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Mitsubishi ASX 2023 review: GSR

The Mitsubishi ASX GSR is popular for a reason, it's practical and sporty with plenty of space.

If you’re looking for an affordable family car, the Mitsubishi ASX is one of the most popular available and for good reason. It has a fairly large boot for a smaller SUV, plus it's a nice drive and fairly fuel efficient.  

I drove the GSR model, which is the sportier-looking version of the ASX, and found the 2.4-litre petrol engine great for highway driving.

I had no problem overtaking large trucks when I needed to, and like the high positioning of the driver’s seat. 

This compact SUV competes with cars like the Hyundai Kona and Kia Seltos and was priced at $31,990 before optional extra at the time of this review. The GSR and the Exceed are the only models that come with the larger engine.

For this week’s family review, I drove the ASX GSR to Canberra and back with my sister, and did my usual suburban and city driving as well. I was impressed at the fuel efficiency and how easily the car handled most day-to-day driving situations.

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What does it look like?

The ASX had a refresh two years ago and received this slightly funkier design. It has made the car look a lot more modern, but it doesn't hide the fact it came out 12 years ago, particularly on the inside.

The car I reviewed came in the 'Sunshine Orange' paint option, which I think helps it stand out. It was easy to find from a distance at the shopping centre, although the colour was a little divisive for my family.

The GSR comes with black finishes on the grille and spoiler to help give it a unique look in the range. It also has 18-inch black alloy wheels. When you add the metallic features near the door and the black roof racks, it helps tie the look of the GSR together. 

The ASX had a refresh two years ago and received this slightly funkier design. (image: Dean McCartney) The ASX had a refresh two years ago and received this slightly funkier design. (image: Dean McCartney)

Inside, the ASX has a practical and clean design, the GSR has a sportier look with red trim detailing on the fake suede and synthetic leather seats.

It also has the same type of material on the steering wheel and gear shift knob and chrome pedal covers as well.

There is quite a bit of plastic, but it's been broken up with black metallic detailing that helps to give the GSR a better aesthetic.

The handbrake and gearshift stand out, adding to the car starting to feel a bit dated, but I quite like the reassurance of having this older style parking brake.

The GSR comes with black finishes on the grille and spoiler to help give it a unique look in the range. (image: Dean McCartney) The GSR comes with black finishes on the grille and spoiler to help give it a unique look in the range. (image: Dean McCartney)

How does it drive?

With the GSR's more powerful 2.4-litre petrol engine, it does drive better than cheaper models in the range (powered by a 2.0-litre engine).

It has enough grunt to pass a B-Double on the highway and keep up with the flow of traffic easily, even on long winding inclines.  

The GSR comes with paddle shifters, but I think they make the car look quite plastic as they're quite large.

With the GSR's more powerful 2.4-litre petrol engine, it does drive better than cheaper models in the range. (image: Dean McCartney) With the GSR's more powerful 2.4-litre petrol engine, it does drive better than cheaper models in the range. (image: Dean McCartney)

The position of the driver's seat made me feel quite high up and gave great visibility, better than some of its rivals. I also found my vision wasn’t blocked by the pillars.

One point to note is that while the suspension is okay, it’s no Rolls-Royce

The ASX GSR has a great turning circle and the reversing camera does the job. My sister and I found it easy to park and manoeuvre into tight spaces.

How spacious is it?

The car has a decent amount of space all around. I'm 177cm (5'10") and was comfortable as the driver and front passenger.

My sister and I shared the driving on a trip from Sydney to Canberra (roughly 300km each way) and we both had a decent amount of room as the driver and passenger, with quite a bit of headroom. 

Two adults also fit fairly comfortably in the back, but we found three is a squeeze.

The car has two ISOFIX points and three top-tether child seat anchorages but I think it would be a tight fit for three child seats.  

  • The car has a decent amount of space all around. (image: Dean McCartney) The car has a decent amount of space all around. (image: Dean McCartney)
  • Two adults also fit fairly comfortably in the back, but we found three is a squeeze. (image: Dean McCartney) Two adults also fit fairly comfortably in the back, but we found three is a squeeze. (image: Dean McCartney)

We put a rear facing child seat in the back and it took up quite a bit of space but there's still enough room for the front passenger, if they’re on the shorter side. 

The boot is 393 litres and fits a lot for a compact SUV. I had two medium-sized suitcases plus a few extra bags and pillows and still had space to spare. 

If you fold the back row down, you get an impressive 1193 litres of cargo space.

The car doesn’t have an electric tailgate, but it does come with a full-sized spare which is great for peace-of-mind.

  • The boot is 393 litres and fits a lot for a compact SUV. (image: Dean McCartney) The boot is 393 litres and fits a lot for a compact SUV. (image: Dean McCartney)
  • If you fold the back row down, you get an impressive 1193 litres of cargo space. (image: Dean McCartney) If you fold the back row down, you get an impressive 1193 litres of cargo space. (image: Dean McCartney)

How easy is it to use every day?

The ASX does pretty well in terms of practicality, particularly for a small family.

It has keyless entry, automatic headlights and auto wipers which came in handy on our road trip. 

The seats don’t have lumbar support adjustments, but keeping that in mind they were comfortable for the nearly four-hour trip. 

One thing to note is there isn’t a lot of info in the driver settings, it’s quite basic and the safety settings are manual buttons, located on the right side of the driver, which is a bit odd.

The ASX does pretty well in terms of practicality, particularly for a small family. (image: Dean McCartney) The ASX does pretty well in terms of practicality, particularly for a small family. (image: Dean McCartney)

The car has two cupholders in the middle which are a decent size, plus the centre console and glove box.

The front doors have bottle holders, but my large 1.0-litre bottle didn't fit properly.

My niece wasn't a fan of the ASX as there's no directional air conditioning vents in the back, but she did like that it had two USB ports and an arm rest with two cupholders.

How safe is it?

The ASX GSR comes with most of the safety features you’d expect at this price range. 

You get basic cruise control, plus there’s blind-spot monitoring, lane departure warnings, rear cross-traffic alert and a forward collision system with pedestrian detection.  

The ASX range comes with seven airbags including your front and side airbags for the driver and passenger, plus a driver knee airbag and curtain airbags covering both rows.

It scored a maximum five star ANCAP rating in 2014, but that’s a long time ago for safety features and a lot has changed since then. 

What’s the tech like?

The car has an 8.0-inch media touchscreen, wired apple CarPlay and AndroidAuto, but I did find the car’s voice command system didn't work for me unless I used Siri via Apple CarPlay.  

There are two USB ports up front and the climate-controlled air conditioning is easy to adjust while driving.

The car has an 8.0-inch media touchscreen, wired apple CarPlay and AndroidAuto. (image: Dean McCartney) The car has an 8.0-inch media touchscreen, wired apple CarPlay and AndroidAuto. (image: Dean McCartney)

How much does it cost to own?

The GSR model is towards the top of the ASX range, and had a list price of $31,990, before optional extras at the time of this review. 

If you’re looking to spend less, the base model ES starts at just under $25,000 while the Exceed will set you back roughly $2.5K more than this one.

For the extra money, the GSR also comes with the 18-inch alloy wheels in the black finish and black grille, spoiler and door mirrors. Plus there’s a touchscreen, wired AppleCarPlay and AndroidAuto, plus voice command. 

On paper, when you add the conditional 10-year warranty (or 200,000 kilometre new car warranty) and capped price servicing, the ASX is pretty good value-for-money overall.

The GSR model is towards the top of the ASX range, and had a list price of $31,990. (image: Dean McCartney) The GSR model is towards the top of the ASX range, and had a list price of $31,990. (image: Dean McCartney)

Keep in mind, the standard for this class is five years, and you also get a 10 year or 150,000km capped price servicing plan and road side assist, but only if you have the car serviced at Mitsubishi

The ASX needs a service every 12 months or 15,000km which is pretty convenient

I did around 750 kilometres during my review and my petrol usage was 9.5 litres per 100 kilometres on average.

I thought it was fairly good, even though it was a bit high for the long highway trip. The official specs are 7.9L/100km on the combined cycle. 

It's worth nothing the ASX GSR takes cheaper 91 petrol, unlike a lot of newer rivals that need Premium, plus I managed to get all the way to Canberra and back from the Sydney’s Northern Beaches on one tank.


The Wrap

The ASX GSR has a sporty look and the large cargo space and overall affordability makes it family-friendly, for four or less.

It’s 2.4-litre engine gives the GSR a good drive, but I think it’s worth pointing out the base models of the ASX don't come with all of the safety features included. 

I’m giving the car 3.5 out of five because although the inside is quite basic and feels dated compared to most of its competition, it has plenty of things you need for a good family car, plus great ownership options.

My niece gave it a 3.5 out of five because she loved the USB ports in the back and the colour. But she did take family points off for no directional air conditioning vents for the rear seats.

Likes

Spacious
Large cargo space
2.4-litre engine

Dislikes

Dated interior
Minimal tech
No rear directional air vents

Scores

Helen:

3.5

The Kids:

3.5

$31,990

Based on new car retail price


Disclaimer: The pricing information shown in the editorial content (Review Prices) is to be used as a guide only and is based on information provided to Carsguide Autotrader Media Solutions Pty Ltd (Carsguide) both by third party sources and the car manufacturer at the time of publication. The Review Prices were correct at the time of publication.  Carsguide does not warrant or represent that the information is accurate, reliable, complete, current or suitable for any particular purpose. You should not use or rely upon this information without conducting an independent assessment and valuation of the vehicle.