LS-M is the most basic MU-X. While it lacks the more premium feel of the upper grades, LS-U and LS-T, it more than holds its own as an entry-level seven-seater SUV.

There are two LS-Ms available: the 4x2 with auto ($42,900) and the 4x4 with auto ($50,200).

All 2018 MU-X variants have a 3.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine (130kW at 3600rpm and 430Nm from 2000-2200rpm) matched to a six-speed manual or auto.

Standard features include 7.0-inch touchscreen with USB and Bluetooth streaming (the upper grades get the 8.0-inch version), reversing camera and rear park-assist sensors, dark grey cloth seats, gun-metal grey grille (only on LS-M), Bi-LED projector headlights, keyless entry, colour-coded side mirrors, hill descent control, trailer sway control, airconditioning, power windows, carpet floor and 16-inch alloy wheels (the LS-U and LS-T get 18-inch).

The suspension set-up is independent up front, with high-ride coil springs and gas shocks at the front; and multi-link coils and gas shocks at the back end.

The LS-M's braked towing capacity is 3000kg. Ground clearance is 220mm.