Manufacturers of the R5 specification Mitsubishi, Mpart AB of Örebro in Sweden, are pleased to reveal a facelift update for the car. The main changes include new front and rear sections of the bodywork that are in keeping with the 2016 design for the standard production Mirage and Space Star models.
In addition to the new panels, Mpart AB has taken the opportunity to carry out a series other small updates and refinements around the car. Head of the Mitsubishi R5 project Tomas Weng explains that, whilst the intrinsic shell remains the same, the new additions will make a difference:
"The new panels replicate the 2016 updates that have appeared on the road-going version of the car. Because of the wider grille aperture and revised design, cooling efficiency and airflow around the car is improved. The updates are all part of ensuring the car remains competitive in its class and reflects the aesthetic changes that have been introduced by the manufacturer."
The first Mitsubishi Mirage to incorporate the updates is that of the UK-based Spencer Sport team, who are the official distributors of the car in the UK and Ireland. It will be driven competitively for the first time on the forthcoming Ulster Rally that takes place on 19th & 20th August, by former Irish Tarmac Champion Garry Jennings.
Following a test in Wales this week, where Jennings - accompanied by his regular co-driver Rory Kennedy - drove the facelift R5 specification Mitsubishi for the first time, he said:
"It didn't take long to feel comfortable. It's a very drivable and nimble car. We did some work on set ups and, while it's different from what I usually drive, I soon got used to the power delivery and the Mitsubishi's excellent handling and brakes. I'm confident there's plenty of speed in the car, so we're in a great position ahead of next week's pre-event tests in Ireland."
Mpart and Spencer Sport are anticipating considerable interest in the updated version of the Mirage, particularly from drivers and teams in the UK and Ireland who are looking for a right-hand-drive version of an R5 or R5+ specification car, as the Mitsubishi is currently the only car of its kind to offer a LHD and RHD option.