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By Jim Flammang
November 21, 2005
Vehicle Overview Redesigned for 2004, Mitsubishi's Galant was appreciably larger than its predecessor and featured notably different styling. The front-wheel-drive sedan received a full makeover, and interior dimensions grew: Front shoulder room tops 57 inches, and rear legroom measures 37 inches.
In addition to the base DE trim level, Mitsubishi offers high-volume ES, luxury LS and sporty GTS editions. Side-impact airbags for the front seats became standard on 2005 models, and the LS edition gained a power driver's seat with lumbar support. Interior enhancements, including bright gauge accents and a multifunction computer, are notable changes for the 2006 model year.
Exterior The current Galant has a more rigid platform than its predecessor. Built on a 108.3-inch wheelbase and riding standard 16-inch tires, the sedan is 190.4 inches long overall and 72.4 inches wide. Track widths approach 62 inches.
Styling features include an angular nose, center grille pillar and a high rear deck. In addition to 17-inch alloy wheels, the sporty GTS sedan gets large stabilizer bars, four-bulb projector headlights, parabolic fog lights and a mesh sport grille.
Interior Up to five people can fit inside the Galant. The dashboard angles downward, and a three-ring instrument panel sits in a hooded compartment and has blue illumination. Trunk space totals 13.3 cubic feet.
Standard DE equipment includes a four-speed-automatic transmission, keyless entry, a 140-watt CD audio system, and power windows, locks and mirrors. The ES adds cruise control, upgraded lighting and premium cloth upholstery. The V-6-powered LS includes a four-speed Sportronic automatic transmission with a manual-shift provision, traction control and an eight-way power driver's seat. The GTS features a leather-trimmed interior, a 270-watt Infinity audio system and automatic climate control.
Under the Hood In DE and ES models, a 2.4-liter four-cylinder produces 160 horsepower and 157 pounds-feet of torque. LS and GTS sedans use a 3.8-liter V-6 that pumps out 230 hp and 250 pounds-feet of torque. Both engines drive a four-speed-automatic transmission, but the V-6's features a manual-shift provision.
Safety Side-impact airbags for the front seats are installed in all Galants. Antilock brakes with electronic brake-force distribution are standard on all models but the DE, for which ABS is not offered.
Driving Impressions Mitsubishi's midsize Galant is an appealing and capable touring sedan. Acceleration with the V-6 is energetic from a standstill, and it responds eagerly when passing. Abruptness seldom occurs with the automatic transmission.
Even though the GTS's suspension is undeniably taut, it absorbs enough imperfections to take the edge off and even cushions a fair amount of harshness. Steering effort feels about right, but it isn't as precise as it could be.
Steering and handling characteristics vary with the model. The LS's lighter steering seems more appropriate, and it rides more gently than the GTS.
The seats are firm and supportive. They're not exactly inviting, but are satisfying for a long haul. Rear legroom is great, but headroom isn't as good. The center rear occupant gets a hard perch with virtually no headroom. Thick B-pillars impair visibility over the left shoulder.