2010 Mitsubishi Galant ES
2010 Mitsubishi Galant ES. Click image to enlarge

Related articles on Autos
Test Drive: 2004 Mitsubishi Galant LS V6
Test Drive: 2005 Mitsubishi Galant GTS
Test Drive: 2006 Mitsubishi Galant GTS
DBDR: 2006 Mitsubishi Galant GTS
First Drive: 2007 Mitsubishi Galant Ralliart
Test Drive: 2007 Mitsubishi Gallant Ralliart
DBDR: 2009 Mitsubishi Galant
First Drive: 2009 Mitsubishi Galant Ralliart
Test Drive: 2009 Mitsubishi Galant Ralliart
Used cars: Mitsu Galant, 2004-2009
Buyer’s Guide: 2005 Mitsubishi Galant
Buyer’s Guide: 2006 Mitsubishi Galant
Buyer’s Guide: 2007 Mitsubishi Galant
Buyer’s Guide: 2008 Mitsubishi Galant
Buyer’s Guide: 2009 Mitsubishi Galant
Buyer’s Guide: 2010 Mitsubishi Galant

Manufacturer’s web site
Mitsubishi Motors Canada

Join Autos’s Facebook group
Follow Autos on Twitter

Review and photos by Peter Bleakney

Find this vehicle in Autos’s Classified Ads

Photo Gallery:
2010 Mitsubish Galant

Let’s have a show of hands. How many of you have seen a Mitsubishi Galant on the road recently? Um… okay. Anyone even know what a Galant looks like?

Cue the crickets.

This, the ninth-generation of Mitsubishi’s four-door mid-sized sedan, has been around since 2004, and flies so far under shopper’s radar that it’s almost subterranean. Last year Mitsu moved 463 Galants in Canada (total Mitsubishi sales were 19,786). Compare that to 15,524 Toyota Camrys and 16,526 Ford Fusions.

For 2010, Mitsubishi has streamlined the Galant line to one model – the 160-hp 2.4-litre four-cylinder ES with four-speed ‘manumatic’, un-heated fabric seats and nary an available option. Asking price is $23,998, which puts it right in the thick of this fiercely competitive segment: Exhibit A, the all-new and very stylish 2011 Hyundai Sonata that packs a 198-hp direct-injection 2.4-litre four with six-speed auto for $24,249. Exhibit B, the well-equipped 175-hp 2.5-litre 2010 Ford Fusion SEL with six-speed auto and 17-inch alloys for $23,249.

Like sending your auntie out onto the rugby field, it’s almost cruel what Mitsubishi is asking of this aging family sedan.

2010 Mitsubishi Galant ES
2010 Mitsubishi Galant ES
2010 Mitsubishi Galant ES
2010 Mitsubishi Galant ES. Click image to enlarge

Don’t get me wrong. The Galant is not a bad car. It’s just not a great car, and in this company you may as well just stay home.

For 2010, the Galant gets side skirts, black headlight surrounds (from last year’s 3.8-litre V6 GT model) a new grille and 16-inch alloys that look somewhat lost in the wheel wells. Not particularly ugly, the Galant is merely heroically nondescript, which makes it a fine choice for would-be bank robbers. “Witnesses describe the getaway vehicle as, uh… car-like.”

In the plus ledger, the Galant feels structurally rock solid and exhibits a matured and refined ride/handling balance that could be a lesson for some of its competitors. While the steering isn’t particularly communicative, it is quick and accurate. All in all, it’s quite a comfortable sedan with good seats, plenty of headroom and capacious rear quarters. The 377-litre trunk is average for this group but the back seat does not flip forward due to the structural bulkhead. There is a ski pass through.

The 160-hp, 157 lb.-ft. 2.4-litre four has sufficient poke, but it is vocal and coarse when pressed. My wife asked if it was a diesel. As with most Mitsubishi vehicles, you get the sense the engineers have been a little chintzy with the sound insulation.

And speaking of chintzy, what’s up with the centre console? Unless you harbour a deep nostalgia for mid-eighties boom boxes, this incongruous silvery-plastic collection of oversized knobs and buttons will be nothing more than an embarrassing conversation piece – which is too bad, because the rest of the interior, at least by Mitsubishi’s standards, is pretty good.

2010 Mitsubishi Galant ES
2010 Mitsubishi Galant ES
2010 Mitsubishi Galant ES. Click image to enlarge

It appears reasonably well assembled with a nicely padded dash top, some okay chrome-like accents, shiny black trim and very legible major gauges. This cabin is leagues ahead of a 2010 Outlander CUV I just tested that had some inexcusably cheap bits and sounded like there was a family of crickets living in the back.

You can always count on Mitsubishi for decent audio, however, and the standard 140-watt 6-speaker AM/FM/CD system sounds good. New for 2010 is an auxiliary input; too bad about the lousy FM reception.

Cruise control is included but the steering column does not telescope.

While the four-speed auto is down one or two cogs from the competition, it’s a smooth and quick shifting unit. In day-to-day operation it works just fine, and I didn’t really miss the extra gears. You can shift manually by nudging the shifter to the right gate, where it responds with alacrity. On the highway, the Galant settles into a relaxed cruise with 2,100 rpm showing at 100 km/h.

Mitsubishi has added standard stability control to the 2010 Galant ES, which you don’t find on the base Mazda6 or Chrysler Sebring; six airbags and ABS brakes round out the safety features.

Now into its seventh year, the 2010 geriatric Galant is pretty much redundant when stacked against the competition. If Mitsubishi were serious about selling these (which it doesn’t appear to be given the lack of marketing), they’d drop the price a couple of grand; at least then it would have a fighting chance.

Barring that, you can be assured it will be your next rental in Florida.

Pricing: 2010 Mitsubishi Galant ES
  • Base price: $23,998
  • Options: None
  • A/C tax: $100
  • Freight: $1,245
  • Price as tested: $25,343
    Click here for options, dealer invoice prices and factory incentives

  • Buyer’s Guide: 2010 Mitsubishi Galant

  • Buyer’s Guide: 2010 Chevrolet Malibu
  • Buyer’s Guide: 2010 Ford Fusion
  • Buyer’s Guide: 2010 Honda Accord
  • Buyer’s Guide: 2010 Mazda6
  • Buyer’s Guide: 2010 Toyota Camry
  • Buyer’s Guide: 2010 Subaru Legacy
  • Buyer’s Guide: 2010 Toyota Camry
  • Buyer’s Guide: 2010 Volkswagen Passat

    Crash test results
  • National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
  • Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS)
  • Connect with Autos.ca