Monday, May 4, 2015

2015 Mitsubishi Pajero

The Mitsubishi Pajero defies its age by selling strongly, largely due to its reputation for reliability.A mild makeover for the 2015 models is accompanied by price cuts of up to $8000 on the range-topping Exceed.By any measure the big four-by-four is an old car — the basics have been around since 1999 — that's had more plumping than Kim Kardashian's butt.

In Exceed guise there are some luxury touches to soften the impact of a car designed to head off-road and/or lug a decent caravan. At $66,000 there'd want to be — the new Nissan Pathfinder tops out at $65K and there's a Range Rover Discovery at $69,330 though the Toyota Prado raises the bar considerably at $84,500.The slab-sided Pajero doesn't lack for interior space in most dimensions. Rear occupants are fine but the driver's perch is narrow, with little room between the non-adjustable steering wheel and the door.

Switchgear is standard Mitsubishi fare and not even chrome highlights can brighten the staid interior. The touchscreen with satnav looks aftermarket rather than an integral part of the dash.The fold-flat third row seats are a kids-only environment but there is a full-size spare wheel hanging off the side-opening tailgate.Glossy wood inserts (natural and matt veneer finishes are in vogue among the Europeans) in the dash and steering wheel look conservative against the alloy and faux fibre highlights found in newer rivals but the interior feels robust enough to resist squeaking when the suspension and chassis is being torsioned and twisted off-road.

A four-cylinder diesel is never going to make nearly 2.5 tonnes get a move on and that's how the Pajero rolls. From rest to 100km/h takes somewhere north of 10 seconds. Time off the line is more impressive as peak torque, available from 2000rpm, arrives in the first couple of metres to power the SUV across intersections.