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What Car? says

3 out of 5 stars

For It has a practical boot as well as powerful, frugal engines, and all models are well-equipped

Against Dull interior, firm ride and too much road noise

Verdict Unbreakable reliable family transport that's cheap to buy and run

Go for… 2.0-litre GLS

Avoid… 2.5-litre V6

Mitsubishi Galant Estate
  • 1. Alloy wheels, twin front airbags, sunroof, remote central locking alarm, cruise control and four electric windows come as standard
  • 2. Although mechanical problems are very rare, when they do occur they can be quite pricey to fix
  • 3. The automatic gearbox can cause costly problems, but because this was an option, it shouldn’t be too hard to find a manual version
  • 4. The suspension is notoriously pricey to overhaul, so make sure it’s in good order by checking for uneven tyre wear
  • 5. The braking system is the most common cause of problems, so make sure the car stops in a straight line
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Mitsubishi Galant Estate full review with expert trade views

When looking to buy an estate car, most used buyers stick to the names they trust, like Vectra, Mondeo and Passat. They might well be missing a trick, because choosing a less obvious car could pay big dividends in reliability and value for money.

With its aggressive styling, the Mitsubishi Galant certainly looks a lot different to the established crowd. It’s not bad to drive, but it’s by no means the best car of its generation – a Passat is better on almost every count. However, the Galant is much cheaper.

That said, the Galant handles reasonably well and cruises smoothly on the motorway. The only major complaint is that it rides a bit too firmly around town.

The cabin is undoubtedly a weak point, too, because of some cheap-looking materials and a shortage of space in the rear seats. However, the boot is big and practical, you get a lot of equipment for a little cash, and reliability is superb.

Trade view

Martin Keighley

Bullet-proof reliability. Ageing looks and cheap plastics inside

Martin Keighley
Valuations expert,
What Car? Used Car Price Guide

The 2.0-litre GLS is the best engine. It has a healthy 134bhp and copes well with the extra weight of the estate over the saloon. Performance is reasonable and you’ll get a competitive average fuel consumption of around 34.0mpg.

The saloon’s excellent equipment list is carried over to the estate, so you’ll get alloy wheels, twin front airbags, sunroof, remote central locking alarm, cruise control and four electric windows as standard.

The only other choice you have is the 2.5-litre V6. It’s a bit disappointing as a sporty model because it’s only a second quicker to 60mph than the 2.0-litre. That said, you don’t lose too much in the way of fuel economy, because you’ll still get 31.0mpg.

What you do gain with the V6, though, is more kit. On top of GLS trim you get air-conditioning, side airbags and a CD changer.

Trade view

John Owen

Mechanically almost unbreakable. Good accommodation and reasonable to drive

John Owen
Buyer,
Fords of Winsford

In comparison to the Vectras and Passats of the day, you’ll be quids in. Few come as cheap as the Galant, especially when you consider how much car you’ll get for how little cash.

Residual values were awful when the car was new, and while this made it unpopular, it now makes the Galant a brilliant used buy

Running costs are reasonably cheap. You’ll get roughly the same fuel economy as you’d get from the equivalent Vectra or Passat, and insurance groupings of 12 for the 2.0-litre and 14 for the V6 are also comparable.

Servicing will prove a bit costlier than it will for Vectra or Passat owners, but there’s not a lot in it. You’ll spend less time at the garage, thanks to the Galant’s bullet-proof reliability - very little is likely to go wrong.

Trade view

Martin Keighley

Bullet-proof reliability. Ageing looks and cheap plastics inside

Martin Keighley
Valuations expert,
What Car? Used Car Price Guide

Although mechanical problems are very rare, when they do occur they can be quite pricey to fix. According to data from Warranty Direct, the cost of the average repair is almost double that of the Vectra and the Passat.

Don’t worry too much, though. The Galant’s reliability record is sufficiently superior, so you’ll probably still be better off with the Galant in the long run.

The braking system is the most common cause of problems, so check it thoroughly - make sure the car stops in a straight line.

The automatic gearbox can cause an expensive problem, but because this was a cost option when the Galant was new, it shouldn’t be too hard to find a manual version. The Galant’s suspension is also notoriously pricey to overhaul, so make sure it’s in good order by checking for uneven tyre wear.

Trade view

John Owen

Mechanically almost unbreakable. Good accommodation and reasonable to drive

John Owen
Buyer,
Fords of Winsford
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