Mitsubishi Eclipse was released 15 years ago. Since then, it has been the franchise model of Mitsubishi because of its sporty and "geo-mechanical" styling. The Mitsubishi Eclipse was built as a sporty coupe in line with Plymouth Laser and Eagle Talon during the early 90s. Several trims were offered during its first generation: base and ES which were offered in a 1.8L four cylinder engine rated at 92 hp, and the GS that housed a 2.0L twin-cam 4 cylinder engine that was rated at 135 hp and the GS Turbo and the all-wheel-drive GSX with 195 horsepower turbocharged 2.0L 4 cylinder. Though it surpassed the specifications of some sports coupe of its kind, the Mitsubishi Eclipse received poor attention thus generated low sales on its first years.
The follow up redesigning happened in 1995 as the Eclipse's second generation. Additional features from the present Eclipse were the dual airbags, a more contoured styling, a larger interior, and a new base engine. In 1996 the Spyder was introduced in GS and GS turbo. The GS coupe adopted the 2.0-liter engine 140 hp Chrysler engine. The GS Spyder used the 2.4-liter engine rated at 141 horsepower. A turbocharged Mitsubishi-built 2.0-liter, rated at 210 horsepower was used at the GS-T. Both Spyders included a power top with a glass rear window and electric defroster, plus power windows and door locks. The second generation lasted up to 1999 with several but minimal restyling.
The turn of the century came the third generation Mitsubishi Eclipse. This time the 2000 model hit big time as it generated enough sales to make it a top-selling series. This time, the V6 became available to the GT as the turbocharged engine and all-wheel-drive were dropped. The new Mitsubishi Eclipse was longer, taller, and certainly bigger that the previews Eclipses. Both RS and ST used the same 4 cylinder engine. The GS and the GT were offered automatic as an option. The front side airbags and antilock brakes were only available to the GT, part of a Premium Package option that also included leather upholstery. Standard features included alloy wheels, air conditioning, CD stereo, and power windows and locks. The RS had 15-inch wheels, the GS 16-inch, and the GT 17-inch tires.
The fourth generation Eclipse came with big changes in the 2006 model year. Aside from its new engine now at 3.8l V-6, same engine used by the Galant sedan, it has a 6-speed manual transmission or Sportronic automatic transmission, traction control, and 18" alloy wheels. The 3.8l MIVEC V6 produces 262hp at 5,750 rpm as a result of variable valve timing and lift. Torque can reach as high as 260 pound-feet at 4,500 rpm. It can zoom from 0-60 in 6.8 seconds. The new Eclipse is bolder, faster, and more beautiful.