Mitsubishi makes damn good Triton brilliant

Over the past couple of years, we reckon the Mitsubishi Triton had to be the top bakkie on the market. Officially our 2018 Best Bakkie 2018, it was not just a shining bargain, but it also remained the quickest four-cylinder diesel double cab we’d ever tested, in spite of a downsized engine a fraction of the capacity of its celebrated rivals.

OK, its styling, while attractive, was perhaps a touch too frumpy for some tastes; its braked towing capacity was initially found lacking (although later partially rectified) and its auto box missed a sixth cog, but that was never enough to detract from what we still considered the market leader – not only on most other fronts, but overall too – especially at the price.

Well that’s just all changed – and diametrically so too. See, Mitsubishi has listened to its customers, paid heed to what the market wants and clearly, read what we wrote and today it introduced us to the all-new Triton. Take a pen and cross out all those little niggles we alluded to above – they are a thing of the past – the best bakkie’s foibles are no longer.

"Mitsubishi has listened to its customers, paid heed to what the market wants and clearly, read what we wrote and today it introduced us to the all-new Triton"

‘Engineered beyond tough’, Mitsubishi promises the muscular new Triton meets the most diverse bakkie customer needs around the world as it brings a host of enhancements and refinements to market to make it an even more compelling attraction to commercial and leisure bakkie owners alike thanks to a comprehensive under the skin makeover behind that latest tough, bold new Mitsubishi Dynamic Shield face.

Now packing a new six-speed autobox, a proper towing capacity and enhanced Super Select II four-wheel drive for improved off-road performance and latest active safety and driver assistance systems, new Triton also brings durability, reliability and comfort developed over 40 years of Mitsubishi bakkies forged by no less than 12 Dakar Rally victories.

First things first – that beefier new Dynamic Shield look seems something between a Samurai mask and a Star Wars fighter with sharpened, angular headlamps, a tauter, sculpted side profile, extended wheel arches, rounded off by a more stylish rear end. Triton can be had in fashionable Sunflare Orange, Diamond White Metallic and Graphite Grey Metallic too.

Step inside and a modern, robust and restyled cabin rich with high-quality soft touch materials is packed with the latest tech end to end. There’s a comfy leather-clad tilt and telescopic audio and cruise multifunction steering wheel backed by voice control to operate the colourful high-tech touch-screen Bluetooth Radio/CD and MP3 player infotainment. Add optional Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and USB and accessory sockets; climate controlled dual-zone aircon and power windows, mirrors and driver’s seat, leather chairs and a chromatic rear-view mirror.

A significant safety specification is based on Triton’s Dakar-developed Super Select 4WD with electronic off-road assistance and RISE body construction, complete with side-impact protection and a collapsible steering column, seven airbags and ISOFIX child seat anchors, speed-sensing auto door lock, a tailgate-mounted high rear stop lamp and keyless access.

That’s further complimented by active stability and traction control with hill start assist and ABS anti-lock braking with larger front discs and calliper pistons, electronic force distribution and brake assist, daytime running lights and a rear view camera.

We told you that it was already the quickest 4-pot turbodiesel double cab out there. New Triton carries the tried and tested 133kW 430Nm 2.4-litre MIVEC intercooled common rail turbodiesel over, driving either the all-new quiet and smooth-shifting 6-speed Intelligent Shift Control automatic or the proven 6-speed manual.

Now tell me that the new Triton does not have all angles covered?

We expect the new one will retain its mid-9 second 0-100km/h ability when we test it soon and Mitsubishi claims an equally impressive 7.5 litres per 100km for the manual and 7.6l/100km for the auto. The Mitsubishi bakkie is now also certified to pull a 3100kg braked trailer for in excess of 4 tonnes total toting capacity combined with Triton’s regular payload; while off-road prowess is boosted by a 5.9m turning circle, 220mm ground clearance, 28º Approach, 23º Departure and 25º ramp over angles and larger, more efficient rear dampers.

Now tell me that the new Triton does not have all angles covered?

But that’s not all – Triton’s Super Select II 4WD System packs a rear diff lock, while the automatic version adds electronic off-road assistance and hill descent control for optimum off-road performance, traction and handling on any surface, aided and abetted by an off-road mode with gravel, mud/snow, sand and rock modes in the 4WD automatic model.

Off-road mode controls engine power, transmission and braking to regulate wheel slip and maximise all-terrain and self-extraction performance in mud or snow. The regular 4H driving mode splits torque 40:60 front to rear via a Torsen limited-slip centre differential, while selecting 4WD High range locks that centre diff to distribute torque equally front to rear for improved traction on sand, dirt and snow. 4LLc (4WD Low range with CD locked) then selects low range for supreme capability in extreme off-road work.

The exceptional Hill Descent Control can speed up by adding throttle and it can brake too, making for fuss free descents on any surface. All in all, if you are up to driving it anywhere, all of the above will conspire that new Triton will take you everywhere.

In conclusion, we were highly impressed by the outgoing Triton from the outset, but Mitsubishi has since gone out, asked its customers, drivers and owners what they think, read what we wrote and acted on it all to now deliver a bakkie that quite simply has it all. 

Our short time with it over some rutted Gauteng roads and then on a really cool little 4x4 course was enough to convince us that Mitsubishi has taken a bloody good bakkie and made a brilliant one from it. Now we anticipate getting to know Triton better – let’s see if it can be beaten to a back to back Best Bakkie. I would not bet against that just yet…

A quick experience with new Triton today, but they say that the first impressions will be the lasting ones. So being, we come home rapt.

Even sweeter is new Triton’s pricing – it undercuts all its rivals, with the entire range coming in at under R600K. New Triton is covered by Mitsubishi’s 3 year/100 000km warranty, 5-year/90 000 km Service Plan at 10 000km intervals and 5-years/unlimited roadside assistance. 

Mitsubishi Triton Pricing
2.4L DI-DC M/T 4x2 – R510K
2.4L DI-DC A/T 4x2 – R530K
2.4L DI-DC M/T 4x4 – R570K
2.4L DI-DC A/T 4x4 – R590K