Overview & Reviews
For decades, the Mitsubishi Galant assumed the role of fringe player in the family-sedan game. While representing a good value for the budget-conscious consumer, it was no match for the class leaders due to its small backseat, mostly mediocre powertrains and uninspiring interior design and execution.
Having watched other automakers successfully supersize their sedans with premium features and larger V6s under the hood, Mitsubishi knew not to fight the tide when it came time to redesign the Galant. Consequently, the latest, fifth-generation model was engineered exclusively for the North American market. Its dimensions grew considerably, as did the power of its top engines.
While the Mitsubishi Galant is certainly a bargain in SE trim, most four-cylinder-powered midsize competitors would ultimately be a better, more rewarding choice. Folks who don't necessarily follow the crowd or demand the latest glitz and glamour from their midsize sedan may be tempted, but in general, you can do better.
Current Mitsubishi Galant
The Mitsubishi Galant midsize sedan comes in two trim levels -- base ES and SE. The ES has the basics, including air-conditioning, full power features and a CD player. The SE adds alloy wheels, a sunroof, some stylized trim, a rearview camera, automatic climate control, a power driver seat, heated front seats, Bluetooth, a navigation system and an upgraded sound system. Options include leather upholstery and port-installed accessories like an iPod interface, remote ignition and for ES models, a rearview camera.
A 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine is the only choice and is mated to a four-speed automatic transmission. Power output is weak, at only 160 horsepower, and trails almost all competitors. Fuel economy is merely average.
With unique styling inside and out, the Galant features one of the more distinctive cabin designs in its class, with a cascading center console and bright blue backlighting at night. It's distinctive, but it also looks a bit like a boom box and it's constructed of some low-grade plastics. The front seats are agreeable and roomy, while rear-seat comfort is adequate but not up to class leaders in terms of support. Unfortunately, the seatback doesn't fold down, but there is a ski/cargo pass-through to increase utility.
Though underpowered, we've found the Mitsubishi Galant to be one of the more fun-to-drive family sedans. When cornering, the Galant remains flat and predictable and feels smaller than it is. The ride is smooth and composed, yet a surprising amount of feedback from the road is transmitted through the steering wheel. In terms of overall refinement and feature content, however, the Galant has been surpassed by newer competing models.
Used Mitsubishi Galant Models
The most recent generation of the Mitsubishi Galant debuted for the 2004 model year. The trim levels initially offered were the four-cylinder DE and ES, alongside the V6-powered LS and GTS. That V6 was a 3.8-liter mill that produced 230 hp and 250 lb-ft of torque. While initially competitive, this output was quickly eclipsed by most competitors and its fuel economy was comparatively poor. Its standard four-speed automatic was always behind the times until it was replaced by a five-speed for '07. A four-cylinder SE model, featuring leather upholstery and automatic climate control, was added for '06.
For '07, the LS was dropped and the high-performance Ralliart debuted, which featured a higher-output 3.8-liter V6 with 258 horses and 258 lb-ft of torque. The next year, the GTS model disappeared, leaving just the DE, ES and Ralliart. For 2009 a new grille and taillights debuted, while trim levels were shuffled -- the base DE trim was dropped and the Sport Edition (SE) and Sport V6 appeared.
For 2010, the Galant lineup was pared down to only two trim levels -- the ES and SE. The V6 engine was also cut, leaving only the weak four-cylinder under the hood. Not all was lost, though, as premium audio, navigation and a rearview camera were added to the SE.
Safety features such as antilock disc brakes, traction control, front-seat side airbags and full-length side curtain airbags were variously (depending on year and trim level) have been available on the Galant. Stability control was not offered until 2010.
If you're looking for a used current-generation Galant, you should be able to score a good deal on one, as resale value is not a strong point. As such, a well-maintained specimen qualifies as a genuine used-car bargain though reliability may be a notch or two below Japan's best.
The previous-generation Mitsubishi Galant was available from 1999-2003. It was the first Galant to come with a V6 engine, and its exterior styling drew favorable comparisons to BMW sedans. In 2002, its design was again freshened inside and out, with trim and content changes like Infinity sound systems, a sunroof and 16-inch wheels sprucing things up through the following year. For shoppers on a budget who can overlook the small backseat, average powertrains and uninspiring materials and refinement, a Galant of this vintage can offer true low-cost value as an entry-level ride or possibly a second car.
The only other Galant one will likely encounter with any frequency will be the generation offered in the U.S. from 1994-'98. It soldiered on through those years, juggling content and trim levels, but was destined to remain a second-tier value player due to its relatively compact dimensions, cramped interior, four-cylinder power and lack of overall refinement. Don't expect great things from this generation, but if you manage to find one, it's likely to be bargain-priced.
User Reviews:Showing 1 through 10 of 757.00
SE Galant 20005, A great purchase! - 2005 Mitsubishi Galant
By HeidiB - December 23 - 6:16 am
I simply can't say enough good things about the SE model. The spoiler, exhaust, leather interior, rims and taillight upgrades are phenomenal. I enjoy the space and roominess of the vehicle and how luxurious it is for the price I purchased it for. It's a great change of pace from it's rather plain-jane competitors (Accord and Camry). Wish this vehicle was publicized the way those are, and the warranty is a huge reason to make this your car! I don't worry about it expiring prior to my loan being paid off. Additionally, can you beat 0% financing?
Satisfied Buyer - 2003 Mitsubishi Galant
By Baltimore Buyer - December 14 - 5:56 pm
I am VERY pleased with the handling and how smooth the car is. Lots of space on the front seat (I am 6'02") and the truck. Very comfortable and luxury interior. Little space on the back seats (I think this was corrected in the new Gallant). The engine has very good power for a V4 and such a big car. Both a/c and heater do a perfect job. The only serious problem is the poor gas economy. The car makes 24 m/g (average city/hwy), while my old Sentra with 160K miles regularly got me 30 m/g.
What a great car! - 1996 Mitsubishi Galant
By MATH - December 9 - 2:00 am
I bought my Galant S (5 speed manual) in December 2001 with about 80k on it. So far I have put almost 25K. This car is by far the most reliable I have ever owned. Engine is strong, acceleration and braking are very good. Now on the down side... * The RPM indicator and some of the Dash lights (A/C knobs) have started working only part-time! * Water gets in the trunk every time it rains. But hey, for the money, the age and mileage of this vehicle, I am not complaining!
Galant GS - 1996 Mitsubishi Galant
By Monkey - December 5 - 6:56 pm
Great little car. Even after adding some bolt on power (turbo) the car was very reliable. This is until we hit 170000, then the engine had a few stumbles. At 175000 the engine said its about my time and the transmission soon followed. I am sure that had this drivetrain remained stock it would have easily hit the 250000 mark.
My best car yet! - 2002 Mitsubishi Galant
By Shizzleman - December 1 - 1:30 pm
I have had my Galant for 2yrs and I love it. I have not had many problems. The only problem I faced was when the heating coil got clogged and that cost about $600 to replace. Other than that the mechanics say my car is flawless. I do my regular oil changes and get maintenance and the car does the rest.
Very reliable vehicle - 2009 Mitsubishi Galant
By nick131 - November 30 - 12:59 am
Bought the car with 34k miles , now have 80k miles and still drives the same. The only maintenance performed have been oil changes and front brake pads once. Drives great on highways and passes other cars easily. Five speed speedtronic comes handy on snow days. great car for everyday commuter.
best car ever - 2003 Mitsubishi Galant
By karen1958us - November 28 - 10:00 am
drives like $30000 but for under$20000
My Mitsubishi Galant - 2007 Mitsubishi Galant
By TripleKings - November 24 - 1:16 am
I have driven the Honda Accord, Toyota Camry and Corolla, as well as the Nissan Altima. For the overall driving experience/price/service my Mitsubishi Galant wins. I recently traded a 2004 for a new 2007 model and I could not be any happier. I never had any problems with the 2004, I just wanted a new vehicle. It has plenty of room, runs smooth and fast, and gets good gas mileage. It is all about the money and for the money - well go drive one for yourself and see.
Quick, sporty, more bang for your buck. - 2006 Mitsubishi Galant
By Kaarst - November 20 - 3:43 pm
I bought this car with 3,000 test drive miles on it. It was brand new. Almost a year later - it still drives like new. Quick off the line, quick stops, it hugs the road through cornering. It has the look and feel of a European driving machine. "Poor man's BMW" is what I call it.
Bad sway arm linkage front and rear - 2003 Mitsubishi Galant
By craig r - November 15 - 7:13 pm
I bought the car new in Nov. 03 with 300 miles on it at the dealership. I bought the exterior package, but find the exterior is not holding up too well with dents and paint chipping. I have had to have the rear struts replaced at only 20,000 mile. Under warranty. I then had to have the rear sway bar linkage kits replaced not under warranty, sounded like bowling balls rolling around very disturbing, makes for a loud ride. Now at 40,000 miles I have to replace the front sway bar linkage kits. more bowling balls! The vent fan motor is also going out when I turn the fan on, a loud grinding sound happens then it finally quiets. to say I am disappointed is an understatement. How abut that resale val