By on January 25, 2010

You try finding an intact gen1 Eclipse; it took me months. And forget about it being a Turbo; they’ve all been riced, diced, sliced and mashed into oblivion. Was there ever more of a young guy car than this?  I’ll go out on a limb and say that the turbo AWD version of this and its Plymouth Laser and Eagle Talon DSM clones were the closest thing there was to a four-wheeler crotch rocket in their day. It may be a bit on the young side for Curbside Classics, but I figured I’d better grab this Eclipse now, because it may well be the last in town, and its driver is a young guy. High testosterone levels lead to drives of several types, but not generally the one that pertains to preservation. The Eclipse is the victim of its intended demographic.

The fruit of the then fertile Diamond Star Motors (DSM) joint venture with Chrysler, the Eclipse and its Laser and Eagle buddies hit the scene in 1990, at the height of the market for small sporty coupes, and made quite a splash. The Turbo Eclipse made C/D’s Ten Best Cars list the first year out, and stayed on it every year through 1992. Based loosely on the Galant, the Eclipse trio benefited from Mitsubishi’s competition cars going well back into the seventies and the more definitive Lancer VR-4  of 1987 that led to the Evo series. The DSM trio didn’t get the unadulterated Evo engine tune (247 hp), but the 180-195 horses it did have was a good start, although I suspect very few of them ended up with those numbers.  How many Eclipses gave their life to the experiment of “lets see what happens when we raise the boost…now some more…and a just a little bit more… Oh, so that’s what happens!”

But it was a fun experiment while it lasted. And that includes for its maker too. The DSM trio were a popular seller, but its been a long slide downhill, especially after the end of the similar-sized gen2 version in 1999. The combination of growth, bloat and indifference makes it a very reasonable question to ask: Do they even make the Eclipse anymore? I assume so, but can’t be bothered to check to make sure. The Eclipse has been permanently eclipsed by Subaru WRX/STIs and of course the Lancer Evo, although their numbers are probably a small fraction of what the Eclipse and friends sold in their heyday.

I keep running across solid old (non-Eclipse) Mitsubishi cars, and the stats from the German reliability post we did recently remind me what a vibrant company it once was, and how well built their cars were. I don’t blame the lack of Eclipses, Talons and Lasers on the streets to Mitsubishi; we’ve covered that already here. Or were their US DSM-made cars not as good as the real Nipponese thing? If anyone would have told me as recently as when this car was made that Mitsu would be hanging by a thread now, I wouldn’t have believed it. But perhaps chasing the turbosterone demographic wasn’t such a hot idea after all.

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51 Comments on “Curbside Classic: 1992 Mitsubishi Eclipse...”


  • avatar
    ktm

    Paul, you were in California and did not see an Eclipse? They are like roaches down here, especially in Southern California.

    Yes, Mistubishi still makes the Eclipse but with a V-6 now. It’s been relegated to a secretaries car.

    • 0 avatar
      Paul Niedermeyer

      I see gen2 (’95 and up) ones up here, but not gen1. I wasn’t really keeping an eye out for them in the Bay Area. I was kidding about the current Eclipse, but thanks for the confirmation.

      • 0 avatar
        AxelF

        I know this is two years old, but just wanted to say I got a 1992 Mitsubishi Eclipse GS, white, stick, manual windows in April or so of 1993 from a couple who got married and she didn’t need it anymore. 9,000 miles in perfect condition. Had that car for 10 years with no issues other than going through tires like crazy and brakes. :) Got married, moved to a town with high insurance rates and left it in Mom’s driveway back home to, well, basically die a slow death. :( Tried to drive it once in a while to keep it alive. Even gave it CPR one day (bouncing the hood up and down) and it started! Got about a mile before it died. Eventually gave it to Lung Cancer folks as a donation. God I miss that car. Even dream about it from time to time. Went online to see if I could buy one again (new model) and found out they don’t make it anymore. Waah waah waaah Oh yeah, my Eclipse, other than it dying a slow deatch from sitting still, was pristine in 2004 when I gave her up. I mean, paint looked brand new other than some tar around the wheels. That car saved my butt more times than I can count with its nimbleness, never touched a thing with it. So long dear car…so long…

  • avatar
    krazykarguy

    Even this “captured” Eclipse is not the original one with the pop-up headlamps. That would be the find of finds.

    Unfortunately, this CC is spot on. If it had a turbo, it was overboosted at some point of its life, and probably blown up shortly thereafter… My brother had a ’92 Eagle Talon DL (the basest of base models), and that car leaked from every seal on the engine. It was a continual sludgy mess under the hood.

    I had lusted after the ’99 Eclipse GS-T, by that time it was turning out 210-215 hp (at the crank) to just the front wheels. It was widely known that the AWD system added at least half a second to the 0-60 time, and that was unacceptable to a 20 year old.

    I never got one, and don’t regret it.

  • avatar
    carve

    I’ve heard this is also one of the least-safe cars of the past 20 years.

    In high school, I drove a friends. It was a base model with 5-speed. I think the thing made 80 or 90 hp- very slow. They were damn sexy cars though- especially the 2nd gens.

  • avatar
    mtypex

    There are plenty of DSMs hiding around in Michigan.

  • avatar
    Kendahl

    I gave some thought to one of theses (actually the Eagle Talon) before buying an RX-7 with the 13B engine. On the good side, a turbocharged Eclipse/Talon was quite a bit faster than the RX-7. On the bad side, it was a turbo with the associated problems of lag and unreliability and it was a Mitsubishi which I believe is a synonym for unreliable. What really killed it for me was the motorized shoulder belt. Put the car in reverse, open the door and lean out to see to back up. The belt would run forward and try to rip your head off.

    Since the RX-7 lasted me 23 years and 190k miles and was still running strong when I gave it away, I suspect I made the right decision.

  • avatar
    Mark MacInnis

    Actually, in my neck of the woods, these are considered Chick Cars, big time. No self-respecting male would be caught dead in one, less’n it was his very hot GF’s car….

  • avatar
    detlump

    I used to work at a Mitsu dealer in SE Mich when these were new. I was doing dealer prep, moving cars around, even throwing in a few gallons of gas so a buyer could get off the lot! Those were the days. I liked the pop up headlights of the previous version, though they were problematic. They were fun cars to be sure. Even a base model with the 5 speed was a fun little car. I also like the first gen 3000 GTs, especially the non-turbo versions. Of course the VR-4s were a blast to drive, even with the shipping spacers in the springs. The Galant VR-4 was a sleeper too.

    I recall a great Eclipse story from the serv. dept. Guy came in with one, it was right at the timing belt change limit. Service wanted to do it then, he said he needed the car, would bring it back soon. Next morning, belt broke, $2K in repairs. Sounded true to me. I always change my timing belts ahead of schedule. Good post.

    • 0 avatar
      golden2husky

      Some of these cars were recalled for bad timing belts. My friend had a Eclipse GSX, all wheel drive turbo, 5 speed. He received a recall notice for timing belt failure. He made his service appointment but had to cancel and rescheduled for two weeks later. During that two weeks, the belt snapped and trashed the head. Mitsubishi still picked up the tab for the repair. For it’s day, this was a hot ride/ Screw the “chick car” crap. A Honda delsol this was not.

  • avatar
    Stingray

    Eclipse is more related to Galant than Lancer AFAIK. Galant VR-4 came before the EVOs, also, AFAIK. Whatever.

    They’re a rare sight here too. They were common in 1992-93 when the import cars mada a boom here. Still, I see one of them ocasionally.

    You’re getting closer to the cars I like: Isuzu Impulse. Well, you already posted an Isuzu Stylus pic.

    Hint, in Eugene, there is 1 JI (2nd and last gen). And somewhere in Oregon one JR (1st gen). Know it from the forumZ. I guess one of them have already been shot by you.

    You can make the JI Impulse with its twin, the Geo Storm.

    • 0 avatar
      B.C.

      IIRC the switch to the Galant platform didn’t happen until the 3rd gen model, which led to the bloated monstrosity on sale today.

    • 0 avatar
      Stingray

      Even Wiki (I know it’s a weak source) seems to agree.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mitsubishi_Eclipse

      Eclipse related to Galant.

    • 0 avatar
      Paul Niedermeyer

      Wiki is always right no? We’ll give them the benefit of the doubt and change it.

    • 0 avatar
      Stingray

      Using that was FAIL. But in al honesty, I remember reading that looooooong time ago in one of my Popular Mechanics magazine, and it said they were based on the Galant.

      Anyway, it’s a cool car. The shifter knob is very nice.

    • 0 avatar
      starbird80

      The shifter knob is very nice.

      I loved the whole cockpit-style layout. Followed the development of this car, as best as one could in the pre-Internet days, from sketches, to show car, to production. The interior was nearly unchanged from the show car.

      When the first year’s AWD turbo Eclipse/Talons got to be about five years old, used ones were finally in my price range. Found a nice example on a local used car lot. But the test drive killed it for me. The shifter, at least in this car, was horribly notchy. And the salesman’s suggestion that I “take it easy on the stick” didn’t endear him to me…what, seriously, you *can’t* shift from first to second in one motion?

      So died my love affair with this car. Just as well for my insurance payments.

    • 0 avatar
      slim69

      Sorry this is late: I just found TTAC recently – loving it though!

      I used to work for Mitsu Motors HQ (in Japan), so I know that Eclipse was always based on the Galant (shared platform, that’s why they and Endeavor are all built at the Illinois plant).  If you think back, the Galant used to be a lot smaller too. Growth of the Galant led to growth of the Eclipse.  Check out the Mitsu product “museum” (http://www.mitsubishi-motors.com/corporate/museum/e/index.html).  A lot of Engrish, but shows every car they made since the ’60s (and even their first from 1917).

      Mitsu has had some (OK, many) problems, but has also made many good cars (old Galant, EVO, Pajero, Delica, GTO, old Eclipse).  Their managers and marketers have failed the excellent engineers, IMHO.  As part of the giant Mitsubishi “family”, they thought they could compete with Toyota, but the auto company didn’t have enough resources, so they were really stretched thin.  You can only pull so many rabbits out of a hat….  Being small, they should have found an identity and stuck to it, like Subaru did, instead of trying to do everything. 

  • avatar
    Dave Skinner

    “The Eclipse is the victim of its intended demographic.”

    Paul-

    I fully agree this, all models fall victim to this demographic.

    For years I’ve stated that the buyers of this market segment (inexpensive, small, FWD coupes) neglect maintenance more than any other type of vehicle buyer. They buy the latest style, drive it without basic maintenance until the warranty expires, and move on to the next car of the moment. While in their possession, these vehicles depreciate like crazy, and end up resold to lesser monied versions of the same buyer type. I would also say these buyers also tend to neglect exterior maintenance, and ignore parking lot dings and dents. Why worry about appearance, since they plan replace the car soon?

    The list of little coupes that sold well for a couple of years, and then dropped off into oblivion goes on and on:

    Mercury Capri (the euro import, 1971-77)
    Chevy Monza/Pontiac Sunbird
    Volkswagen Scirroco (Not a big seller, but try and find one today…)
    Isuzu Impulse (ditto)
    Dodge Daytona
    Chevy Beretta
    Geo Storm
    Ford Probe
    Saturn Coupe
    Mazda MX-3

    In almost every case, these nameplates out of the lineup after two or three generations. Victims of the latest greatest mentality embraced by their owners.

    I’d be curious to hear if Steven Lang agrees with my thoughts. When he is at an auction. I’ll bet he avoids this class of vehicle like the plauge.

  • avatar
    Ernie

    I had a roommate in college that had one of these, same color.

    It got cut in half by *think* um something large.

    I didn’t know until now that the Eagle that one of my co-workers tells me of youthful stories of wracking up tickets with is it’s cousin!

  • avatar
    areaman

    Seeing these up here in Canada (before Mistu entered our market) was a big deal. The following Spyders were popular grey imports with the 18-22 gold-chain-outside-the-shirt set.

  • avatar
    BlueEr03

    My first car was a ’94 base Eclipse, that with all of 92 hp. Still, it was a fun car to drive, even if it did have some trouble maintaining speed going up those mountains.

  • avatar
    Sammy B

    My dad purchased a 1990 Eclipse GSX in November 1989. First year for the AWD Turbo. We still have it and it’s bone stock w/ about 89K on it. One of the survivors I think!!

    Part of me wishes he had waited and picked up a Galant VR-4 (they only made a Galant GSX at the time), just for the additional sleeper factor, but I’m happy with the purchase.

  • avatar
    ttacgreg

    A 1990 Laser turbo sits in my garage, where it has spent its downtimes (that would be winters). It is 500 miles from the 100,000 mile mark, is in excellent condition. Bought it new for $14,500 in 1990. Fun car, except I swear pick up trucks/SUV’s (the majority vehilcle type here in the Rockies)are less considerate, even aggressive towards me than when I drive my Suzuki 4 door Vitara.

    BTW TTAC. . . there is a faded pumkin orange 70′s MustangII I see every time I visit Denver. I think of curbside classes every time I see it.

    • 0 avatar
      Paul Niedermeyer

      I’ve got two great Mustang IIs in the can; must let one of them out real soon!

    • 0 avatar
      rudiger

      Indeed, for all the scorn and derision heaped on those rebodied Pintos, people forget they sold in droves when new. Iacocca’s marketing savvy came through once again, making them the right car for the times and well worth a CC.

      What’s fascinating is to think that the last of the largest Mustangs was built in 1973 (a car with an engine bay designed to accomodate a big-block V8), then followed the very next year with the much smaller, slower Mustang II, but both still had the same market demographic.

  • avatar
    Wheely

    My wife had a 1st gen Eclipse GS, bought new in ’89/’90, non-Turbo version, front wheel drive. Had the pop-up headlights and those same automatic seatbelts. It also had a 5-speed with an incredibly light clutch, matching the light and kind of detached steering. Not exactly a driver’s car in that configuration: I thought of it as a secretary’s car back then. On the other hand, it got pretty good gas mileage I think, and was quite reliable… until it developed various engine leaks at 80K miles, allegedly due to a warped engine block. Could just be bad luck – she certainly didn’t drive it hard.

    She replaced with an Infinity J30, which would make an interesting subject for a curbside classic as well.

  • avatar
    Canucknucklehead

    These were darned good little cars, I know because I was working at a Chrysler store as a service advisor in their heyday. They did, however, tend to live, ahem, rather hard lives.

    One big problem was the cost of the Mitsubishi parts. All the part numbers started with “MB.” We used to joke it meant, “Mega bucks.”

  • avatar
    BobJava

    Nothing epitomized the early days of the teen “rice” phrase here in Northern California more than 90s Civics and 90s Eclipses, particularly the next-gen Eclipse. But even back then, if you weren’t lucky enough to have daddy buy you a new Eclipse, you tended to stay away from them. That should say something, given the irrational nature of teen males. The Mitsubishis had a terrible reliability rep, fair or not, even when they were new.

  • avatar
    panzerfaust

    All 1st gen Eclipse/Talon/Laser stories have to be filed under ‘it was fun while it lasted.’ I have a ’93 sitting in my driveway. It is winterized (sort of the way the wooly mammoths in Siberia were winterized) and waiting for someone younger and dumber than me to buy it, or a trip to the salvage yard. These little guys were quick and fun, but rusted fairly quickly, and had some serious engine problems early on. My son found out what a cam bearing was about 20 miles from home as he was screaming through some winding roads. The temp went up, and the oil pressure went down. To Mitsubishi’s credit, it ran enough to get on a car hauler and bring it home.
    Again, a lot of fun for the money, while it lasted. By the way, if anyone is thinking of buying an Eclipse, check on how much the insurance will cost you. You’d be surprised.

  • avatar
    Runfromcheney

    I have always known the DSMs to be notoriously unreliable. I mean, I haven’t seen a running first gen DSM in years; they all are half-dissassembled “project” cars.

    • 0 avatar
      golden2husky

      How about the blue DSM car “on the farm” in Canada?

    • 0 avatar
      Jim_in_NZ

      Respectfully have to disagree.
      I bought one last week, a GS 2 liter non-turbo automatic, imported into New Zealand. 1990 model with 98,000km (not miles) on the clock.
      Body needs a bit of tidying up (paint, mostly) but she runs fine and is nice to drive. And the cam belt has been replaced.

      Having the steering wheel on the ‘wrong’ side was a little unnerving at first, and might cause me grief when I’m next in the States and have a rental (previously gone by the rule of ‘wheel on the right, drive on the left’ and vis versa but now I’ve got a ‘wheel on the left, remember to keep to the left’…)
      And those mouse belts – I’ve driven in the US before but that was after the motorized seatbelt phase. They take a bit of getting used to.

      Apologies for the thread revival :)

  • avatar
    pgcooldad

    I think you are all missing one important aspect of the demise of these vehicles, insurance cost.

    Just look at the list below. What’s smack in the middle of Escalades and Vipers …. a Chevy Cobalt SS with a lowly 2.4L turbo engine.

    The insurance companies motto for these type of vehicles is “Build it and we will bill it”. Essentially, “Build it and we Kill it”.

    http://jalopnik.com/5280414/20-most-expensive-cars-to-insure-for-2009/gallery/

    I’m sure that’s why we don’t see at lot more turbos in the US. The insurance companies kill them with higher rates.

  • avatar
    Ion

    A friend in High School had a Talon turbo of this style. The car died shortly after buying it and he was shuffled between Mitshibishi and Dodge dealerships as he tried to get parts. I use to refer to it as his Turbocharged Lawn Ornament.

  • avatar
    wmba

    Hmm….

    I purchased my Talon TSi Turbo AWD new in May 1990. Used it for 12 summers, only once in snow when I was caught in a lulu driving back from Maine on pure summer tires at the end of April. It was amazing chugging through six inches of snow through the Wentworth Valley on Toyo Proxes. I had no wheelspin at all, but I was driving the beast gingerly. White knuckle time. Came through like a champ, didn’t even waver and sort of made me proud of its engineering.

    In 1990 I purchased it over a used Porsche 944 and new Nissan 300ZX. Maybe it only had 195hp, but it went like the wind and was FUN. Power to spare and a very linear power delivery unlike my current Legacy GT. I had also been looking at used Audi quattros (the real one based on the Audi coupe which I also owned), but the Talon was superior in every way that mattered to me. Proper turbocharged AWD as dreamed in the mind’s eye.

    During 1990, a pal and I drove from Halifax, NS to Windsor Ontario in 20 hours, including two border crossings into the US and back into Canada, and including gas and meal stops. Thank God for the Escort radar detector! Also that year, a member of my RC club bought the Quad 4 Beretta. That was strictly no contest against the Talon. Whatsoever. In any way. Same against the Saab 900 turbo my business partner had. Never understood the appeal of Saabs.

    It drank oil when cruised at 190 kph, a speed I maintained for some dozens of miles while attempting to debunk the myth that the cruise control wouldn’t work above 160 kph (100mph). It did. And I finally caught that Z24 V6 Cavalier that had got around traffic when I couldn’t. Those things were especially quick for only 130 hp.

    Also it had no trouble dusting off Camaro Z28s as Paul recently featured here on TTAC. I remember the look of disbelief on the face of one driver as the beast motored easily past his smog-gear strangled machine. But it was a straight up fight with Mustang 5.0s.

    The Talon also got decent fuel mileage on a trip, despite being heavy at 3300 lbs. About 30 mpg US (36 Canadian).

    Nothing went wrong, nothing fell off and I got rid of it for a song when the needed clutch replacement at only 69000 klicks was going to be a big what if… What if the overly confident mechanic ran into the problems detailed on the DSM board (blog)? And was $2500 going to be worth it. I decided not. The model had been out of production for 8 years then, and parts weren’t lying around on every street corner, nor was there much expertise available locally.

    Ah well. Managed to get it up to an indicated 225 kph dusting off a Mazda 626 Turbo once for my personal speed record.

    Funny how one slows done once past the magic age of 55 years. I look back on my hoonery those summer with fondness, and a wonder that I’m still here.

    Great car, and far less troublesome than my AWD Audis. Not even close. However, not driving it in winter no doubt helped.

    • 0 avatar
      crush157

      Ahh the memories. I bought a new 1990 GS turbo with a manual tranny and thought it was the fastest car I ever had…. I was in the demographic then. As others are thinking, I don’t think the gen 1 ever had pop up lights, that would be the Starion it replaced. (I have confused the 2 cars in a previous post on the Starion.) It was a great little car to haul in a straight line as you had to hold the steering wheel tight on the FWD version to counteract the torque steer…

    • 0 avatar
      rochskier

      @ wmba:

      I was lucky enough to be handed my father’s 5-speed black and silver 1990 Eagle Talon Tsi AWD as my first car in 1994, and I heartily second all of your statements. I still can’t believe they managed to install such a ridiculously good AWD system in a $19-$20k car.

      My experiences with hoonery and stoplight drag races also closely match yours. Additionally, as an inexperienced driver, I managed to slay a deer and a Ford Escort with my car.

      Once I managed to switch ends on black ice and go into a ditch backwards at 45 mph because I was a bit too quick on the brakes trying to slow down for the turn into my friend’s road. Thankfully we had no worries other than being a bit shaken. Turned the car over and drove her right out of the ditch no problem.

      I also always felt that a DSM would take care of you as long as you took care of it. I got regular oil changes and managed 141k of hammering on the original turbo.

      @ crush157:

      The 1st gen DSMs most assuredly did have pop-up lights. I can also state that high school girls dug the DSMs far more than the Starion.

  • avatar
    Steven Lang

    Mercury Capri (the euro import, 1971-77) – Never saw one at the auctions from that era. If you’re asking about the Australian Ford shitboxes that were designed to compete with a Miata… never bought one. It would be hard to sell one for $1500.

    Chevy Monza/Pontiac Sunbird – Monza’s haven’t been seen at my auctions for over a decade.

    Volkswagen Scirroco (Not a big seller, but try and find one today…) – Great cars for the hardcore enthusiast. Liked it a lot more than the Corrado

    Isuzu Impulse (ditto) – Same as the Storm… except for the highest version that was tuned by Lotus. Isuzu never sold a car that was ever worth a flip.

    Dodge Daytona – They can last given a VERY attentive and OCD owner. Very interesting electronics. Haven’t seen one in years.

    Chevy Beretta – These actually do very well in the redneck parts of my state (Georgia). I try to buy the nicest, low mileage versions I can find because most dealers figure they won’t sell. They always do.

    Geo Storm – Surprisingly durable powertrain. The interior is among the cheapest you will see anywhere. They can last but almost always look like crap.

    Ford Probe – The best of the bunch listed. Give me a 4 cylinder – 5 speed that’s built like a brick, and I’ll be able to sell it. Probes are far better than any domestic sport coupe made at the time if you’re looking at durability.

    Saturn Coupe – Can be cheap to operate. Buggy electrics. Sunroofs are from the 7th cirle of hell. Overall they are decent.

    Mazda MX-3 – Definitely a 20 something vehicle. If they are maintained they can last longer than anything mentioned here. I’ve seen one with over 290k on it. Good cars but very hard to keep the interior in good shape.

    • 0 avatar
      AccAzda

      Dude you so rule.

      I do appreciate your opinions. In the DE / Pa / NJ / MD area I see Daytonas around still, as well as Berettas, Probes, Saturn coupes. Heck, I still see Accords from 88-93 daily.. including a few rare wagons.

      But do remind me..
      Exactly who / what is / makes up the circles of hell.

  • avatar
    skor

    Brings back memories of the late 80′s and early 90′s when FWD sport coupes (most available in turbo versions) were common as roaches in a Bronx housing project. Eclipse, Probe, MX-6, Integra, Celica etc. You’ll never see that again. First off, the target demographic for these cars can’t afford to buy new cars now at all. You can also forget about middle aged accountants attempting to relive their youth. Most Americans over 30 are too fat to climb into such cars. It was interesting while it lasted.

  • avatar
    gimmeamanual

    Guy I worked with had a 95 Talon TSi AWD, right up around, oh, 550hp when I last knew him. Brutally fast, he won a Diamond Star Shootout class with it; drive 700 miles, win, drive home.

  • avatar
    HankScorpio

    I had a 90 GST that earned both me and a fraternity brother reckless driving tickets. I thought it was fairly reliable considering the abuse I gave it. One bonus is that it was simple to work on. It is the only car that I have ever swapped an engine on solo.

  • avatar
    boombox1

    I remember these from High School – one of the more desirable cars to park in the lot behind the gym. My recollection is that in the hands of a testosterone fueled driver, they might as well come pre-wrecked from the factory.

  • avatar
    Pig_Iron

    Speaking of Mitsubishi, I would love to see a Mitsubishi GTO/3000GT, (AKA Dodge Stealth). Twin turbo V6, 6 speed, AWD. And pop-up headlights to boot.

  • avatar

    A friend in high school had a ’91 or ’92 Talon XSi, it was fast, and a decent car. Turbos went out after a while and he kept driving it until it caught fire during Fry Street Fair. He was a stoner, so I guess it’s only fitting his car fried while he was getting baked.

  • avatar
    Power6

    The Eclipse is truly a classic, an american special built before Japan thought we liked fast sedans, and judging by the sales of the Galant VR4 they were right back then.

    I think you are not as sharp on the newer cars as the older ones. The aforementioned Galant VR4 was the basis for the Eclipse GSX. The Eclipse, in fact also the 3000GT, were based on a shortened Lancer platform. The fabled Lancer Evo did not come until 1992, round about the same time Subaru switched their turbo AWD drivetrains from their midsize Legacy to the compact Impreza.

    You said: The Eclipse has been permanently eclipsed by Subaru WRX/STIs and of course the Lancer Evo, although their numbers are probably a small fraction of what the Eclipse and friends sold in their heyday.

    I seriously doubt it. If you want to go apples to apples, the turbo AWD GSX/TSi models were a tiny fraction of sales of a specialty coupe(~1% IIRC). Mind you Subaru sold over 20k WRXs in the first year! If you want to talk whole lines, I am pretty sure that the Impreza or the Lancer handily beats the DSM sales of old.

    A good friend of mine had a 1997 Eagle Talon TSi AWD. The final year where they finally got rid of the stupid bright blue badging. I never realized just how rare that car was, probably only a couple hundred out there as wikipedia says there were only 4307 Talons made of all the models that year.

    A couple minutes on wikipedia would correct your facts and make your articles more credible.

  • avatar
    Chris

    I have this exact car in amazing condition the guy who i bought it from for 250 bucks destroyed the transmission and man it was a steal i put about $1’400 bucks into it and it runs great there is only a slight problem with a fluctuating idle which should be a simple fix either way i intend to get this care into showroom shape and let it be my sporty car.

  • avatar
    dgb100

    The first new car I bought was a 1991.  Great, great car, fun to drive, good mileage, you could beat the piss out of it, but a whole lot of torque pull when accelerating (not the AWD version).  Only major problem was the ECU died, utterly and completely shut the card down, but Mitsu had is replaced for free even though it wasn’t under warranty any longer.  Had every intention of buying another until they turned the Eclipse into some god awful looking Dodge Intrepid cloan with no soul what so ever.  So I got a WRX.  :)

    I also remember DROOLING over the 3000GT VR-4 at the showroom hoping one day to own one.  Fortunately my dad got one and demonstrated the utter folly of trying to keep one of those beautiful bastards in running condition.  But damn it looked good in the driveway.

  • avatar
    jesse53

    I actually bought  a ’91 laser turbo, after my son sold it to me to get another car.
    I recall driving behind 2 cars on a two lane that were driving way under the limit.
    Dropped that puppy in second & blew their doors off..the turbo was fun to say the least.

  • avatar
    RR1B

    Talk about a lucky find – I recently bought a 90 Plymouth Laser RS, non-turbo front wheel drive.

    It is in great shape! it reads 186,000km on the odometer, but has a rebuilt engine with under 40,000 kms on it. the body and interior are immaculate, and it runs well. only issues are rough start in cold temperatures.

    I live in Toronto, Canada, and while the Eagle Talon was common 15 years ago, the Laser seems to be one-of-a-kind around here these days.

    it was kept in a garage and babied by the woman who drove it and her hubby, who held onto it all this time for sentimental reasons.

    its also my first car, and I intend to do no cosmetic or performance mods. This baby is going to the classic car shows one day so I want to keep it looking like the day it rolled off the line.


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