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jmsteiny-thanks for bringing this topic up. Quite interesting. From my own experience, I now own a 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS. I am frankly very impressed with this car and Mitsubishi as a whole operation corporation. I may buy another Mitsubishi...the chances are very good for that.

However, I have recently fallen for another Japanese automobile called a Suzuki Kizashi. This car is a FWD, 2.4L 4-cyl, 185hp car that comes with either a 6-speed manual transmission or a CVT automatic. I have the CVT automatic in my '08 Lancer GTS and it works like a champ.

However, my last two cars before the '08 Lancer GTS were both sticks. I miss da stick. More than I thought.

I have read reviews of the 2010 Suzuki Kizashi 6-speed FWD and on respected automobile marketing site Edmunds.com the car is pulling a 9.4 out of a possible 10.0 rating right now. One guy says his Kizashi manual tranny shifts better than his Audi A3's manual tranny does.


2010 Suzuki Kizashi

The Suzuki Kizashi GTS has a sunroof, 425-watt Rockford Fosgate 10-speaker with subwoofer stereo, foglights, 10-way adjustable driver's seat and so on. It is very similarly equipped as my wife and I's 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS. Priced about $23,400. Which is about a grand more than we spent on our '08 Lancer GTS in early 2007. And the Kizashi is considered a midsize sedan, though smallishly so. Our Lancer GTS is a compact, by comparison.

Thing is, we have about 49,000 miles on our Lancer GTS and there's no reason to trade in. Plus, we both love our Lancer GTS. I'm just a car nut, though, and want another car to play in!

So, as to your question, I find it fascinating that the Japanese industry is apparently under review. Let's face it, it is under review. And from what I see, my current fave Mitsubishi and even Suzuki, which are both close to disappearing from the U.S. market, are both good and solid automakers with no reason whatsoever to disappear.

Mitsubishi offers a 10 year and 100,000 mile powertrain Warranty. Suzuki offers a 7 year and 100,000 mile powertrain Warranty. Both are excellent Warranties.

Both automakers price their cars fairly, in my opinion, too.
 

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I know this is hellishly off-topic, but the reviews I have read on the 2010 Suzuki Kizashi say the car is a game-breaker for Suzuki. Very stylish and soft interior surfaces, great handling and hold to the road effect while mashing through the twisties, good fit and finish, good pick-up from the 185 horse 2.4L 4, etc. Great RF stereo to enjoy, I think Suzuki might very well have studied the new world order Mitsubishi Lancer GTS when styling their 2010 Suzuki Kizashi GTS. Very similar GTS standard features.

I think the $23,344 6-speed '10 Suzuki Kizashi GTS price is very competitive as well. I've basically put the car on our(umm...my)2-3 look-ahead watchdog list for futures purchases.

If a nasty Kizashi recall comes out I'll follow it like a Kansas Jayhawk and research how Suzuki treats it's customers. I have mucho time to do dis as our '08 Lancer GTS is lightly-miled at only 49,003 miles. Maintaining this pup as I do all our rigs...every maintenance detail carried out fully completely. No skipped steps.

The guy or gal who buys our trade-in will get themself a very, very nice and fresh rig to drive for many, many years.

Which is probably what I should just do with my '08 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS. Sit down, shut up and drive.
 

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Yeah, the "drive-by wire" issue is still under review AFAIK. I think this is a horrible time for Toyota owners and Toyota Motor Company. But they'll get through it-in the meantime, though, there's going to be a lot of rough water to navigate.

Hard to predict a thing like stock share-but they'll weather this thing.
 

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Perception, perception, perception........unfortunately, this is far from over for Toyota.

Well put, jmsteiny. This is almost ironic regarding my own trends of late. I bought a 1999 Kia Sephia in May of '99. The car was somewhat rudimentary, 5-speeds, no stereo or A/C. But I loved the small sedan. It showed me what the Koreans were capable of and I had a strong feeling they'd improve with time. A lot of my workmates ridiculed my decision to buy a Kia Sephia. Well, my wife and I traded our '99 Sephia in on a 2001 Kia Sportage 4X4 in Sept.2001. It was a very strong little SUV for us for 6 years.

Traded the Sportage 4X4 in on a 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS in March of 2007 and we've had the Lancer GTS since then. Hard to believe it's been almost 3 years now with the Lancer. My point is that the South Koreans are doing so well and getting so good and they're not going away. They are going to only increase market share worldwide, because their cars are good. Really competitive and really good vehicles.

But, another point I want to make. For so long so many Americans have been "on board" with buying Japanese rigs. I've gone another route and bought South Korean from 1999 to 2007.

Now, I'm finally buying Japanese rigs and the cars I am watching for future possibilities are Japanese...the 2010 Suzuki Kizashi and the future Mitsubishi Lancer GTS Hybrid and 2011 Mitsubishi i-MiEV and PX-MiEV SUV. It took me a while to buy Japanese but now that's all I'm interested in.


Mitsubishi PX-MiEV SUV concept

Almost. I luv the 2011 Kia Sportage SUV and I love the Kia Forte. I wouldn't mind getting a Kia Forte LPG Hybrid, either. But it's gonna be our '08 Lancer GTS for quite some time and then eventually a new Suzuki Kizashi or Mitsubishi Lancer Hybrid or Mitsubishi PX-MiEV SUV.

So Honda, Subara, Nissan and Toyota are not even remotely on my radar for purchasing with their current offerings. I think this mess is only going to get worse for Toyota and their current struggles are really hurting my view of their ability to deliver a safe and reliable product.

My main interests automotively now, though, are with Mitsubishi and Suzuki, two "small" Japanese car makers struggling to stay in the NA market. And I love Kia, the 2nd biggest Korean carmaker, which is only growing market share in the U.S.

So, Toyota's struggles don't really reach me in a personal way. I do see very vividly that they're struggling and they appear to be in automotive quicksand right now.
 

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TonyJZX-yep, that is why I posted the post above. I didn't mention the word perception in my post, but that is what I was getting at. I like Mitsubishi for their rock-solid powertrains, but, what attracted me to our 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS is those looks.

Something about the "jet-fighter inspired" look when I look straight-on at the vehicle from the front that does it to me every time. As I was cruising around our little SE Arizona cowboy town yesterday I thought to myself "you're not gonna trade your Lancer GTS in for a 2010 Suzuki Kizashi!"

I love my '08 Lancer GTS too much. I love it's feel and effect on I-10 and any twistie I can find to drive it on. It handles like a much more expensive sport sedan. Love the car.

But you're right on about perception. After driving our '99 Kia Sephia on it's new Yokohama 70,000 mile radials and it's new Konig Diva wheels in 2001 I realized that the car just needed some decent tread. It made all the difference in the world as to the car's ability to handle and drive more effectively. We traded the car in for another Kia because I wanted a different Kia to play with, not because we didn't like the small South Korean-built sedan.
 
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