Fleet News

Mitsubishi Space Star 1.9 DI-D S - 5,176 miles



FOUR years ago, Mitsubishi launched a lower-medium sized car called the Space Star. Mitsubishi is very much a niche car manufacturer and the Space Star has seemed pretty invisible on the roads but if you look at it now, with the benefit of hindsight, its tall shape was an early indication of what was to come from the rest of the sector.

Since the Space Star was launched, cars such as the Peugeot 307, Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla have all seemed to follow its tall-bodied, high-driving position style. The Space Star range was freshened up in 2002, which included the introduction of a Renault-sourced common-rail diesel engine, while this year, a more powerful version of the diesel has been added to the range.

Producing 115bhp and a healthy 196lb-ft of torque, the Space Star is capable of moving along at a reasonable pace, with 0-62mph completed in 10.3 seconds and a theoretical top speed of 118mph.

Our top-of-the range S model is priced at £12,999 and comes with electric windows and mirrors, alloy wheels, ABS, central locking, titanium-effect trim, air conditioning and an electric sunroof.

As well as offering more equipment than you would expect for less than £13,000, it also proves a practical choice. The rear seats can slide forwards and backwards by 150mm and offer four reclining positions. Fold the rear seats forward and there is a usefully large luggage area, with a maximum of more than 1,300 litres.

The Space Star 1.9 DI-D majors on comfort and effortless performance. It might not fit the bill of a typical fleet car, but for the money it offers more toys than you might get with a lower-medium car while it has more pleasant driving characteristics and better performance than some of the van-based MPVs available in the £10,000-£13,000 price range.

It will be interesting to see if other road testers find it a viable alternative over the next few months.

Company car tax bill 2003/04 (22% tax-payer): £42 per month

CO2 emissions and fuel consumption data correct at time of writing. The latest figures are available in the Fleet News fuel cost calculator and the company car tax calculator.

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