Road tests 18.7.2018 03:39 pm

DRIVEN: Affordable Mitsubishi ASX is suitable for urban use

Panoramic sunroof is standard and there is plenty of headroom in the first two rows.

The Mitsubishi ASX has basically remained unchanged since its local launch in 2011.

It has, during the past few years, undergone slight refreshments that saw the introduction of updated infotainment technology and a handful of electronic driver-assistance aids.

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For the 2018 model, the Japanese carmaker has introduced an additional derivative dubbed the 2.0 four-cylinder MIVEC six-speed CVT with 110kW and 197Nm.

I recently spent some time putting it through its paces.

I struggled to find what has changed. But, changes there are. Mitsubishi say the ASX is the first South African model to feature their new Dynamic Shield design language, which is also seen on models such as the Outlander and Pajero Sport.

On the outside, there is a new front grille finished in chrome and a bumper that features a honeycomb pattern, plus daytime running lights above the spoiler.

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The rear bumper has also been tweaked and now features some carbon-fibre inserts.

The inside remains unchanged and our test unit came fitted with comfortable heated leather seats.

There is a bit of a plastic feel on the dash.

You get Bluetooth with voice control, cruise control, a multi-function steering wheel, electric windows, air conditioning, rain-sensing wipers, rear-park distance control, plus automatic lights.

The touchscreen infotainment system felt a bit outdated yet functioned very well. A panoramic glass roof is fitted as standard.

That is just about all that has changed.

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The ASX provides plenty of head room in both the first and second row of seats.

You get a generous 442 litres of boot space and can fold down the rear seats, increasing it to 1 193 litres. It is a comfortable car, but can be a bit gutless when tackling hills, especially with three or four adults inside.

The engine and the CVT would struggle to keep pace in demanding terrain and it is worse when you pull away on hills as the engine gets incredibly noisy.

In terms of safety, the ASX boasts a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating, EBD, BAS and ABS systems.

There are seven airbags to back those up, including Isofix child-restraint mountings.

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During the week of evaluation, I managed to average 6.9l/100km from its 63 litre fuel tank.

To conclude, the ASX may not find favour with a lot of buyers but it makes a better choice for inner-urban use than open road touring.

For a price of R399 995 it does not set the standard in the SUV segment.

Nonetheless it, brings with it a host of standard features and competitive pricing which should help sway a few more buyers.

It is an SUV worth considering when you look at the whole package.

This car offers everything a family could want in safety and space.

The GLS CVT is covered by a three-year/100 000km manufacturer’s warranty and a fiveyear/90 000km service plan with 15 000km service intervals.

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