2016 Mitsubishi Pajero Sport Road Test and Review.
Available in three specifications; GLX, GLS and Exceed, prices start from $45,000. Across the range you are offered the same 2.4 litre diesel engine, eight-speed automatic transmission and dual-range 4×4.
The only thing that holds it back is the lack of a third-row of seats.
Hampered by only having the five seats, rumour has it that a seven-seat version of the Pajero Sport is on the way (of course you will hear about that first with us if it happens).
The styling is very much a talking point with this new Mitsubishi model and I reckon that from most angles it is an attractive offering. It is certainly nicer to look at from the front than the Mitsubishi Triton (which shares many of the same underpinnings).
True, the rear styling is divisive, at first I hated it, now I have somewhat warmed to it. I also asked a few people in my circle whether it would stop them from buying it, they all said no.
The first thing I always look for in an SUV/4×4 that is related to a ute version is the seating position, which is sometimes quite low to the floor and a bit uncomfortable. Not so here, the Pajero Sport cabin is roomy, especially legroom and the boot space is high, long and wide.
The cabin is nicely designed, the fit and finish is above acceptable and controls are all well placed.
You might make an argument that on the Exceed version there are too many switches on the steering wheel, what is there though is easy enough to use and learn.
There is a lack of centre storage space for things like your mobile phone. Yes, there are two cup holders there but what if you are using them? There are two little storage areas on the front/side of the console though – handy to have but not necessarily practical/convenient.
The hard angle on the top edge of the console is also not comfortable to rest your leg against. The lack of a driver’s foot rest is also fairly evident.
You do get some good stuff in this Exceed-grade though. The cruise control allows for incremental speed adjustment, that’s handy.
While standard features include digital radio, forward collision mitigation (which works quite well), reverse, side and front cameras, heated/electric front seats, electric park brake, roof-mounted DVD, push-button ignition, leather seats and eight-speaker stereo.
On the road the 2.4 litre diesel engine takes a little encouraging to get the Pajero Sport moving, once those revs are up though it really goes quicker than I had imagined, this makes it really easy to drive, especially in stop/start conditions.
It also has genuine off-road ability and will take you to more places than you will most likely ever ask it to. It also handles dirt road corrugations well and felt confident on dirt roads at speed (even in 2WD).
The only extra you can tick the box for is metallic paint – at $550, while a five-star safety rating features across the board.
Summing it up; Mitsubishi has a genuinely good offering here that is competitively priced, stylish enough (yes, even the rear), comes with a better than industry average warranty, is comfortable and really well kitted out.
Pajero Sport sales are doing well, if Mitsubishi can get the extra row of seats in there then they really will have a vehicle that ticks ALL the boxes for Aussie families.
NUTS and BOLTS – 2016 Mitsubishi Pajero Sport
Engine: 2.4 litre turbo-diesel producing 133kW and 430Nm
Transmission: Eight-speed automatic
Safety: Five stars
Price: from $45,000