The Mitsubishi Lancer is one of the few models that have improved with every generation, starting from its debut as an uninspired and boring sedan to the current-generation Lancer, with its shark nose fascia.
The Lancer is also now synonymous with solid handling and peppy engine options, and the 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer follows this tradition. It is sporty and attractive in its own right, but does have what it takes to beat the recently redesigned compact sedans crowding the market today?
New For 2013
The Lancer SE model, which was introduced just last year, gets an optional Premium Package that includes the following features:
- Power sunroof
- Satellite radio
- Rockford Fosgate premium stereo system
- Leather-wrapped steering wheel
All the above features make their debut in the Lancer this year, and all models also get standard alloy wheels.
One of the most prominent exterior design features of the 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer is its forward-leaning front grille. With the Ralliart version, the front fascia looks even more aggressive with the open grille and the addition of a subtle scoop on the hood.
All models come standard with 16-inch alloy wheels, and 18-inch wheels are available as an option. The GT and Ralliart versions get optional bi-Xenon high-intensity discharge headlights. A rear-wing spoiler is available as an optional exterior feature.
Interior & Cargo
The exterior of the 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer is chiseled and aggressive, but its interior is comparatively mellow and dampens the overall character of the car. The overall design of the cabin is generic and uninspiring, with a generous amount of cheap plastic used throughout the interior.
The GT and Ralliart versions of the 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer come with chrome accents and heated leather seats. However, even on the highest trim level, the down-market feeling penetrates the interior of the car.
Sitting on the driver’s seat, the lack of under-thigh support and an adjustable steering wheel can be a big disadvantage for tall drivers. The rear seats are comparatively better, with generous legroom and decent headroom. The seats themselves are quite comfortable and supportive, and can be folded down in a regular 60/40-split.
The foldable rear seats are a thoughtful addition too, considering that the 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer only offers 11.6 cubic feet of trunk space. With this small trunk, the rear seat is likely to be folded more often than the seats of other competing sedans.
The 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer comes with the automaker’s Fuse activation system, which works a lot like the Ford Sync system in that it helps select the destination for favorite music tracks. The Fuse lacks certain features and commands found in the Sync, but it works well for the most part.
The 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer comes with standard safety features like full-length side curtain airbags, front-seat side airbags, and driver knee airbags. Stability control and anti-lock brakes are other standard safety features.
Four-wheel disc brakes are standard for three of the car’s five trims (SE, GTS, and Ralliart). The other two come with rear drum brakes, but still manage to deliver impressive braking power.
The IIHS awarded the 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer its highest score of ""Good"" in terms of roof strength, side-impact safety, and frontal-offset impact safety.
The 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer is available in five trim levels: DE, ES, SE, GTS, and Ralliart. The DE and ES models are fitted with a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine that delivers 148 horsepower (hp) and is mated to a five-speed manual gearbox. The ES model gets an option continuously variable (CVT) automatic transmission.
The base engine and manual transmission configuration allows the Lancer to go from zero to 60 mph in around 8.8 seconds, which is a little slow for its class. With the CVT transmission fitted, the car reaches the 60 mph mark in 9.1 seconds, which is just about average for an automatic transmission sedan.
The GTS and SE comes with a 2.4-liter, four-cylinder engine that delivers 168 hp. The SE gets the CVT transmission as a standard while the GT gets the manual gearbox and the CVT as an option.
The top-end Ralliart version is the most powerful version, fitted with a turbocharged 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine that delivers 237 hp and 253 lb-ft of torque. This engine is mated to a six-speed automated manual transmission with twin-clutch system.
The 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer GT with manual transmission goes from zero to 60 mph in around 7.7 seconds, which is quite fast for its class. The Ralliart is even faster, reaching 60 mph in just 5.8 seconds. It derives this performance from its dual-clutch manual transmission and active center differential that send power to all four wheels.
This performance, of course, comes at the cost of fuel efficiency. In this comparison, the DE and ES prove to be the leaders with an average fuel economy of 23/29 mpg city/highway, which is decent for its class.
Key Competitors For The 2013 Mitsubishi Lancer
- Chevrolet Cruze
- Dodge Dart
- Ford Focus