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The Mitsubishi Lancer, fresh of off last year's complete redesign, receives a new available 2.4L engine for 2009, along with a new ES-Sport trim that adds fog lights, a large rear spoiler, and front and side air dams. A Ralliart model, which replaces 2008's Lancer Evolution GSR, is expected to be released later in the model year.
The 2009 Mitsubishi Lancer is available with two engine choices, with a third expected later in the model year on the Lancer Ralliart. The DE, ES, and ES-Sport Lancers are powered by a 152-horsepower, 2.0L four-cylinder engine (though the engine only makes 143 horsepower in California-emission states), while the GTS sports a bored-and-stroked version of the base engine. The resulting displacement on the GTS is 2.4L, with an output of 168 horsepower. Either engine can be mated to a five-speed manual or continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). The CVT also features a Sportronic mode, which simulates six gears that can be selected using magnesium steering-wheel paddle shifters.
The base DE model is offered at an especially low price point but doesn't come with standard air conditioning. The ES model brings a more luxurious and refined package, with color-keyed door handles, chrome grille trim, and five-spoke alloy wheels. New for 2009, the ES-Sport adds fog lamps, a rear spoiler, front and side air dams, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. At the top of the range, the performance-oriented GTS brings a sport-tuned suspension, bigger wheels and brakes, and a chrome tailpipe tip. Inside, the GTS brings many more convenience features, including a Bluetooth interface, an upgraded audio system, cruise control, automatic climate control, and rear-seat heater ducts.
The Sun and Sound Package, on ES-Sport and GTS models, brings a 650-watt Rockford-Fosgate premium audio system with six-disc CD changer, Sirius satellite radio, a power glass sunroof, and Mitsubishi's FAST-Key entry system, which allows the driver to enter and start the car with the key fob in a purse or pocket. All Lancer models come prepped for the Sirius service. A navigation system is available on all but the base Lancer DE, and it includes a 30-gigabyte hard-drive navigation system and digital music server.
Front seat-mounted side air bags and side-curtain air bags, along with a driver's knee-protection air bag, are standard on all Lancer models. Anti-lock brakes with electronic brakeforce distribution (EBD) are standard on all models but the DE with manual transmission.
Mitsubishi expects to release the Lancer Ralliart later in the model year. The car will pack 235 horsepower, a turbo 2.0L, and all-wheel drive, with gear shifts handled by the twin clutch SST gearbox.