Words By KON
Over the course of four days driving in excess of 2,000km, the Triton hardly felt like the weak link of a group of cars that also included the 3.0-litre V6 Mercedes-AMG C 43, the ridiculously powerful Mercedes-AMG GLA 45, and the 407hp 2.0-litre twincharged Volvo XC60 T8.
Even the slowest car that came along, the Proton Iriz, was no slouch, for it made up for a lack of horsepower with deft handling that allowed the plucky little hatch to preserve much of its hard-earned speeds around corners just as the others are forced to slow down.
On the road, the engine pulls convincingly, a seemingly endless stream of torque facilitating a relentless build-up of speed. On open stretches of highway, the Triton kept up with the AMGs with barely any hesitation. The amazing high-speed stability of its chassis further feeds the driver’s confidence to keep going.
It wasn’t just the highways on which the Triton shone. Mitsubishi’s all-action pick-up truck seemed just as capable of stringing together a few rapid corners, its chassis somehow managing to cajole enough grip and poise that enable the driver to confidently apply the power and pull past the apex.
And, when the going got rough, on stretches of road neglected by the Public Works Department that the other fancier cars had to take gingerly, the Triton just ploughed through without a shred of hesitation.
We’ve always known that the Triton has an edge over its rivals in the area of driving dynamics, but seeing it keep up with cars purposefully tuned to be sporty was nothing short of astonishing. It was an effective demonstration of the Triton’s amazing capabilities, and it unequivocally confirms the Triton as being the pick-up truck for driving enthusiasts.
oughness meets performance. No other vehicle blends thrilling dynamics with unadulterated ruggedness as effectively as the Mitsubishi Triton. This is a pick-up that plays ball with sports cars, yet will boldly traverse off the beaten track.
A fleet of cars racing to cover the entire Peninsular Malaysia in four days, amongst them, a pair of AMG-badged Mercs and a twin-charged Volvo plug-in hybrid with over 400 horses at its disposal. Not the kind of setting you’d expect a pick-up truck to shine, but that is exactly what the Mitsubishi Triton did during our recently-concluded Cars of Malaysia 2018 convoy.
Mitsubishi introduces the Triton VGT, powered by an uprated version of the 2.5-litre turbodiesel that now makes outputs to match the now-discontinued 3.2-litre engine.
Triton Adventure X vs Athlete
The first-gen Triton arrives in Malaysia, available in 2.5 and 3.2-litre turbodiesel variants. Noted for its unconventional curvaceous design with the distinctive J-line joining the cabin and cargo bed.
And yet, amidst this wonderful selection of cars, nobody, when asked to drive the Triton, muttered a single word of complaint. In fact, most seemed to even enjoy the occasion.
This does not come as a surprise as the Triton enjoys a well-earned reputation of offering some of the best driving dynamics one can ever expect of a pick-up truck. Mitsubishi has more than two decades experience under its belt fine-tuning vehicles competitive for the Dakar Rally, so we are talking about an outfit that knows a thing or two about making a car that is tough and fast.
On the road, high speed stability and agile handling have been well-known traits of the Triton even from the previous-generation model. In the current one, these qualities are resolutely preserved and more effectively exploited thanks to added performance offered by Mitsubishi’s latest-generation 2.4-litre turbodiesel engine.
MIVEC, which stands for Mitsubishi Innovative Valve timing Electronic Control, is a familiar terminology to many performance enthusiasts. Made famous in the 1990s, this technology is now implemented in Triton’s powerplant, a world’s first in a diesel engine.
Also the only engine in its segment to feature all-aluminium construction, the Triton lays a rightful claim in boasting the most technologically-advanced engine in its class. Maximum rated power and torque of 181PS and 430Nm respectively also make the Triton 2.4 competitive against engines of much larger capacity in terms of output.
At the top of its range, the Triton offers two distinctive trim variants to suit the different tastes of buyers. Identical in equipment, the Triton Adventure X and Triton Athlete variants are differentiated primarily by their appearance.
The Adventure X model appeals to those after a more rugged look expressing a more outdoor-oriented lifestyle, whilst the Athlete model portrays a sportier outlook for urban dwellers after a greater performance bias.
Where the Adventure X model highlights its toughness with chunky bumper claddings and two-toned alloy wheels, the Athlete model conveys a more sinister appearance, its all-black paint job contrasted by subtle orange stripes. A standard aerokit and honeycomb mesh grille further conveys the Athlete’s sporty intentions.
Both the Adventure X and Athlete variants boast the highest level of equipment in the Triton range, being equipped with bi-xenon headlamps, 8-way electric driver seat adjustment, paddle shifters, and dual zone climate control.
The Triton undergoes a full model change. The new model was the first pick-up truck in the market to offer keyless entry, tilt & telescopic steering, paddle shifters, xenon headlamps, and daytime running lights.
2016 – Triton receives MIVEC technology with new-generation 2.4-litre turbodiesel engine that is both more powerful and more fuel efficient than its 2.5-litre predecessor. New variants also feature upgraded safety with the offering of 7 airbags and electronic stability control.