2016 ES, AWD with the 2.4 CVT. I love the (lack of) technology in the car. It's simple and in some ways , "old school". Controls are laid out well and easy to use. Visibility is excellent!! I never have any issues checking my blind spots or backing the car. Engine: I have the optional 2.4 engine but this comes standard with the AWD system. Mine is crippled by the CVT transmission. This engine delivers very nice power (relatively speaking) especially at highway speeds. It was quite peppy and responsive when new but it seems to have quickly lost some of its punch. Off the line acceleration is not bad from 0-30 mph; but from 30-60mph, tends to drop off a bit. I can manage a 0-60 time of about 8 seconds. It was slightly quicker when new and may have dropped into the mid-7's from time to time. This is not a race car and you will not win any drag races with it. However, the engine is adequate for "normal" driving under most conditions. Fuel Economy: I personally find the fuel-economy to be very good. If you put things into perspective and consider the following; 2.4, CVT (automatic) with A/C and AWD. Then I think 30 MPG is outstanding!! If you can manage to drive around the speed limit on the highway I have even managed an occasional 32 MPG from time to time. I don't know why other reviews on this car suggest fuel-economy is sub-par. Transmission: I don't care for the CVT automatic ( but to be fair, it has not given me any issues yet). I think it holds the engine performance back too much and it never allows the engine to happily-rev to the red line, instead it allows for a leisurely stroll around the tach. Also, the engine tends to operate in the same range of about 1500-2500 rpm for almost every driving condition. I find myself forcing higher rpm from the engine, just to get it out of that operating range from time to time. So I find this to be pretty disappointing. For lack of better wording, I also find the engine trying to "lug" from time to time, especially if climbing a grade at highway speed. This is among the worst CVT transmissions I have ever used. It is far from smooth and VERY slow to respond to throttle changes. Mine does tend to "jerk" from time to time, and has no problems letting you know it's unrefined. For the AWD system: This car is AWD, ...NOT... 4wheel Drive. Yes, there is a difference! During my snow testing of the car I used the "4wheel Lock" feature and de-activated the traction control system. I feel this allowed the AWD system to have as much power as possible for the tests I performed with the car. Other settings are available and many of you may prefer to leave the traction control system on during snow driving conditions. I finally had the opportunity to drive the car in some snow conditions. (keep in mind that tires play a significant role in this area). My tires are 205-60-16 vehicle. I have replaced the original Yokohama tires with Continentials (and the Continential tires performed much worse than the OE-Yokohama's). Most of the snow I drove in was approx 4"-6" as we simply don't get the amount of snow we used to in my area. I found the car to spin quite a bit, in anything more than 4" especially when getting started from a stop (even more so on a grade)and even easing on the throttle. (but... I did deliberately stop on a snow covered grade a couple of times in an attempt to get the car stuck, but with some wheel spin and good use of the throttle I was on my way) I did have the opportunity to drive the car in some deeper snow (say between 6"-8") on a couple of secondary roads during the past winter. The car performed well but there is room for improvement. Again, I did notice a bit of wheel spin from the rear wheels under the worst conditions. This is more than I would like for an AWD car. It slips and spins, especially in deeper snow but it did NOT get stuck. It seems capable and got the job done. I'm not sure I would take this car off road, and the owners manual does not recommend it either. So better stick to roads on the map, just to be safe. Overall: I'm very pleased with the car. I purchased mine brand new and so far no serious problems. It fits my budget, seems reliable and meets my needs. I am heart-broken to find that Mitsubishi no longer offers the car in it's lineup. Update January 2020 - No significant changes. No significant problems; I stand by my previous reports on the car. Current mileage is approximately 75,000
5 out of 5 stars
I love my lancer!
ES 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)
This is the third Mitsubishi I have owned and it has been great, and the dealership I bought it from was also excellent. I got it for $14,000 brand new, have had no issues like all of my other mitsu's. Its disparaging see such poor reviews on vehicles like this that are clearly superior to thier american counterparts, like the dart, cruise or focus, that all blow up or the infotatinment … system needs to constantly be messed with, or push button start going out at 20,000 miles or trannies going out @ 50,000 miles. Enjoy your fords that will rust out in ten months [non-permissible content removed].
2 out of 5 stars
SEL 4dr Sedan AWD (2.4L 4cyl CVT)
I was excited to purchase the Lancer because it offered a sporty styling with AWC at a reasonable price. After owning a 2016 Lancer SEL for a little over a month I hate the car. Driver ergonomics are deplorable: - Leather seats that are uncomfortable (I feel like I've been sitting on a metal folding chair after a 20-30 minute drive. Lower back support and seating side support is almost … non-existent. - A dead pedal foot rest gives no room to stretch out my left leg. The only way to extend my left leg is to put my foot under the brake pedal - not a safe thing to do - or keep my leg bent in a very unnatural position. The alternative is to move the seat back which then leads to over extending to reach the steering wheel. - Move the seat forward, and the center console arm rest no longer exists. - Without a telescoping steering wheel, arms must be almost straight to reach the wheel. (Note: I am an average size, 5'9" male driver) - The clock is so tiny and so far away from the driver, it can barely be seen. Put on polarized sunglasses and the display screen for the clock, back-up camera, and entertainment system become almost impossible to see in daylight. - Move the tilt steering wheel down, and it covers a good part of the speedometer. - A tiny collection of icons between the tach and speedometer are busy and difficult to decipher at a quick glance. The fact that the outside temperature is part of this tiny display clutters the display and is not convenient for any passengers to view. - The self-dimming mirror is a joke. Street lights "trick" the sensors into thinking it's daylight and the result is blinding glare from the rear view mirror. - The sunvisors are extremely flimsy. They seem to be nothing more that plastic covered card board. And there is no extender on the flimsy visors for when the sun hits at just that annoying "over the shoulder" angle through the side window. - Significant lack of storage space and small cup holders are major inconveniences. - Leather seats and steering wheel are made of a rough texture leather - not supple or smooth. - At highway speeds, road noise is quite loud. - Headlights also seem dim compared to my previous two cars. Added to these horrible ergonomics, my car features a "thump" in the trunk when going over some bumps. The car was "delivered" with 17 miles on the odometer - dirty on the inside and outside, including pine sap blobs that ate through the clear coat. The dealer's fix was to have the finish "wet sanded". After 3 weeks I had a loud thumping in the driver's side rear quarter panel. Had to schedule an appointment with service department. The back-up sensor was banging around inside. They "fixed" it with double-sided tape. Only one "outlet" in the entire car; no usb port. Radio/entertainment center sounds very tinny and cheap. And the horn sounds like something that comes from a child's tricycle. I am SO sorry that I purchased this vehicle.
Features & Specs
NHTSA Overall Rating4 out of 5 stars
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
- Frontal Barrier Crash RatingOverall4 / 5Driver5 / 5Passenger4 / 5
- Side Crash RatingOverall4 / 5
- Side Barrier RatingOverall4 / 5Driver5 / 5Passenger3 / 5
- Combined Side Barrier & Pole RatingsFront Seat5 / 5Back Seat3 / 5
- RolloverRollover4 / 5Dynamic Test ResultNo TipRisk Of Rollover12.1%
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
- Side Impact TestGood
- Roof Strength TestGood
- Rear Crash Protection / Head RestraintGood
- IIHS Small Overlap Front TestNot Tested
- Moderate Overlap Front TestGood
More about the 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer
Used 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer Overview
The Used 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer is offered in the following submodels: Lancer Sedan. Available styles include ES 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl CVT), ES 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M), SE 4dr Sedan AWD (2.4L 4cyl CVT), ES 4dr Sedan AWD (2.4L 4cyl CVT), GT 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl CVT), GT 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 5M), and SEL 4dr Sedan AWD (2.4L 4cyl CVT). Pre-owned Mitsubishi Lancer models are available with a 2.0 L-liter gas engine or a 2.4 L-liter gas engine, with output up to 168 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer comes with front wheel drive, and all wheel drive. Available transmissions include: continuously variable-speed automatic, 5-speed manual. The Used 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer comes with a 5 yr./ 60000 mi. basic warranty, a 5 yr./ unlimited mi. roadside warranty, and a 10 yr./ 100000 mi. powertrain warranty.
What's a good price on a Used 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer?
Price comparisons for Used 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer trim styles:
- The Used 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer ES is priced between $14,590 and$16,998 with odometer readings between 50254 and98086 miles.
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Which used 2016 Mitsubishi Lancers are available in my area?
Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer for sale near. There are currently 4 used and CPO 2016 Lancers listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $14,590 and mileage as low as 50254 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer.
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Should I lease or buy a 2016 Mitsubishi Lancer?
Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.