1 Aug 2010
MITSUBISHI pitched its all-new sub-Outlander baby SUV neatly between its two most direct rivals, the Nissan Dualis and Hyundai’s ix35.
All ASX models came with no fewer than seven airbags – twin front, front-side, side curtain and a segment-first driver’s knee airbag – while ASC electronic stability control, ATC traction control and ABS brakes (multi-mode for AWD versions) with EBD are also fitted across the range.
Unlike the Outlander, a hill-start assist function came with both automatic and manual transmissions. All ASX models achieved a maximum five-star safety ratingOpening the ASX range was the 2WD petrol manual, powered by the Lancer’s MIVEC 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine, which delivered 110kW of power at 6000rpm and 197Nm of torque at 4200rpm.
Mated to a five-speed manual transmission, the base ASX returned average fuel consumption of 7.7 litres per 100km Matched with the Lancer’s six-speed continuously variable transmission (CVT), which was a $2500 option, the ASX petrol auto returned 7.9L/100km, while the $31,990 ASX 4WD petrol was a CVT-only proposition that returned 8.1L/100km.
More economical than all petrol variants was the AWD-only, six-speed manual-only ASX 4WD diesel, which returned Toyota Camry Hybrid-beating fuel consumption of just 5.8L/100km.
Under the diesel ASX’s bonnet was the first application of Mitsubishi’s own 1.8-litre DiD four-cylinder intercooled turbo-diesel engine, which delivered the same 110kW as the petrol engine (this time at 4000rpm) and a more muscular 300Nm of torque at 2000rpm – up 103Nm.
Offering light-car economy in an AWD SUV (Mitsubishi’s contemporary Colt returned 5.6L/100km), the ASX diesel emitted just 154 grams of CO2 per kilometre – less than diesel version of the ix35 and Tiguan, easily making it the cleanest and most efficient in its class.
Apart from the full gamut of safety equipment, standard features across the range included 16x6.5-inch alloy wheels with 215/65 tyres, roof rails, automatic climate-control air-conditioning, cruise control, a trip computer, rake- and reach-adjustable steering wheel, a four-speaker AM/FM/CD/MP3 player with auxiliary and USB inputs, driver’s seat height adjustment and power windows/mirrors.
Top-shelf ‘Aspire’ AWD variants of the diesel manual and petrol CVT jointly topped the range, and added 17x6.5-inch alloys with 215/60 tyres, leather seat trim, power driver’s seat adjustment, heated front seats, Smart Key keyless starting, automatic headlights, a nine-speaker Rockford Fosgate sound system, rear armrest with cup-holders, Bluetooth phone connectivity and the Mitsubishi Multi Communication System (MMCS).
The latter included satellite-navigation, privacy glass, a chrome grille and side window surrounds, reversing camera, iPod connection cable, video input function and steering wheel gearshift paddles (petrol CVT only). Both Aspire models came with the option of a panoramic sunroof.
When it was new