2019 Fiat 500 vs. 2019 Mitsubishi Mirage

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The 500 has standard Reactive Head Restraints, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Reactive Head Restraints system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Mirage doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The Fiat 500 has Daytime Running Lights to help keep it more visible under all conditions. Canadian government studies show that driving with lights during the day reduces accidents by 11% by making vehicles more conspicuous. The Mirage doesn’t offer Daytime Running Lights.

The 500’s blind spot mirrors use wide-angle convex mirrors mounted in the corner of each side view mirror to reveal objects that may be in the driver’s blind spots. The Mirage doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver’s blind spots.

Both the 500 and the Mirage have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras and available rear parking sensors.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Fiat 500 is safer than the Mitsubishi Mirage:

 

500

Mirage

 

Driver

STARS

4 Stars

4 Stars

Neck Injury Risk

30%

40%

Neck Stress

406 lbs.

435 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH, results indicate that the Fiat 500 is safer than the Mitsubishi Mirage:

 

500

Mirage

 

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

166

168

Chest Movement

.7 inches

1 inches

Abdominal Force

199 G’s

252 G’s

 

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Spine Acceleration

70 G’s

79 G’s

Hip Force

852 lbs.

959 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty

The 500’s corrosion warranty is unlimited miles longer than the Mirage’s (unlimited vs. 100,000 miles).

There are over 17 percent more Fiat dealers than there are Mitsubishi dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the 500’s warranty.

Reliability

The Fiat 500’s engines use a cast iron block for durability, while the Mirage’s engine uses an aluminum block. Aluminum engine blocks are much more prone to warp and crack at high temperatures than cast iron.

The engines in the 500 have a single overhead cam for simplicity. The engine in the Mirage has dual overhead cams, which add to the number of moving parts and the complexity of the cylinder heads.

To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the 500 has a standard 120-amp alternator. The Mirage’s 85-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.

Engine

The 500’s standard 1.4 turbo 4 cyl. produces 57 more horsepower (135 vs. 78) and 76 lbs.-ft. more torque (150 vs. 74) than the Mirage’s 1.2 DOHC 3 cyl. The 500 Abarth’s optional 1.4 turbo 4 cyl. produces 79 more horsepower (157 vs. 78) and 109 lbs.-ft. more torque (183 vs. 74) than the Mirage’s 1.2 DOHC 3 cyl. The 500 Abarth’s standard 1.4 turbo 4 cyl. produces 82 more horsepower (160 vs. 78) and 96 lbs.-ft. more torque (170 vs. 74) than the Mirage’s 1.2 DOHC 3 cyl.

Fuel Economy and Range

The 500 has 1.3 gallons more fuel capacity than the Mirage (10.5 vs. 9.2 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Transmission

To facilitate fast shifting and allow the driver to focus on the road, the 500 Abarth has a standard up-shift light to indicate when the engine is approaching redline. The Mirage doesn’t offer an up-shift light.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the 500’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Mirage:

 

500

Mirage

Front Rotors

11.1 inches

9 inches

Rear Rotors

9.4 inches

7” drums

The Fiat 500 has standard four-wheel disc brakes for better stopping power and improved directional control in poor weather. Only rear drums come on the Mirage. Drums can heat up and make stops longer, especially with antilock brakes that work much harder than conventional brakes.

The 500 stops much shorter than the Mirage:

 

500

Mirage

 

70 to 0 MPH

172 feet

184 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the 500 has larger standard tires than the Mirage (195/45R16 vs. 165/65R14). The 500 Abarth’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Mirage (205/40R17 vs. 175/55R15).

The 500’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Mirage’s standard 65 series tires. The 500 Abarth’s optional tires have a lower 40 series profile than the Mirage GT/LE/G4 SE’s 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the 500 has standard 16-inch wheels. Smaller 14-inch wheels are standard on the Mirage. The 500 Abarth’s optional 17-inch wheels are larger than the 15-inch wheels on the Mirage GT/LE/G4 SE.

Suspension and Handling

The 500 Abarth has front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the 500 Abarth flat and controlled during cornering. The Mirage’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.

The 500 has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Mirage doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

Chassis

The 500 is 5 inches shorter than the Mirage Hatchback, making the 500 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces. The 500 is 2 feet, 1.1 inches shorter than the Mirage G4.

Servicing Ease

The 500 has a maintenance free battery for long life without checking the battery’s water level. The Mirage doesn’t have a maintenance free battery, so the water level in the battery’s cells must be checked often to prevent damage.

Ergonomics

The engine computer on the 500 disables the starter while the engine is running. The Mirage’s starter can be accidentally engaged while the engine is running, making a grinding noise and possibly damaging the starter and ring gear.

The 500’s front power windows lower with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Mirage’s passenger windows don’t open automatically.

The Mirage’s power locks don’t automatically lock the doors. The 500’s standard power locks automatically lock the doors when a certain speed is reached. This is an important feature for occupant safety. Locked doors are proven to open less often in collisions, and they are also effective in preventing crime at traffic lights. (The power lock’s automatic feature may have to be activated by your dealer.)

The 500’s speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The Mirage’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

The 500’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. The Mirage doesn’t offer heated side mirrors.

The 500’s power mirror controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The Mirage’s power mirror controls are on the dash, hidden behind the steering wheel, where they are awkward to manipulate.

With standard voice command, the 500 offers the driver hands free control of the radio and the navigation computer by simply speaking. The Mirage doesn’t offer a voice control system.

Economic Advantages

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the 500 is less expensive to operate than the Mirage because typical repairs cost much less on the 500 than the Mirage, including $6 less for a water pump, $98 less for a muffler, $12 less for front brake pads, $194 less for a starter, $128 less for front struts, $94 less for a timing belt/chain and $626 less for a power steering pump.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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