The Mitsubishi ASX can be called just about anything except for “new” and this is the word we are looking for because the company seems to have forgotten these past few years of its popular compact crossover. But after all these years of production and some serious competitors on the market, does the ASX still have what it needs? Well, our review is trying to find that out!
Engine and Transmission
The tested car came with a 2.2 liter diesel turbocharged DI-D DOHC four-cylinder inline 16 valve engine, which is capable of producing a total output of 150 HP (110 kW), at 3,500 rpm, and it has a peak torque of 360 Nm, which is available between 1,500 rpm and 2,750 rpm. On paper this looks good for an agile C-segment crossover but once you step inside it and behind the wheel, things tend to change. The engine feels old, even if it is meeting the Euro 5 emission standard, the six-speed automatic transmission coming with it seems like it’s stuck in the ‘90s but we cannot call it underpowered, because it isn’t, even if it may seem sometimes, but what you really need is a heavy right foot and you’re on your way.
Mitsubishi claims that the ASX, in the 2.2 Diesel AT 4WD version is capable of returning 5.1 liters on fuel every 100 km, on the highway, 7.1 liters in the city and 5.8 liters in combined. Things tend to be quite different in the real world because I simply couldn’t achieve less than 6.5 L / 100 km and in a normal driving style, on the highway, at speeds between 100 km/h and 120 km/h, the trip computer indicated almost 8.5 L / 100 km. In the city, things aren’t looking great either and the average fuel consumption shown was stuck at approximately 11 L / 100 km. So if this is your main concern, you better off with an Outlander, because it will eat just about the same but you will get a newer design, a larger cabin and more space in the boot for your luggage. Keep in mind that the fuel consumption achieved was in 2WD mode, without the AC on.
For a crossover that feel this old to drive, the suspension is surprisingly comfortable and this is a good plus compared to the competition which has sacrificed this in order to make it agile around corners. Speaking about cornering, the ASX isn’t good at it because the steering often forgets its job. The weight balance isn’t that good either and placing a 2.2 liter engine at the front, combined with the front-wheel drive which you will mostly use and the ride height are seriously affecting its cornering capabilities. A good set of tires will help you along the way but these cannot change the chassis settings or the fact that the front end of the vehicle feels like it has a concrete block tied to it. The four-wheel drive was put to the test a bit and it got me out of a very muddy situation in which the 2WD left me. Keep in mind that the ASX doesn’t have a low-range gearbox so don’t take it off-roading too often.
The Mitsubishi ASX has a clean and conservative layout for its cabin. I particularly like the heater knobs which are large so you can operate them with your gloves and that goes for the window controls. The aluminum and chrome insertions are a constant reminder that this is not a big SUV but a compact crossover. The paddle shifters fitted to the steering wheel are useless but it seems that more and more carmakers are adding these to their vehicles. This is understandable on an exotic ride or even on a hot hatch, but we’re talking about a crossover here, equipped with a diesel engine, so it’s not like you will be using them.
The infotainment system seems tricky to operate and the fact that it has a touch screen isn’t helping it either, especially if the road you are driving onto is bumpy. The navigation system missed the address I was supposed to arrive to by a couple of streets and I didn’t like the fact that once I started the sat-nav on my phone, I didn’t have anywhere to put it. Except for this, and the seats which could use better side support, the cabin of the ASX is surprisingly good and the materials used are high quality, so they shouldn’t make you any problems over the years. One last thing I have to mention is the Rockford Fosgate audio system, with the trunk mounted subwoofer, which is definitely something to go for and, if you have seen it in an Outlander let’s say, you know what to expect. I really hope that the conservative design of the cabin will be maintained for the next generation, which is rumored to be introduced by the end of this year.
Likes / Dislikes
The engine and the transmission can be annoying especially if you have driven its competitors and you decided to stick to the ASX. The fuel consumption figures aren’t that brilliant either and neither is its cornering ability. Besides these, the ASX is still a surprisingly good vehicle, with an appealing exterior design and a clean layout in the cabin. You will even get used to, eventually, to the infotainment system and one thing you definitely have to “check” on the options list is the glass panoramic roof, which is electrically operable and it even has two strips of LEDs in it, which can be turned brighter or even off at the touch a button. Back in 2011 when it was tested by the Euro NCAP, the ASX received a maximum 5-star safety rating but things will probably change if it will undergo the same tests again.
Mitsubishi ASX 2.2 Diesel AT Instyle 4WD
Engine: 2.2 liter diesel, 2,268 cc cc
Power: 150 HP at 3,500 rpm
Torque: 360 NM @ 1,500 rpm – 2,750 rpm
Transmission: 6-speed automatic
Dimensions: length 4,295 mm, width 1,770 mm, height 1,615 mm
Weight: 1,595 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity: 51
Trunk Capacity: 416 liters
0 – 100 km/h: 10.8s
Top Speed: 190 km/h
Starting Price – 21,500 EUR, VAT included
Tested Car – 34,600 EUR, VAT included
3.4 / 5