Fresh Face for 2007 Mitsubishi Galant
Ralliart Leads Facelift
Mitsubishi has given its largest sedan a bit of a refresh for the 2007 model year and previewed the updates at the 2006 Chicago Auto Show, ahead of summer 2006 sales. These relatively minor changes bring along with them a 258HP 3.8L V6 Ralliart model as well as a new five-speed automatic transmission. VehicleVoice and AutoPacific were at the show to take a first look. At first glance, the Galant Ralliart adopts a more grown-up look while retaining the aggressive stance the performance model in the range needs.
Changes to all 2007 model year Galant models include a new grille with a more distinctive chrome surround, a new front fascia and bumper, and a new rear bumper fascia, but the Ralliart steps it up a notch. The Ralliart takes the sporting personality and leaves the GTS model to take a more luxury-oriented personality. The LS model of the past few years is dropped, and DS and ES remain as the four-cylinder-engine volume cars, but the ES can be dressed up to look like the V6-equipped GTS. Though there are changes for all 2007 Galant models, only the Ralliart was the star of this show.
Ralliart Serves as Mitsubishi’s Sporty Trim Level
Mitsubishi’s Ralliart subsidiary has been modifying and racing Mitsubishi models since 1984, but has recently been expanding into the showroom and preparing SEMA concept cars. Ralliart models take Mitsubishi’s Driven to Thrill logo to heart, adding various body tweaks, suspension upgrades, and sometimes an enhanced powertrain. For the Galant, this means a mesh grille with chrome surround, projector-style headlamps, two-tone color bumpers, body-color side air dams, eighteen-inch wheels, and Ralliart badges. Though the Ralliart Galant does without the nostril-like air vents or the six-speed manual transmission of the 2004 SEMA concept, the car carries a purposeful and aggressive look that is atypically subtle for Mitsubishi.
As mentioned, the Ralliart bumps the GTS’s 3.8L V6 from 230HP to 258HP, but also provides 220 lb-ft of its peak 258 lb-ft torque at a mere 2000 rpm. Though we haven’t had the chance yet to personally confirm it, the result should be an aggressive feel off the line. Galant Ralliart uses the same basic suspension as the rest of the range, but gets higher-rate springs and dampers, as well as its own 21-mm rear stabilizer bar. Wheels are eighteen-inchers, with low-profile tires completing the look. Ralliart uses the same larger front disc brakes in the front as the GTS, but also gets larger rear discs.
What’s New Inside for 2007?
Interior updates are less extensive than those outside. All models get new door trim, a new knit-fabric headliner, and chrome accents. The Ralliart and GTS can be ordered with a new DVD navigation system, which includes a seven-inch navigation screen atop the center stack rather than the standard 4.9-inch color LCD display for trip computer. A new Rockford-Fosgate factory-installed radio upgrade is standard on the Ralliart and optional for GTS and ES models. Beating XM’s free three-month trial, Sirius offers a free six months with the satellite radio package. Side curtain air bags now complement the already-standard front-seat-mounted side impact airbags.
Convenience features standard on the Ralliart but available elsewhere in the lineup include heated front seats, automatic climate control, power sunroof, Homelink transmitter and auto-dimming mirror, and leather seats. Ralliart’s leather seats are perforated for a more sporty look, and it also gets aluminum brake and accelerator pedals.