Mirage ES w/ CVT automatic, and Navigation. Excellent car, 62975 miles to date. Fuel economy- I average 44 to 52 MPG summer, 38 to 44 winter, mixed city / highway driving. In summer I've gotten over 60 MPG on longer trips at a steady 55 MPH, 72 MPG at steady 45 NPH. When new, MPG improves gradually as the car gets more miles on it, until 40K then stays the about the same. Ride, handling, and braking also improve gradually with use; German cars I've owned were like that. Great in snow, even without switching to winter tires. 6" is deepest snow driven in so far. On glare ice the electronic traction controls are impressive. Maintenance / Repairs - in 3 years I've had to replace one headlight bulb ($9.00). Though not necessary, I also changed fluid in the CVT transmission, installed iridium tip spark plugs, and added a K&N air filter element (clean/re-use type). In sub-zero degree weather the car cranked slowly so the 3rd year in fall I replaced the battery with a more powerful one (500 CCA). Replaced front brake rotors and pads at 62K miles, did myself, quick and easy, parts were $145.00 from NAPA Auto Parts. Other than that, just wash, wax, vacuum the interior, rotate & balance tires, change oil & filter every 10K miles. Seats are very comfy even on long trips (e.g Madison WI, to St. Loius, MO and back, in one day) though at 50K miles I noticed padding on drivers seat cushion is less supportive than it had been. In general the interior is comfortable, and well laid out, Controls are sensibly located, intuitive, and I'm 5' 10" and 160 lb. yet it is easy for me to enter / exit the car, has plenty of headroom, shoulder room, and legroom. Seat base is height adjustable, very helpful. Great for parallel parking - small, short turning radius, and it has a backup camera. The tires show moderate wear at 63K miles and seem to have better traction than when new. I highly recommend this car, new or used, and you can get a nice used one at a great price if you shop online. That is because resale value isn't great, which may change as word gets around that these are great little cars, but until that that happens I'd say don't buy a new one if you don't plan to keep it for at least 5 years.
I was attracted to this car because of the low purchase price and low fuel costs - I get up to 48 MPG ! I think it is adorable and fun to drive. It is liberating to not feel the money flying out of your pockets every time you go somewhere. I previously drove a Jeep and got about 15 MPG. It is full of standard features and does not feel like a cheap car at all. My Jeep was a 2005 loaded limited edition - and I do not feel deprived at all making the change. Great bargain, reliable, and feels like you spent more than you did. Great size to sneak into small parking spaces.
Seems like car reviewers focus on how horrible the car is. Depends on what you are looking for. I hate the big bloated heavy cars everyone seems to love. I wanted a warranty, cheap to buy and cheap to drive. Car scores huge on all points there. It also has nice features for the price. I reccomend the ES manual with no extra options. CVT is for the lazy, and it adds a lot to the price of the car. It has a growly engine sound (I find this a positive not a negative). Handling can be improved greatly by adding a $200 rear sway bar. Styling is so so. Interior is hard plastic but seems like there is very little to break. It is designed to be practical and durable. No defects so far
I've now had this car over a year and Ive really tested what it could truly do .. We were hit in it hard shortly after purchase myself and my two occupants were just fine .. My insurance covered repairs but it was just superficial no frame damage .. I took lots of road trips through faLl .. Went camping .. Which we had a massive rain storm roads were flooded trees down .. That little car drove right over branches and through deep puddles zero issues. My mom is disabled having several spinal fusions she can't turn her head and her arms, neck and shoulders are in constant pain she LOVES my little Purpink (that's what I call her) we raised the seat up so its easier for her to get in and out it definitely doesn't feel like a tiny car you don't feel like you're sitting on the road and when the seat is raised it sits like an SUV. The steering wheel initially feels loose it takes small inputs to move it .. Once you get used to it every other car feels like so much effort to drive .. And I nearly take out curbs etc in other vehicles as I'm uSed to the tight turns Purpink can make with minimal effort .. My mom drives my car with ease .. She's even taken several 12+ hr road trips with me which she never thought she'd be able to do but Purpink is so comfortable and easy to drive. I'm 5'9" and a large person my family/ friends etc are also 5'9" or taller and no one is skinny everyone fits great .. We don't even have to touch in the front seat .. My friends who have ridden in back say it's not bad .. I drove from wi to NY and back over the winter we spent more on tolls .. than gas .. On the way home we hit a 6 hr snow storm throug Ohio cars were spinning off the road .. We were totally fine .. Kept my speed down and she drove as well as my AWD suv. This summer my friend and I spent 10 days exloring colorado .. All our camping gear, tents, cooler, etc us two large suitcases fit just fine without blocking any windows. We spent the majority of time on gravel roads and remote camping we drove up and down a nearly straight up and down rut covered dirt hill to get to our campsite on the river even pick up trucks had an issue making it .. We just went.. Up and down it repeatedly zero Issues .. People kept staring at her all amazed that she could even make it there and she did it with ease .. I LOvE this car .. Even my guys friends and brother love my tiny purpink car. Only thing is change is a center console/ arm rest for comfort and much needed storage for small things .. Plenty of cup holders tho
I have now put another 5,000 miles on my Mirage (see earlier review) and still enjoying it but discovering some new flaws. For a car with a sticker price of $18,000 I feel it is lacking many basics including an armrest, sliding sunvisors with mirrors, and lighted door controls (windows, locks, and side mirror controls on dash). I don't like fumbling around at night trying to find the buttons.Gas mileage in town is not impressive and on the highway I average about 37 (driving 70+). Now if I drive like a grandpa I have actually hit 51 mpg's before, but that is very rare.Other cars with bigger engines and more horsepower get about the same mileage. The dash has started vibrating/rattling too.