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Has Mitsubishi missed the mark with its Ralliart return? 2022 Triton and Pajero Sport Ralliart revealed with surprising upgrades

The special-edition Mitsubishi Triton Ralliart from Thailand is little more than a styling package.

Mitsubishi has made the first move in reintroducing its iconic Ralliart sub-brand, but anyone hoping for a beefed-up performance-focused off-roader might be disappointed.

The Japanese carmaker’s Thai subsidiary has launched a trio of Ralliart-branded models, including the Pajero Sport, Triton dual cab and Triton extra cab ute.

However, the new editions are not the Ford Ranger Raptor rivals some had hoped for. Instead, they offer visual flourishes but no changes under the skin.

The Triton Ralliart gains a blacked-out lower front apron with Ralliart red highlights, branded side decals, red mud flaps, floor mats and a special tub-liner.

The Pajero Sport SUV also features side decals, some red highlights for the front and rear bumpers, a black rear tailgate spoiler, black roof, black wheel arch mouldings, red mud flaps and floor mats.

Colour options for both models are limited to white or black.

There are no tweaks to the 133kW/430Nm 2.4-litre turbo-diesel engine that powers both models, and there are no off-road accessories added for improved four-wheel drive capability.

The Pajero Sport gains visual flourishes including side decals and a black tailgate spoiler. The Pajero Sport gains visual flourishes including side decals and a black tailgate spoiler.

While Mitsubishi Motors Australia Limited (MMAL) told CarsGuide that these specific Ralliart variants are limited to Thailand, a company spokesperson highlighted the heritage of the Ralliart brand in Australia and hinted at possible future announcements. 

"Mitsubishi Motors is considering some exciting initiatives around the Ralliart, and we at MMAL can’t wait to see what the future holds," the spokesperson said. 

As CarsGuide has reported, Mitsubishi Motors announced in May this year that it would reintroduce the Ralliart brand that is synonymous with rallying and performance to add more “Mitsubishi Motors-ness” to its model line-up.

Following that announcement, a Mitsubishi Motors Australia spokesperson told CarsGuide that the company was excited about the return of the Ralliart name.

“We know that people love fast, tough utes, and we think a vehicle like the Triton Ralliart will resonate with Australia,” the spokesperson said in mid-May.

“So much of what we are comes from our rally experience. Historically, that's what Mitsubishi has stood for. So who in the company wouldn't want to work on a Triton Ralliart?”

Most punters assumed that a Triton Ralliart would up the ante when it comes to off-road prowess with the addition of special parts and accessories, and that Mitsubishi would squeeze more power and torque out of the existing four-cylinder turbo diesel, or shoehorn in a different powertrain for extra performance.

It looks like Mitsubishi’s Ford Ranger Raptor, Nissan Navara Pro-4X Warrior, Volkswagen Amarok W580X and Toyota HiLux Rugged X rival is still a while off.

Previous Mitsubishi models that received the Ralliart treatment, including chassis and powertrain enhancements for better performance include the Colt light hatchback, locally built Magna sedan and the Lancer small car.