10 Best & Worst Mitsubishi Mirage Years

The Mirage is a timeless, classic hatchback that Mitsubishi has manufactured since 1978. The long warranty and affordable pricing make the Mitsubishi Mirage an excellent buy, although it isn’t much of a fan favorite among critics.

It’s hard to tell which Mirage model is better and which is worse because there are so many. Continue reading to discover which years of the Mitsubishi Mirage are the most reliable and which ones you should avoid.

The worst years to avoid the Mitsubishi Mirage are 2000, 2002, 2014, and 2015. The best years to buy a Mitsubishi Mirage are from 2018-2023. This result was concluded from trustworthy sources such as NHTSA, Edmunds, Car Complaints, J.D. Power, and Kelley Blue Book.

Worst Mitsubishi Mirage Years to Avoid

Although the Mitsubishi Mirage is an easy-to-understand car, a few problems have surfaced. To help you confidently navigate the used car lot, we have created a list of the worst options for this vehicle.

This is a list of Mitsubishi model years that you should stay away from:

  • 2000 Mitsubishi Mirage
  • 2002 Mitsubishi Mirage
  • 2014 Mitsubishi Mirage
  • 2015 Mitsubishi Mirage

4. Worst Year: 2002 Mitsubishi Mirage (3.04 Rating)

Source: Wikipedia

The 2002 Mitsubishi Mirage is a relatively good car, but due to its widespread issues and age, it is included in the worst category list. The most common problem with this model is the engine and engine cooling system.

While traveling at highway speeds on snowy roads, one driver experienced a loss of power steering due to a cracked crankshaft bolt that broke off. Aside from the timing belt and harmonic balancer, the incident damaged the crankshaft sensor as well.

The other issues that the customer mentioned include defective airbags, faulty powertrain, brakes, and tire issues.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

3. Worst Year: 2015 Mitsubishi Mirage (2.90 Rating)

Source: Carscoops

The 2015 model continued the same reliability problems as the 2014 model. The service brakes have been the source of numerous driver complaints, with misplaced calipers being a common issue. Some drivers said the brakes wouldn’t engage at all or only partially.

Once again, the airbag system was the subject of numerous major complaints, this time involving airbag deployment issues. Moreover, compared to the more conventional manual 5-gear transmission, drivers seemed to have a little more trouble with the CVT system.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

2. Worst Year: 2014 Mitsubishi Mirage (2.60 Rating)

Source: clublexus

After a shaky 2012 recontinuation, The Mirage came with numerous defective years, and 2014 is one of them.  According to the NHTSA, drivers most often report issues with the airbag system, electrical system, and a variety of engine problems.

The airbag indicator gave false readings on occasion, which was both frustrating and risky. Even in those incidents where the airbags did not deploy, a number of drivers sustained just minor injuries. Concerning the engine, drivers have noted a variety of unsettling sounds.

On alternative occasions, it was found that the coolant was leaking, which might have caused the engine to overheat and caused more serious mechanical issues.

We suggest getting a different model year of the Mirage if you’re looking for the greatest deal, since its cheap ownership expenses and consistent reliability are major selling points.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

1. Worst Year: 2000 Mitsubishi Mirage (2.49 Rating)

Source: Tradebit

The 2000 model is the worst of all Mirage models. In the year 2000, the most common complaint was about damaged door hinges, which often happened after 60,000 miles or less. Doors became more difficult to open and close, and in extreme cases, owners reported that their doors became completely jammed.

After that, issues with the electrical system started popping up, and drivers frequently experienced a loss of power to their dashboard displays and other functions. Also, there were widespread problems with the braking system; several drivers blamed long braking distances for their accidents.

There were five recalls for this model as well, with the majority involving aftermarket light bulbs that did not meet expectations. A possible faulty crankshaft pulley and airbag labeling systems were the subject of other recalls.

We advise sticking with a year other than 2000 because other models offer the Mirage’s benefits without the larger mechanical risks.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

Most Reliable Years of the Used Mitsubishi Mirage

Although auto enthusiasts don’t like it much, it is a budget-friendly practical choice due to its simplicity. If you’re looking for a new, affordable car, we hope this short list of our favorites will be helpful.

In terms of quality, these are the most notable years of the Mitsubishi Mirage:

  • 2018 Mitsubishi Mirage
  • 2019 Mitsubishi Mirage
  • 2020 Mitsubishi Mirage
  • 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage
  • 2022 Mitsubishi Mirage
  • 2023 Mitsubishi Mirage

6. Best Year: 2018 Mitsubishi Mirage (3.25 Rating)

Source: Car and Drive

While there was a little increase in mechanical issues during the first few years following the 2012 relaunch, Mitsubishi had improved matters by 2018. It is easy to understand why customers are happy with the product’s basic design and high level of dependability.

Plus, it has all the features of more recent model years. Modern Mirages keep their affordable prices while packing a ton of useful features like automatic climate control, keyless entry, a rearview camera, a touchscreen, Bluetooth, and USB input.

Overall, 2018 was a fantastic model year for the Mirage because the gas mileage and safety record lived up to expectations.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

5. Best Year: 2019 Mitsubishi Mirage (3.61 Rating)

Source: Autobytel

Two customer complaints and zero recalls have been recorded for the Mirage so far in 2019. Even though the car is still relatively new, the first four years of ownership were quite spectacular.

Impressively, for a car of its size and weight, it has received four out of five stars on the NHTSA safety scale and the highest possible rating of “Good” from the IIHS.

The Mirage’s 4.5-star rating on Edmunds shows that consumers are still on its side. The fuel efficiency is a common point of appreciation, and drivers often report even better results than expected, averaging about 48 MPG.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

4. Best Year: 2022 Mitsubishi Mirage (3.63 Rating)

Source: Car and drive

The 2022 Mitsubishi Mirage is best for buying a used car instead of a new one. The most notable feature of this car is the highly efficient fuel economy; a hatchback with a continuously variable transmission can achieve 39 mpg in a combined city/highway test.

In addition to a powertrain warranty that will last you ten years and 100,000 miles—a guarantee you won’t find on any used car—the Mirage has standard features like smartphone connection with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as front collision warning with automated braking.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

3. Best Year: 2020 Mitsubishi Mirage (3.65 Rating)

Source: Carbuyer

The 2020 Mitsubishi Mirage was designed to cater to the budget-conscious car buyer. This tiny hatchback has one of the lowest starting prices of any new automobile, at less than $16,000, and this price can even reduced by buying a used one.

Some benefits, such a cheap price, good fuel economy, and simple maneuverability in confined areas, are undeniably achieved by 2020 Mitsubishi’s stripped-down approach. To top it all off, Mitsubishi provides a long powertrain and bumper-to-bumper warranties for extra peace of mind.

All trim levels now come standard with automatic climate control. According to Mitsubishi, this feature is exclusive to the Mirage and no other vehicle in its class.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

2. Best Year: 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage (3.65 Rating)

Source: Car and Drive

At 39 mpg combined, the Mirage is among the most fuel-efficient non-hybrids on the market. Among brand-new vehicles, it also ranks among the most affordable, and it is easily maneuverable. 

Looking at its competitors is still a good idea if your budget allows it, but if money is your main concern, the Mitsubishi is the best option. Not only that, but the Mirage has a surprisingly spacious cargo area and excellent fuel economy.

In 2021, Mitsubishi gave the Mirage hatchback a minor facelift that includes a bigger grille, revised bumpers up front and back, and updated headlight and taillight designs.

This year’s lineup also includes a Carbonite Edition model that gets a more aggressive body package. Along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Mitsubishi has included automatic emergency braking with pedestrian recognition as standard equipment.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

1. Best Year: 2023 Mitsubishi Mirage (3.68 Rating)

Source: hutchinsonmitsubishi

Not many automobiles are available with a manufacturer’s warranty of at least ten years and an MSRP of less than $20,000. The 2023 subcompact Mirage, a vehicle from Mitsubishi, is available for as little as $18,000, which is great news for budget-conscious shoppers.

The small Japanese hatchback has great fuel economy, more cargo space than you may imagine, and a long warranty, among other benefits. According to the EPA, you can get 36 MPG in the city and 43 MPG on the highway.

The elimination of the five-speed manual transmission is the most striking modification to the Mirage for the 2023 model year. Every single Mirage now comes equipped with a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT).

Not only does it look great compared to other budget cars, but other drivers also think it’s adorable because of how tiny and unique it is.

Reviews, Ratings, Recalls & Complaints:

Common Mitsubishi Mirage Problems

Just like other cars, the Mitsubishi Mirage also has problems in the majority of its models. Common Mitsubishi Mirage problems include:

  • Airbags failure
  • Premature brake wear
  • Bad door hinges
  • Problems with front brake wear
  • Problems shifting in the manual transmission


Is the Mitsubishi Mirage a good car to own?

The Mitsubishi Mirage is an excellent performer. The Mirage ranks 7th out of 21 subcompact cars with a score of 4.5/5.0, as reported by repairpal.com. It’s a major player in the car industry nowadays. Only consider purchases made in the most reliable years for the greatest outcomes.

How long does the Mitsubishi Mirage last?

The typical lifespan of a Mitsubishi Mirage is over 100,000 miles (160934.4 km), and it may easily reach 200,000 miles (321868.8 km) or more with the right kind of care and routine maintenance. You can extend the time your automobile spends in your driveway and on the road by taking good care of it.

Is the Mitsubishi Mirage expensive to maintain?

The annual maintenance cost of a Mitsubishi Mirage is $457, as reported on repairpal.com. That figure aligns with the average of $456 for all subcompact cars. The likelihood of unexpected repairs, whether minor or severe, for the Mirage is approximately average.


If you’re looking for a basic small car, the Mitsubishi Mirage is a good pick. For maximum efficiency, we advise going with the latest years of Mitsubishi Mirage. Choosing the perfect year for your Mitsubishi Mirage can be challenging with so many options, but with our knowledge, you should have no trouble making a final decision.

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