In 1988, a more aerodynamic-looking Lancer was launched, following the shape of the Galant. A five-door liftback was added to the range. The station wagon continued on the old platform and shape. In Japan, sedans and hatchbacks were available with either the Lancer or the Mirage nameplate, while hatchbacks were only sold as Mirages and liftbacks only as Lancers. In Australia, where the 1978 Mirage/Lancer Fiore was still produced as the Colt, all models of the new car were sold as the Mitsubishi Lancer, initially designated as the CA series and from 1990 as the CB. In Europe, four- and five-door versions were all called Lancer. Engines available in the European market ranged from the 65 hp 1.2-litre 4G16 (Greece only) to a 136 hp 1.8-litre 16-valve, and included a 1.8-litre diesel.
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In Japan, four-wheel-drive versions were also available, fitted with a carburetted 1.5-liter, fuel-injected 1.6-liter 16-valve, or with the 1.8 diesel. A GSR model with a fuel-injected 1.6-litre turbocharged engine was also produced.
The CA/CB series five-door liftback version continued to be sold in Australia alongside the sixth generation (CC) Lancer from 1992 through to 1996. Confusingly, the carry-over liftback sold after 1992 was also given the "CC" model designation, as utilized by the subsequent model.
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