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Mitsubishi’s restyled new ASX range

Mitsubishi’s compact crossover has built a dedicated following since it first arrived in 2010 - and not only here in New Zealand. It’s been a global success, Mitsubishi says, with over a quarter-million sold worldwide. The fresh new design look of the 2013 model, due in showrooms  late August, promises to generate even more fans. This will be complimented by a large range of specification upgrades throughout and price-leading LS 2WD model.

The new ASX sports a significant redesign from front to rear, with a smoother, European-inspired outline that softens the overall appeal of the vehicle. There’s a two-tone feel, with sills and lower bumpers finished dark grey, and a softer, premium chrome-surrounded grille that meshes seamlessly with a new fog light design.

Mitsubishi’s Head of Sales and Marketing Strategy Daniel Cook says: “This softer new look will appeal to a much larger range of buyers than the previous aggressive stance of the ‘jetfighter’ grille. The vehicle will now look equally at home on the streets of Auckland as the ski fields of Wanaka.”

All four 2013 models get a good measure of detail design and equipment improvements, including; the impressive new six-inch LCD touch screen display that delivers fingertip control for the audio system and a big safe view for the reversing camera that’s now standard across the range.

In the interior all models also receive the newly designed Mitsubishi steering wheel that delivers improved driver ergonomics and use of fingertip controls for Bluetooth, audio and cruise control, new trims, and a push button 4WD selector on 4WD models. Sport models also get turn indicator lamps on the door mirrors and an auto dimming rear view mirror.

Among mechanical upgrades is a recalibration (technically, refined “mapping”) of the continuously-variable transmission (CVT), which Mitsubishi says gives better driving response than ever.

While powertrains continue as before - 2.0-litre 112kW MIVEC petrol with CVT and 1.8-litre 305 Nm MIVEC turbo diesel with six-speed manual transmission - braked towing capacity sees a whopping increase to 1300kg, and to 1400kg for the diesel. To balance the increase in transmission performance and tow ratings a new suspension package and steering controls have also been introduced.

“The darling of the new 2013 ASX range is the entry level LS 2WD which has seen huge specification upgrades at a significantly reduced price. This model offers versatility, style and comfort at the amazing price point of $31,990” says Cook. The LS model gains 16’ alloy wheel, touch screen audio with reversing camera, premium chrome package and all of the styling and technical improvements made across the ASX range.

 “ASX has proved itself the right mix of performance, economy, safety and versatility for a great many Mitsubishi owners. The extra refinement of the 2013 models ensures the ASX has everything the crossover buyer is looking for”.

Fuel consumption ratings are 7.9l/100km for the LS and 2WD Sport, 8.1l/100km for the 4WD Sport and 5.7l/100km for the 4WD diesel manual.

ASX is a safe choice, with seven airbags, Mitsubishi’s RISE safe-construction technology, and a five-star maximum Euro ANCAP rating as tested on the 2WD models. Working quietly to keep everyone safe in the most difficult driving conditions are ABS anti-lock braking, Active Stability & Traction Control, Electronic Brake Distribution, Brake Assist, and the Smart Brake brake-override system.