2015 Mitsubishi Mirage is the most fuel efficient non hybrid sold in America

2014 Mitsubishi Mirage hypermiling event

2015 Mitsubishi Mirage

Say what you will about Mitsubishi's subcompact, but you can't say it isn't fuel efficient.

Yesterday, Mitsubishi announced that the 2015 Mirage had achieved an EPA fuel mileage rating of up to 37 mpg city/44 mpg highway, making it the most fuel efficient non-hybrid gasoline vehicle available in America today, posting a combined fuel economy of 40 mpg (in CVT-equipped models).

Lest you think these figures might be overblown, consider this: back in March Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc. (MMNA) held a Las Vegas-to-Cypress (MMNA headquarters in California) hypermiling driving event among members of the press with the winning driver, Aaron Gold, averaging 74.1 mpg in a "strategically taped-up" Mirage.

2015 Mitsubishi Mirage

In addition to feathering the gas pedal, you can also chalk up the results to a curb weight that ranges from 1,973 pounds for a manually-equipped base model to just 2,051 pounds for the upper trim level equipped with a CVT automatic.

Both transmissions are mated to the only engine available: a 1.2-liter 3-cylinder DOHC engine with variable valve-timing that produces 74 hp at 6000 rpm and 74 lb.-ft. of torque at 4000 rpm while tipping the scales at less than 170 lbs. It also features a lightweight hollow camshaft and pistons, resin-coated low friction bearings, low-friction piston rings and an output optimized engine oil pump that circulates lower viscosity engine oil (0W-20 grade).

2015 Mitsubishi Mirage

But while the Mirage's fuel economy figures may be high, its cost of entry is certainly reasonable. The base DE trim level starts at $13,805 (including $810 in destination charges) and includes such amenities as automatic climate control, power windows and mirrors, keyless entry, interior piano black trim and a 140-watt sound system with USB input.

Stepping up to the ES ($15,105 incl. destination) adds a proximity key with push-button start, 14-inch alloy wheels, fog lights, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob plus Bluetooth phone connectivity.

2015 Mitsubishi Mirage

New for 2015

Although the new Mirage was introduced in 2014, Mitsubishi decided to add a number of upgrades for the latest model including:

• New chrome interior trim accents for the audio and HVAC panels (all models)
• New rear-mounted short pole antenna (all models)
• New interior seat fabric (ES model)
• New side view mirrors with turn indicators (ES model)

Available colors for 2015 include Sapphire Blue, Kiwi Green, Infra Red, Plasma Purple, Cloud White, Mystic Black, Starlight Silver and Thunder Gray.

2015 Mitsubishi Mirage

New Car Warranty

As one of the smaller niche players in the U.S. market, Mitsubishi is also enticing buyers to its cause with one of the more attractive warranties in the business. As such, the 2015 Mirage comes with a 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain limited warranty; 5-year/60,000-mile new vehicle limited warranty; 7-year/100,000 mile anti-corrosion/perforation limited warranty; and 5-year/unlimited mileage roadside assistance program.

The 2015 Mitsubishi Mirage is currently available at Mitsubishi dealers nationwide. Destination/handling charges for dealers in Hawaii and Alaska is an additional $125.

2015 Mitsubishi Mirage

images courtesy of Mitsubishi Motors North America