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Mitsubishi Triton GLX-R 2020: off-road review

The Mitsubishi Triton GLX-R dual-cab is a new Triton variant, which fits above the GLX+ and below the GLS in the ute’s nine-strong dual-cab line-up.

The GLX-R gets alloy wheels, fog lamps, a silver grille, chrome bumper edging, and chrome door mirrors and handles.

In the past we’ve liked the Triton as a great value-for-money ute, but is the GLX-R worth your time and money? Read on.

Does it represent good value for the price? What features does it come with?

The GLX-R dual-cab has a 2.4-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine, a six-speed automatic transmission (with sports mode) and a dual-range transfer case (high- and low-range). It’s also available with a six-speed manual gearbox.

Standard features include leather trimmed shifter and steering wheel, 18-inch alloy wheels, 7.0-inch touchscreen media unit (with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay), plenty of chrome (door mirror and handles), as well as side steps, rear view camera, rear parking sensors, and rear step bumper step.

The GLX-R wears 18-inch alloy wheels. The GLX-R wears 18-inch alloy wheels.

In terms of driver-assist/safety tech it gets 'Forward Collision Mitigation' with pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, stability and traction controls, 'Trailer Stability Assist', hill start assist, auto headlights and rain-sensing wipers.

As tested, this Triton costs $45,230 ($44,490 MSRP plus $740 for the 'Lightning Blue' paint), but there are drive-away deals – $43,230 (incl cost of paint) – so take your time and do your research.

Is there anything interesting about its design?

Styling is subjective and not a lot actually separates contemporary utes in terms of their appearance anyway, so make your own mind about its appearance.

The Mitsubishi Triton GLX-R dual-cab is a new Triton variant, which fits above the GLX+ and below the GLS. The Mitsubishi Triton GLX-R dual-cab is a new Triton variant, which fits above the GLX+ and below the GLS.

The Triton is a pretty good looking unit, I reckon. Admittedly, when the ‘dynamic shield’ front end was introduced to the line-up’s design in recent years, it took me little bit of time to get used to it – but I’m okay with it now.

What are the key stats for the engine and transmission?

As mentioned, the Triton has a 2.4-litre, four-cylinder, turbo-diesel engine – producing 133kW at 3500rpm and 430Nm at 2500rpm – and it has a six-speed automatic transmission.

It’s a solid combination and well-proven in the Triton. There’s a dial to the rear of the shifter which enables the driver to switch from 2H (two-wheel drive), 4H (4WD high-range) and 4L (4WD low-range).

The 2.4-litre turbo-diesel makes 133kW/430Nm. The 2.4-litre turbo-diesel makes 133kW/430Nm.

The GLX-R does, however, miss out on Mitsubishi’s impressive 'Super Select II' 4WD system and it does not have a rear diff lock.

How practical is the space inside?

A Triton cabin, no matter the spec, is usually an easy space in which to spend loads of time, even though it feels more snug than roomy. 

The seats are firm but supportive, although a taller colleague has consistently whinged about short driver and front-passenger seat bases. 

The interior is a nice balance of form and function. The interior is a nice balance of form and function.

The rear seat is better suited to a two-person combo than three.

The interior is generally easy on the eye, well laid-out, and everything is easy to swiftly locate and operate. The interior is a nice balance of form and function.

The 7.0-inch touchscreen could be bigger, but it is clear and bright enough to avoid any serious issues while using it.

The 7.0-inch touchscreen features Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The 7.0-inch touchscreen features Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

Storage spaces include glove box, two cupholders up front, centre console with storage box and lid, moulded door pockets with bottle holders. 

For back seat passengers, there are seat-back pockets, bottle holders in the doors and a fold-down centre armrest with two cupholders. There’s also a roof-mounted air vent.

There are two USB ports up front and two for those in the back seat. 

The rear seat is better suited to a two-person combo than three. The rear seat is better suited to a two-person combo than three.

What's it like as a daily driver?

It’s quiet and comfortable – even in a market dominated by car-like utes – and handles a full day-to-day schedule of general duties (think ferrying family members around town, carting work tools, and taking your dogs to the beach) with ease.

The Triton is nice to drive: it feels nimble around town and it has a willing engine, smooth-shifting auto and healthy acceleration, even though it exhibits more than a touch of gruff and grumble when you ask a lot of it. 

Steering is generally well-weighted, but rougher road and track surfaces can force some jitters into the steering wheel.

The suspension set-up is double wishbone, coil springs and stabiliser bar at the front and leaf springs at the rear. Unladen, the Triton is not as skippy as you might expect but it’s still a ute. It rides on 18-inch Bridgestone Dueler H/T tyres (265/60R18).

Ride in general tends towards the harsher side of the rough-to-comfortable spectrum, but otherwise it’s fine. 

What's it like for touring?

The GLX-R does not have Mitsubishi's Super Select II 4X4 system or selectable off-road modes. Both of those are in the higher-spec GLS and GSR variants. But this ute is still quite capable off-road.

Its easy-select 4WD system works via a dial to the rear of the auto shifter, offering 2WD and 4WD high- and low-range modes. You are able to switch between 2WD and 4WD while on the move at speeds under 100km/h.

The 4WD system, as is, worked well during dirt-track driving in high-range and a sustained bout of low-range soft-sand driving on this test,  with tyre pressures dropped to 20psi, of course.

Ground clearance is listed as 220mm; wading depth is 500mm. We were never in danger of bellying out on the sand, but we never had the opportunity to fully test its wading depth.

All round, the Triton is pretty effective off-road. All round, the Triton is pretty effective off-road.

While its departure angle remains shallow at 23 degrees, its approach (31) and ramp break-over (25) are decent. It does have some heavy-duty underbody protection to cop any nudges if you do happen to ‘touch earth’ with your Triton’s undercarriage.

All round, it's pretty effective off-road, torquey and nimble, but it never feels as controlled as something like the Ford Ranger, or as capable as a Toyota HiLux. I like this Triton but I’d like it even more if it had the Super Select II 4X4 system.

Note: the GLX-R has hill start assist but not hill descent control.

In terms of tray dimensions, it is 1470mm wide (1085mm between the wheel arches), 1520mm long and 475mm deep from the top edge of the load space to the floor. Load height is 865mm from the dirt. The tray has reinforced rear corners and six tie-down points.

The Triton's tray measures in at 1470mm wide, 1520mm long and 475mm deep. The Triton's tray measures in at 1470mm wide, 1520mm long and 475mm deep.

Payload capacity is 934kg. Maximum towing capacity is 3100kg (braked) and 750kg (unbraked). The GLX-R has a GVM of 2900kg and a GCM of 5885kg.

As always, a set of all-terrains and some aftermarket suspension would help make this effective off-roader even more capable.

How much fuel does it consume?

The Triton has a claimed fuel consumption of 8.6L/100km. Average fuel consumption displayed on our dash was 8.6L/100km, but our actual fuel use on test was 9.1L/100km, and that was after about 15km of high-range 4WDing, and some low-range 4WDing.

Average fuel consumption is pegged at 8.6L/100km. Average fuel consumption is pegged at 8.6L/100km.

What safety equipment is fitted? What safety rating?

What does it cost to own? What warranty is offered?

The Mitsubishi Triton is a great value-for-money 4WD dual-cab ute, but in GLX-R guise it’s lacking a few elements that make the higher-spec variants even more appealing – namely Super Select II 4X4, selectable off-road modes and a multi-around monitor.

Ignoring those minor quibbles though, there’s no denying this dual-cab ute is a well-designed, well-built, comfortable daily driver and more than capable when it comes to tackling off-road terrain.

$44,490

Based on new car retail price

VIEW PRICING & SPECS

Daily driver score

3.5/5

Adventure score

4/5

adventureguide rank

  • Light

    Dry weather gravel roads and formed trails with no obstacles, very shallow water crossings.

  • Medium

    Hard-packed sand, slight to medium hills with minor obstacles in all weather.

  • Heavy

    Larger obstacles, steeper climbs and deeper water crossings; plus tracks marked as '4WD only'