While it seems like only yesterday that Mitsubishi Motors South Africa launched its new Triton, GAVIN MYERS has just driven the latest version
It was, in fact more than two years ago that the previous Triton made its local debut. Apparently 80 000 hours of development went into this latest model, which is a significantly revised Triton – sporting a bold new look and substantial revisions under the skin. Globally, Triton sales were up 10,8 percent in 2018, and it’s not difficult to see why…
It’s impossible to miss the squarer, sharper, bolder styling. It incorporates Mitsubishi’s new-generation “Dynamic Shield” front design concept. Flared, squared-off wheel arches and revised rear-end treatment with new light clusters complete the new macho look.
While inspecting the Triton’s rump, I was pleased to note that the tailgate now features a support strut that immeasurably eases the effort required to raise and lower it. I’d love to see this simple feature added to more bakkies!
The Triton’s interior has come in for revision, too. The refreshed cabin boasts a new dashboard and trim pieces, USB charging points in the rear, as well as a colour driver information screen in the instrument binnacle. The main talking point, however, is the (optional) touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as navigation.
The list of safety features is probably the longest on the Triton’s spec sheet, with just some of the notable appointments being LED headlamps, seven airbags, a reversing camera, keyless entry and start, active stability and traction control and a suite of electronic braking aids.
Those who regularly travel off road will notice that the electronic, shift-on-the-fly, Super Select 2 system has received a couple of new buttons… These are for the Electronic Off-road Assistance and Hill Descent Control (automatic models only).
Off-road Assistance offers settings for Gravel, Mud/Snow, Sand and Rock. The system adapts the engine power, transmission and braking, to regulate the amount of wheel slip and therefore aids progress over the relevant terrain.
Combined with the Super Select 2 rear and centre diff locks, the Triton’s already impressive off-road ability has been enhanced. We were able to put the systems to thorough test on launch and, combined with the Triton’s 220-mm ground clearance; 5,9-m turning circle; and small approach, departure and breakover angles, it didn’t break a sweat.
Under the bonnet is the same 2,4-litre MIVEC turbodiesel engine. With its 133 kW and 430 Nm (combined-cycle fuel consumption is claimed at up to 7,6 l/100 km), it does feel slightly underpowered compared to some of the units in its rivals, however it gets on smoothly and without fuss.
Mitsubishi has (finally) replaced the old five-speed automatic gearbox with a new, smooth-shifting six-speed unit, while the six-speed manual remains available.
Significantly, the new Triton boasts a 3,1-t towing capacity thanks to the use of larger rear dampers, which are also meant to enhance ride comfort. Mitsubishi has also improved braking performance with the use of larger front discs and calliper pistons.
The new Triton undercuts its main rivals with pricing starting at R509 995 for the manual transmission 4×2, and going up to R589 995 for the automatic 4×4. A five-year/90 000 km service plan, five-year/unlimited mileage roadside assistance and three-year/100 000 km warranty are included.