Mitsubishi ASX - Moving up the value chain

By THOMAS HUONG | 18 February 2016

The locally assembled Mitsubishi ASX mid-sized sport utility vehicle (SUV) has been a hit among Malaysian motorists.

Assembled at the Segambut plant of Tan Chong Motor Assemblies, the ASX is a well-packaged car with nice comfort and safety features, even for the more affordable two wheel-drive variants.

It was designed for those who want a car with higher ride height, as well as the comfort and maneuvrability of a sedan.

Mitsubishi ASX - 02-1Late last year, Mitsubishi Motors Malaysia introduced its most affordable ASX variant, namely the 2WD GL at RM104,791.87 on-the-road without insurance.

At the same time, the ASX range was also enhanced with features like daytime running lights, rear reclining seats and a shark fin antenna.

Our test drive unit is the top-of-the-range ASX 4WD which has seven airbags and two-toned 17-inch alloy rims.

It’s also in a new colour - Sporty Blue.

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The ASX comes in three variants, and the top two variants get a few extras like a touch screen display, GPS navigation, front parking sensors and a reverse camera.

One reason the ASX is a hit among car buyers is its high equipment level.

Standard kit for all three ASX variants include leather seats, keyless entry, rain sensing Wipers, automatic air conditioning, a CD audio system with MP3, AUX, USB and VAPS (Virtual Acoustic Positioning System) which provides surround sound stage experience, steering wheel audio control, coloured multi-info display and powered adjustable folding side mirrors.

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With the base ASX variant priced below RM105,000 on-the-road, it provides plenty of bang for the buck.

In terms of standing out on the road, this is where the ASX is designed well.

We think it has sporty lines, and a dynamic-looking honeycomb grille that has a timeless athletic style.

Inside the ASX, the black-themed cabin is comfortable and the materials don’t look cheap.

Drivers will like the tilt and telescopic steering, which also has integrated audio and cruise control switches.

The 4WD (four-wheel-drive) button is conveniently located between the front seats, and you can push it when you want more traction on slippery roads.

However, urban drivers will probably never need to push this button except perhaps on badly flooded and muddy terrain.

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For more natural light in the cabin, or to get a better view of that stylish skyscraper, just retract the sunshade, and you get a full glass panoramic sunroof.

There is a lot of grunt from the 2.0-litre 16-valve DOHC MIVEC ((Mitsubishi Innovative Valve timing Electronic Control) engine, which is also found in the Mitsubishi Lancer GTE.

The INVECS-III CVT (continuous variable transmission) with Sports Mode, is said to have been enhanced for better acceleration response and fuel economy.

We certainly had no complaints about acceleration response, and the ASX has a 1,475kg kerb weight.

While the ASX has a fuel efficiency rating of 13.2km per litre, we did not achieve this as we are quite heavy-footed drivers.

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It has a front MacPherson strut, and a multi-link rear suspension which help to provide a ride quality that is on the soft side, and absorbs road imperfections rather well.

The ASX has a respectable 2,670mm wheelbase and we did not find cabin leg room to be lacking.

The ASX felt agile and the powered rack and pinion steering was not heavy, and it has a class-leading turning radius of 5.3 meters.

We think the ASX ticks all the right boxes for those looking for a value-for-money SUV.

With the enhancements, it continues to offer a very attractive package in the RM105,000 to RM125,000 SUV price segment.




CarSifu's Rating: 7.4