The Modest Mountaineer



 

 

 

 

 

Special Feature: The Attrage shows that a compact sedan can co-exist with a sporty lifestyle

SINGAPORE – 
Compact sedans are very popular and for good reason. They’re typically some of the most affordable cars around, they’re light and small, thus easy to maneuver or park and are usually very fuel-efficient.

But the common idea goes: If you need to move around anything large, tall or bulky, a sports utility vehicle (SUV), multi-purpose vehicle (MPV) or hatchback is better suited to the task since these kinds of vehicles usually have taller boots with larger loading apertures.  

Yet, there are a number of convincing reasons why someone might not want a car like that. Besides cost factors for one, you simply might not like the boxier shape of a hatch, or it could be that you’ve simply set your heart on owning a sedan.

Besides playing car boot ‘Tetris’ or taking out a hacksaw in frustration, what happens if you own – or are looking to own – a compact car while still requiring that much needed space for your gear? Simple: You look at something like the Mitsubishi Attrage, which is here to prove that compact needn’t mean compromising on space, as seen in another feature with pro photographer Peter Lee.

To prove that, we had to pair the newly-facelifted Mitsubishi Attrage 1.2 with somebody whose ‘life space’ requirements were a little extra-ordinary and we found the perfect match in this guy:

Walton Seah, aged 32, owner of AttitudeBikes Pte Ltd, has been in the competitive cycling game for about 18 years, so he was the perfect person to put the Attrage’s interior to the dreaded mountain bike test.

It sounds like an erm, mountainous task, fitting something like that into a compact sedan. But little did we know, it doesn’t take much to find the ideal storage position – at least with the Attrage – and Walton could not have been a more comprehensive guide on how to do it properly and with the least negative effects on either car or bicycle.

First things first, removing the rear and front wheels with the quick release axle was top on the list. The bike is then turned upside down – to avoid any contact between the metal frame and seats – and to prevent damage to the Attrage’s standard leather interior (which is quite a bonus on a compact car). Walton demonstrates the usefulness of having a cloth at the ready to ensure least amount of contact between the car and bike.

Pros like Walton demand the best, so it’s no surprise he’s invested quite a bit into his bicycle, so keeping it in the best condition possible is paramount.  

“Securing the bike on an external roof rack, a boot-mounted rack or even placing in the boot itself tends to leave scratches and dents on the car ever so often. In fact, with the right position in the Attrage, I’m confident at least two bikes can fit in the rear seats.” Walton adds.

While the Attrage has been tested and proven to be highly practical, we feel it’s safe to say that the sedan has ticked pretty much all the boxes in other areas too. For such a small car, it has an amazing amount of room on the inside – the tall roof, for example, delivers plenty of headroom (take that hatchbacks!) and the rear legroom is also equally generous, so five adults can fit comfortably, proving that the Attrage punches way above its size when it comes to value.

The efficient 1.2-litre three-cylinder engine delivers 20.8km/L, so it’s a top-dog when it comes to fuel-efficiency. In fact Mitsubishi recently did a drive to Kuala Lumpur and bettered that figure, at 26.3km/L, so it’ll deliver great mileage in real world conditions too. At a price of $79,999* with COE with it’s also affordable, is easy to park and most importantly, easy to handle on the road. With a maximum percent loan amount, 2.58 percent interest, and a seven-year loan period, that amounts to just $787 a month.

“In all honesty, a car like the Attrage would be good for me. For what it’s worth, you get a whole lot out of what you’re paying for,” says Walton. In Singapore, it’s not many of us can afford the car of our dreams, but the Attrage proves that something which can support your other passions is affordable, at least.  

*Valid as of October 2016

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