Last time on our Diamante coverage, we learned about the near-luxury sedan’s somewhat delayed introduction to America. In the two-year translation from a Japanese market car to an American one, Diamante lost the majority of its interesting and advanced tech features and adopted a cheaper suspension design. Today we’ll find out what happened when Mitsubishi pitched the new and de-contented Diamante against the Lexus ES 300.
Today is the third installment in our coverage of the Mitsubishi Diamante, the Diamond Star brand’s only luxury offering ever sold in the North American market. Part I introduced us to the Diamante via the Sigma. That fancy hardtop Galant gave way to the Diamante in 1992, based on an extended length Galant platform. The second-generation hardtop sedan and its wagon counterpart were finished for 1995 on dealer lots, though fleet buyers (which fleets though?) had a Diamante available to them in 1996. In 1997, Mitsubishi was back with an all-new Diamante and aimed even higher than it had before.
In Part I of our Rare Rides Diamante coverage, we talked almost exclusively about our subject’s predecessor, the Sigma. Alternatively called Galant Σ, it was a hardtop luxury version of the standard Galant offered in the US market. It was dated when it arrived, too small, and not differentiated enough from the Galant to warrant its high price. U.S. customers mostly ignored it, and Canadians never knew it existed since they didn’t receive any Mitsubishis until 2002. Headed into the Nineties, Mitsubishi had no upscale sedan offering at all in North America, as the Galant was the firm’s largest car. That changed in 1992 with the arrival of the all-new Diamante.
Rare Rides Icons has featured much Japanese sedan content lately, including the mid-Eighties sedan mainstays and most recently a series on the luxurious and conservative Toyota Cressida. However, there’s a mainstream Japanese brand (or two) yet to be included in our sedan considerations. One of them is Mitsubishi, and today we’ll discuss the only true upmarket product the company ever offered in North America. It’s Diamante time.
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- Ajla I don't take any calls unless I'm off the street and parked. Before Carplay/Android Auto I would keep my phone in my pocket when driving but with those additional features I do plug it in now before I'm underway if I need to use an electronic map. However AA reads your text messages to you and I have used the voice reply feature a few times.
- Mike Beranek In my state, it's completely illegal to hold a phone in your hand while driving. I'm not sure why other states have not passed similar laws.That being said, I don't check notifications while driving. The one exception is if it rings, which is pretty rare. In that case I will glance at it to see if it was one of my family members, who would only resort to a phone call if there was an emergency (otherwise text).
- Cprescott Never answer a phone call that comes in while in the car; if I must make a call, the vehicle is stationary and off the road.
- Statikboy Are we expecting a continuation of the LX platform series any time soon? I don't remember it reaching the Magnum.
- Analoggrotto The facelifted front end with the narrow headlamps was a major improvement. Always liked these.