The Japan Car of the Year, the 11th COTY Award Winning Car @ Diamante

Until the 1980s, the majority of passenger cars in Japan were small numbered 5-cars. However, when the excise tax is abolished and the consumption tax is introduced, the "No. 3 car," which has an engine with a displacement of more than 2cm and a larger body, will take over as the leading role. Eventually, around 1989, when the year was changed to "Heisei", cars that broke the shell of small cars and were world-class were born one after another.

バ ブ ル At the time of the change from Showa to Heisei, the bubble economy was culminating in Japan. Van Gogh's painting was awarded the highest price in May 1990. The same was true in the automotive industry. Big-sized passenger cars, which were being developed when they were on the rise, unveiled their secret veil one after another in 1990.

三菱 Two Mitsubishi cars are the first of the number 3 cars, whose dignified appearance is eye-catching. In May, the vivid debut was the luxury personal sedan, Diamante. Six months later, in November, we launched the Sigma, a four-door sedan with a relaxed silhouette, which attracted attention.

Diamante is a stylish 4-door pillared hardtop. At the time, it inherited the dignified reverse slant two-piece grill from the popular E30 series galant. The overall length is just over 4700 mm, but the overall width is 1775 mm wide and the back is lower than the galant, so it was pushed strongly and had a sense of stability.

Sigma, which shares the mechanism, is positioned as a 4-door sedan version of Diamante. This is a 6-light window sash door, 25 mm taller than Diamante. There is plenty of headroom, and comfort and elegance go one step further.

The engine is a 4-valve V-type 6 cylinder, which is called by the nickname "Cyclone". All were ECI specifications of the electronically controlled fuel injection system. The bottom 2ℓ engine was SOHC, and the advanced 2.5ℓ and 3ℓ engines were DOHC. The transmission combines an electronically controlled [ELT] 4-speed AT with a hold mode. Although a small number, 5-speed MT cars were also available.

エ ン ジ ン The front layout is driven by a horizontal layout engine, and a center differential full-time 4WD with a viscous coupling based on this is also available. At that time, the upper-middle class with a 6-cylinder engine was the mainstream in the rear-wheel drive FR, but Diamante quickly adopted the FF system of the horizontal engine to obtain a comfortable space and sophisticated driving ing.

Suspensions and safety equipment were also at the forefront of the times. The suspension has struts on the front, multilinks on the FF on the rear, and double wishbones on the 4WD. In addition to the active ECS electronically controlled suspension, it is also equipped with a vehicle speed / steering force sensitive type 4WS [four-wheel steering system] and anti-lock brake 4ABS. Mitsubishi names the system that controls these components the "active footwork system."

Also packed with high-tech control technology. Examples include traction control [TCL], which includes the functions of trace control and slip control, and MICS, an intelligent cockpit system. The company is taking a serious attitude toward collision safety, such as incorporating a side door beam at the same time as the launch of Sigma.

This year, many cars with new senses and new values ​​were announced and attracted attention. In addition to Diamante and Sigma, Mitsubishi has moved to a new era 4WD sports car, the GTO, and Honda has put Japan's first full-fledged midship sports car, the NSX, into the market. The NSX is equipped with a DOHC / VTEC engine that is exceptionally high performance and is mounted behind the all-aluminum body, achieving outstanding footwork and accurate handling.

Mazda also has many ambitious products, and the highlight is the world's first Eunos Cosmo equipped with a GPS navigation system and a three-rotor 20B type rotary engine. The company has also launched reviews of casual sedans. In addition, Isuzu Motors also sent in individual Gemini coupe.

Nissan has shifted the release of Primera, which shows a different dimension of running. It is a family car of the FF system that has been reviewed from packaging and thoroughly pursued functions. In addition, his brother's pulsar has also made his debut.注目 Toyota's featured model is Estima, which pioneered the minivan. Received a special award for a groundbreaking layout of an underfloor midship minivan.

Under these circumstances, the Car of the Year became a fierce battle, and although it was said that NSX had an advantage in the lower horse reviews, Diamante and Sigma eventually won. The adoption of the ideal body size of the standard car frame and the active introduction of advanced technology were highly evaluated.

Diamante has made a big hit in the wake of the bubble economy and has become a famous car that is handed down to future generations. Achievements that set a benchmark for this class, which cannot be overlooked.

The generous size of the body, which is 1775 mm wide, gives a sense of luxury. The center of the lineup is vehicles with 2.5ℓ and 3ℓ V6 engines. A 21 V6 engine-equipped car was also available in only one grade, but the body was common and all cars had three numbers. The body designed without being constrained by the 5-number size shows a relaxed form.

The sibling's Sigma, which debuted about six months later, has a sedan body. The design of the headlights and tail lens is slightly different, but the basic components are common. The grade composition was similar.

Luxurious interior with plenty of wood grain panels and genuine leather in the upper grade.

A round cockpit design that wraps around the owner and partner. For grades of 25V or higher, wood grain panels are used extensively, such as instrument panels, trim panels, and center consoles, to create a sense of quality.

The front suspension is a strut for all models, the rear of the 2WD model is multi-link, and the 4WD model is a double wishbone. 4WS equipped vehicles were also set.

The 2.5-liter V6 engine that uses an electronically controlled variable intake system plays a central role in the series. The upper grade is equipped with a 3ℓ V6 engine.

Toyota Estima appeared as a new concept saloon. An epoch-making model that has established new values ​​for minivans. Received the COTY Special Award of the same year.

This year, Honda NSX also appeared as a world-class sports car. Despite a lot of talk and a good reputation, COTY was crowned Diamante.

Published: Hachimaru Hero May 2013 vol.21 [All the contents in the article are those at the time of publication]
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