Mitsubishi Colt Ralliart review

Is the Mitsubishi Colt Ralliart a junior Evo or just a tarted-up average supermini? Read our review to find out

"Looks the part, but how does it drive?"

The Colt Ralliart certainly looks like a baby Evo, particularly from the front with its jet fighter grille. But when I managed to get the Colt stuck in an inch of snow I was reminded that the Colt really isn’t an Evo, not even close.

But while the Ralliart isn’t a bonkers four-wheel drive super-saloon, this new hot Mitsubishi is certainly at home getting thrown down B-roads at some pace.

The 147hp 1.5-litre turbo engine likes to be kept spooled up, and thanks to a solid, direct gear change you can be as aggressive as you like without fumbling around trying to find the next gear - exactly what you want from a little hot hatch.

In five-door guise it has a tall boxy profile which would lead you to expect it to suffer from debilitating body roll. But thanks to re-worked suspension, the Colt feels tight and remarkably solid through the bends. When you do get close to the limit of grip you can feel exactly what the wheels are doing, and correct it accordingly – it reminds me of some of the classic early ’90s hot hatches.

Unfortunately, so does the interior. It feels robust and hardwearing, and everything is laid out in a logical manner, but it’s made of some nasty hard plastics with sharp edges on the dash and doors.

The Ralliart part-leather sports seats also give additional support without becoming uncomfortable over a long distance.

In the back the Colt has a surprising amount of legroom and could fit acouple of six-footers with ease, putting some larger hatchbacks toshame. The boot is slightly larger than on the outgoing model too.

The five-door Colt Ralliart starts at £12,549, which is a useful £546 less than the Ford Fiesta Zetec S. But while the Colt will have strong Mitsubishi reliability, and that grille makes it look a bit like an Evo, the Ralliart can’t match the Ford’s awesome all-round abilities.

Car Specs - Mitsubishi Colt Ralliart

Engine:1.5-litre turbo, 147hp
0-62mph:7.6 seconds
Top speed:131mph
Economy/emissions:41.5mpg/161g/km CO2
Price/On sale £12,549/Now

We rate:Budget hot hatch Decent gear shift Evo-inspired looks

We slate :Hard plastic interior Titchy boot The Fiesta's better

Rating: Image removed.

by Craig McAlpine

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