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2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Review

The 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer ranks near the bottom of the compact car class. Although it offers wide range of four-cylinder engines, the Lancer's ranking is hurt by its low reliability rating, overly firm ride, lack of safety features, and cheap cabin materials.

Pros & Cons

  • Capable engines
  • Roomy cabin
  • Poor reliability rating
  • Firm ride
  • Small trunk
  • Below-average fuel economy

7.0

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 6.9
Performance: 7.0
Interior: 6.0
Total Cost of Ownership: 8.6
Safety: 8.7
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Overview

Is the 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer a Good Used Car?

The 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer is an OK used compact car. It boasts sporty road manners and a spacious cabin, but this sedan comes up short in several areas. In addition to having some of the lowest safety and reliability ratings in the class, it has a rough ride, a small trunk, and subpar fuel economy. Also, engine and road noises permeate the cabin. In this highly competitive class, most rivals bring more to the table.

Why You Can Trust Us

Our Mitsubishi Lancer review includes far more than just one person's opinion. We collected professional evaluations from 85 sources and combined them with concrete data like fuel economy estimates, safety features, and performance specs to help you make an informed buying decision.

The U.S. News Best Cars team has been ranking cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007, and our staff has a combined 75 years of automotive industry experience. To ensure our impartiality, we never accept expensive gifts or trips from car companies, and an outside team handles the advertising on our site.

How Much Is the 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer?

Based on listings for the 2015 Lancer on our site, the average list price is $11,900. That’s below average for the class. Prices range from $8,200 to $20,500 and vary depending on the vehicle's mileage, condition, location, and features.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

How Much Does the 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Cost to Own?

Expenses for fuel, insurance, maintenance, and repairs on the 2015 Lancer are estimated to be around $29,300 over five years, or $5,860 per year. Those are some of the highest costs in the class.

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New Mitsubishi Lancer?

Mitsubishi discontinued the Lancer after the 2017 model year.

Read about the 2017 Lancer »

There are a few new compact cars with starting prices that are in line with higher-priced 2015 Lancers. The 2019 Kia Forte, Hyundai Elantra, and Subaru Impreza all have more cargo room, more standard tech and safety features, smoother rides, and better fuel economy estimates. All three have starting prices that are lower than $19,000.

See the Best New Car Deals »

See the Best New Car Lease Deals »

Which Model Year of the Mitsubishi Lancer Is Best?

The 2015 Lancer belongs to a generation that spans the 2008 through 2018 model years. This generation saw a number of updates over the years.

The 2012 Lancer received refreshed exterior and interior styling, and Mitsubishi added the SE trim. For 2014, the Lancer dropped the Lancer Sportback body style and base DE trim and gained standard air conditioning and a four-speaker stereo.

For 2016, Mitsubishi discontinued the Evolution and the Ralliart models, revamped the Lancer’s continuously variable transmission, refreshed its exterior styling, and made automatic climate control and a USB port standard. It was also the last year for the Lancer GT trim. For 2017, the Lancer gained a standard 6.1-inch touch screen and a rearview camera.

Compare the 2014, 2015, and 2016 Lancer »

How Reliable Is the 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer?

The 2015 Lancer has a subpar reliability rating of 2.5 out of five from J.D. Power.

Read more about Lancer reliability »

2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Recalls

As of this writing, there are two recalls for the 2015 Lancer. The engine may stall or overheat, and a parking brake cable may wear away the fuel tank’s coating and cause a leak. Before buying this vehicle, make sure these recalls have been addressed.

See more information on Mitsubishi Lancer safety recalls »

Which Used Mitsubishi Lancer Model Is Right for Me?

The Lancer comes in six main trim levels: ES, SE, GT, Ralliart, GSR, and MR. There’s also a performance-oriented Evolution Final Edition available.

Navigating through the Lancer’s trims is a bit like going through a maze. Features and powertrains shift on just about every trim level. The base ES features a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine rated at 148 horsepower and 145 pound-feet of torque. It also comes with a five-speed manual transmission, a four-speaker stereo, cruise control, and cloth seats. Satellite radio, a six-speaker stereo, Bluetooth phone connectivity, a USB port, proximity keyless entry, and alloy wheels are available in the base trim.

The SE trim comes with a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) and a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine making 168 horsepower and 167 pound-feet of torque. All-wheel drive (called all-wheel control) comes standard. SE models also have a 6-inch touch screen, a six-speaker stereo, HD Radio, satellite radio, a USB port, Bluetooth, heated front seats, and a rearview camera. A nine-speaker Rockford-Fosgate premium stereo is available.

Mitsubishi Lancer GT models have the five-speed manual transmission, front-wheel drive and the 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine. They lose the heated front seats but gain a sport-tuned suspension, automatic climate control, proximity keyless entry, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and larger alloy wheels. Leather seats are available.

The Lancer Ralliart has a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine with an output of 237 horsepower and 253 pound-feet of torque. It comes with a six-speed automated manual transmission and all-wheel drive, as well as a nine-speaker sound system, rain-sensing windshield wipers, hill start assist, a limited slip differential, and sport-styled interior and exterior designs. Neither the sunroof nor leather upholstery is available with this trim.

The GSR tunes the Ralliart’s engine to put out 291 horsepower and 300 pound-feet of torque. It also has the five-speed manual transmission from the base and GT trims. GSR models also have Mitsubishi’s super all-wheel control (S-WAC), Brembo high-performance brakes, and a sport anti-lock braking system, but these models lose proximity keyless entry. Leather upholstery and heated front seats are available.

The MR trim regains proximity keyless entry and the six-speed dual-clutch transmission, but it has the same engine as the GSR trim. Finally, the Lancer Evolution Final Edition features a turbo-four engine that makes 303 horsepower and 305 pound-feet of torque.

See 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer trims and specs »

What Does Mitsubishi's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Mitsubishi offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles five years old or less and with fewer than 60,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. Mitsubishi certified pre-owned vehicles receive the balance of the original new-car 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty. Each CPO Mitsubishi must pass a 123-point inspection. Additional benefits like towing and 24-hour roadside assistance may be available, so read the Mitsubishi warranty page carefully.

Mitsubishi has one of the best CPO programs among affordable car manufacturers. Only Mini’s, Kia’s, Buick’s, and Smart's are better, according to our analysis.

See the best CPO programs »

Read more about the Mitsubishi certified pre-owned program »

How Safe Is the Lancer?

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named the Lancer a 2015 Top Safety Pick, giving it the highest rating of Good in four crash tests and the second-highest rating of Acceptable in the driver-side small overlap front test. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 2015 Lancer an overall rating of four out of five stars, with four stars in frontal crash, side crash, and rollover tests.

No standard active safety features come in this sedan. A rearview camera is optional. Most rivals offer more safety features.

See Lancer safety scores »

2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer or 2015 Honda Civic?

Available as a sedan or a coupe, the 2015 Honda Civic is a good compact car with an upscale cabin and plenty of passengers space. The Honda has a smoother ride than the Mitsubishi, and there's a sport-oriented Civic Si trim for those who want a corner carver. On top of that, the Honda has lower ownership costs and a better safety score. You’ll probably pay more for the Civic, but it’s clearly a superior vehicle.

Which Is Better: 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer or 2015 Subaru WRX?

The 2015 Subaru WRX stands out as one of the most fun-to-drive vehicles in the class. It has standard all-wheel drive, dynamic handling, and two potent turbocharged engine options. Its steering offers good feedback, though the brakes can feel uneven at times. Additionally, the Subaru has a better safety score than the Lancer. But it's pricier than the Lancer by $13,000 on average. If your budget stretches that far, go for the Subaru.

Compare the Lancer, Civic, and WRX »

2015 Lancer Performance

How Does the 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Drive?

This sedan has several powertrain options. The base ES has a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 148 horsepower and comes with a five-speed manual transmission. SE models upgrade to a 168-horsepower 2.4-liter four-cylinder and a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). The Mitsubishi Lancer GT keeps this engine but swaps out the CVT for a manual transmission.

The Ralliart kicks things up a notch with a 237-horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine and a six-speed automated manual transmission. Both the GSR and MR trims tweak this turbo-four to squeeze out 291 horsepower. The MR comes with the same transmission from the Ralliart, while the GSR uses the five-speed manual. The Lancer Evolution Final Edition has a 2.0-liter turbo-four engine that makes 303 horsepower and comes with the five-speed manual transmission.

The base engine is sufficient for daily driving, though it makes a lot of noise under throttle. The 2.4-liter engine feels more energetic, though the CVT doesn’t make good use of  the added power. The turbocharged powertrain is even livelier, though even with that, the transmission can make improper shifts at lower speeds.

This Mitsubishi boasts playful handling, especially in the GT trim with its sport-tuned suspension. The ride feels stiff, however, and noise from the road and wind invade the cabin. Front-wheel drive comes standard, and a variety of all-wheel drive options, including the brand’s super all-wheel control (S-AWC), are available.

Does the 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Get Good Gas Mileage?

Fuel economy estimates for this sedan range from 26 mpg in the city and 33 mpg on the highway for models with the turbocharged 2.0-liter engine and six-speed automatic transmission to a low of 17/22 mpg city/highway for the Lancer Evolution equipped with the automatic transmission. All figures are subpar for the class.

Read more about Lancer performance »

2015 Lancer Interior

How Many People Does the 2015 Lancer Seat?

The 2015 Lancer seats five people on cloth upholstery. Sport seats, leather upholstery, heated front seats, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel are available.

Legroom is generous in both rows. Some critics said the front seats were comfortable and supportive, while others noted that getting comfortable is difficult without a telescoping steering wheel. The cabin is drab and full of cheap-looking plastics.

How Many Child Car Seats Fit in the 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer?

This vehicle has two complete sets of LATCH connectors for securing child car seats and a third tether anchor for the rear middle seat.

2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Features

The base Lancer comes with a four-speaker stereo. Upgrades include a 6.1-inch touch screen or a 7-inch touch screen, navigation, a six speaker stereo or a nine-speaker Rockford Fosgate sound system, Bluetooth, a USB port, automatic climate control, voice commands, and proximity keyless entry.

According to some critics, the available touch screen was easy to use, but others expressed a desire for more physical controls. The graphics are also outdated compared to rival systems.

See 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer specs »

Read more about Lancer interior »

2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Dimensions

Mitsubishi Lancer Cargo Space

The size of the trunk varies based on the trim level. The ES, SE, and GT trims have 12.3 cubic feet of space (11.8 with the subwoofer), and the Ralliart has 10 cubic feet (9.1 with the subwoofer). GSR, MR, and Evolution models have 6.9 cubic-foot trunks. All of those figures are small for the compact car class.

2015 Lancer Length and Weight

The 2015 Lancer measures between 14.8 feet and 15 feet long. Its curb weight ranges from 2,888 to 3,571 pounds. The gross vehicle weight ranges from 3,969 to 4,542 pounds.

Where Was the 2015 Mitsubishi Lancer Built?

Mitsubishi built the 2015 Lancer in Japan.

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