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Mitsubishi Pajero VRX review

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    The Mitsubishi Pajero VRX's styling seems to have been toned down with flusher fitting flares.

Chris Riley road tests and reviews the new Mitsubishi Pajero VRX with specs, fuel economy and verdict.

Mitsubishi's Pajero offroader needs no introduction. It's still a family favourite and a steady seller for Mitsubishi, even if it is a bit long in the tooth. And the Pajero still offers excellent value for money, if you're looking for a seven seat wagon with some real off road potential.

RANGE AND PRICE

Pajero comes in three flavours GLX, GLX-R, VRX and Exceed. All but the entry level GLX offers seven seats, with a third row that packs into the floor when not in use. Priced from $50,990, the Pajero comes as a diesel only these days. The VRX is priced from $63,990 and includes a five-speed auto with manual shift mode as standard. It's the one you want if you're not interested in wood or leather trim (overrated in our opinion).

ENGINE

The 3.2-litre turbo diesel produces 147kW of power at 3800 revs and 441Nm of torque at 2000 revs -- and has a 3-tonne tow capacity. It's a full-time four wheel drive system with a rear diff lock, but you can select two-wheel drive for day to day motoring which will deliver better fuel economy.  With an 88-litre tank it is good for 9.0 litres/100km (we were getting 7.6 litres/100km).

DESIGN

The styling seems to have been toned down with flusher fitting flares. That's a good thing because it always seemed a little over the top. The VRX rides on 18 inch wheels with cruise, climate air with front and rear controls, automatic light and wipers, as well as heated front seats with power adjustment for both the driver and front passenger.

SAFETY

With six airbags and a full complement of safety systems the Pajero receives a full five stars for crash safety. It gets Active Stability Control (ASC), Active Traction Control (ATC) and Multi-mode Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD). A reversing camera is also standard and the VRX adds rear parking sensors.

DRIVING

It's not as big or cumbersome as we remember, but it lacks the refinement of more recent competitors. Nor does it exude the premium feel that we associate with older models -- although it's not disappointing. For a big wagon it is suprisingly easy to navigate around town and can hold its own in traffic. The switch to diesel only is to be applauded, although some returning buyers might be disappointed.

In terms of offroad ability the Pajero is a medium duty wagon with 225mm of ground clearance and a wading depth of 700mm. VRX scores Mitsubishi's Multi Communication System (MMS) systems with a 7 inch touchscreen display and 3D navigation mapping with SD Card input. Bluetooth with audio streaming is standard and can be voice controlled. A separate trip computer above the touchscreen offers a compass, altimeter and barometer.

VERDICT

We've still got a soft spot for the Pajero. If you're looking for a seven seat wagon and want to go offroad you could do a lot worse (and end up paying a lot more too).

Mitsubishi Pajero VRX
Price: from $63,990
Warranty: 5-speed auto, 4WD
Engine: 3.2-litre 4-cylinder, 147kW/441Nm
Transmission: 5-speed auto, 4WD
Thirst: 9.0L/100Km, CO2 239g/km

RIVALS

Land Rover Discovery - see other verdicts

Price: from $68,545 (4 TDV6)

Engine: 3.0-litre V6 bi-turbo diesel, 155kW/520Nm

Transmission: 8-speed auto, 2-speed transfer, 4WD

Thirst: 8.5L/100km


Jeep Grand Cherokee - see other verdicts

Price: from $71,000 (Overland)

Engine: 3.0-litre V6 turbo diesel, 184kW/570Nm

Transmission: 8-speed auto, 4WD

Thirst: 7.5L/100km

Toyota Prado- see other verdicts

Price: from $55,990 (GX)

Engine: 3.0-litre 4-cylinder turbo diesel, 127kW/410Nm

Transmission: 6-speed manual, 4WD

Thirst: 8.8L/100km

Comments on this story

Displaying 3 of 3 comments

  • I have read many pajero reviews,  none really cover the off road ability of this vehicle.  I have reasonable experience in off road in manual vehicles,  however the majority of pajero buyers are going to get the auto.  No real crawl ability down hill,  the transfer case has 4 different positions,  yet the manual (in the glove box),  doesn’t really explain much at all.  I have bought a GLXR auto,  very happy with the drive and towing ability,  love it in fact.  But some ideas as to off road would be appreciated.

    Niall KING of bendigo Posted on 25 March 2014 10:16pm
  • nice post…....the review is really good will now help me to make mindset to buy my new .

    Amy O Patton Posted on 02 January 2014 7:15pm
  • I was looking for a review of the Pajero and all I read here is an ad for it with no additional information here than I can find in a brochure from the manufacturer. Carsguide my ring! How about you actually drive it and talk about what you find, better yet how about you pack one up the family in it and see how it is for a family weekend. Nothing like paid editorial to fund your website and waste the time of those actually interested in your useless info.

    A Duffy of Canberra Posted on 15 December 2013 7:25am

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