Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Plans for The Rage (aka our 2017 Mitsubishi Mirage)

We've now had our 2017 Mitsubishi Mirage about six months, and frankly we dig it. It's simple, economical, the prefect size, and different. But we have plans to turn the Mirage into a ragin' subcompact. It won't stay stock.

We've run The Rage for about six months nearly bone-stock, sans the aftermarket shift knob, but we've procured some parts. This includes 195/50/15 Yokohama S.Drive tires; 15x6.5 MB Revolt wheels; and a set of genuine paint-matched Mitsubishi side sill extensions (e.g. side skirts). But none of that stuff has gone on yet, and frankly, they've been cluttering up our living room. Part of the reason for waiting to install these bits is because, well, it's winter. However, there have also been some Mirages with rear axle alignment issues which can wear tires quickly and unevenly. So before bolting on any aftermarket goodies, I wanted to make sure our car was in spec.

MB Revolt Wheels

Yesterday, I took the car to my local dealer, had them check the alignment and the rear axle (along with front wheels for that matter). All are within spec. This means we've got a green light to start working on The Rage. 


Not surprisingly, the Mirage isn't a super popular platform for modifications in North America, so I've done a fair bit of research to find parts. I've been scouring various sites for parts: From eBay to Jegs; Amazon to Thai and Indonesian forum sites; to Facebook groups—I've been checking out all sorts of stuff. By the way, in Indonesia as well as Thailand (where the car is manufactured), the Mirage (also known as the Space Star) is a popular car to customize, so those forums and Facebook groups provide good information and inspiration for our build. Finally, there's the ubiquitous Instagram and all the #mitsubishimirage tags. 

I don't plan on extensively modifying the Mirage (famous last words?). With only 78 hp, it's hardly worth putting much money into attempting to make it go faster. Sure, maybe we'll do an exhaust system (if we can find one) so it sounds good, and I did see that K&N makes a drop-in filter, so we might add that. As with most slow cars, we intend on focusing our attention on suspension. Eibach, H&R, King, Tein, and others make drop springs, good for about a one-inch (30mm) drop and a firmer ride. There are full coilover options from BC Racing, Tein, and Godspeed, too. However, having gone the coilover route with our Yaris, I think we might just start out with a mild drop on our stickier Yokohamas. Oh, and a rear sway bar. It'll definitely need a rear sway bar. 

One thing is for certain: We're looking forward to making our Mirage handle better and stand out. It might only be 78 horsepower, but that doesn't mean we can't increase the fun factor. And with a few mods, the Mirage can actually look pretty rad. Stay tuned. 

Modified Mitsubishi Mirage
One of my favorite Mirages from @non_stance.

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