Mitsubishi wins big with NZ government contract

August 30th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Mitsubishi Motors has been selected by the New Zealand Government Procurement Development Group to supply vehicles for use by all government agencies over the next five years.

The popular Outlander LS, in both 2WD and 4WD, was selected for Large Wagon and Large SUV categories respectively, while Triton GL and GLX were both selected for the 2WD and 4WD Utility categories.

Mitsubishi Motors NZ national fleet sales manager Mike Davidson is delighted with the decision. “The endorsement is a reflection of the quality and value of both models, our industry-leading 10/5 Diamond Advantage Warranty and the strength of the Mitsubishi network,” he said

“Ever since its launch in 2005, Outlander has been a New Zealand favourite and it continues to top the sales charts in its class. Triton has moved from strength to strength and is recognised for its class-leading 4WD and safety features. It is the only option in the diesel ute segment with active stability control and the GL configuration is the only 4WD ute with rear diff lock as standard.

“The all-of-government procurement process reviewed 518 vehicles provided by 14 suppliers. Up to eighty five percent of the vehicles available to agencies could potentially be supplied by Mitsubishi and two other suppliers,” said Mr Davidson.

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Mitsubishi ASX officially launched in NZ

August 11th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Mitsubishi Motors New Zealand has officially launched its all-new ASX (Active Smart Crossover) in NZ at an event yesterday.

To reflect consumer demand, Mitsubishi has brought its light weight, compact bodied SUV to the New Zealand market. ASX marks the company’s attempt at integrating the simple functionality and compact size of the hatchback with the utility and style of an SUV.

Under the bonnet, there’s a choice of a fuel efficient 2.0 litre DOHC MIVEC Petrol Engine and a 1.8 litre DOHC MIVEC Intercooled Turbo Diesel Engine inside the 4WD Diesel Sport. The two MIVEC engine options deliver solid daily driveability and impressive fuel economy. Fuel economy and CO2 figures on the 2WD models are 7.9 L/100km and 184 g/km respectively, while the 4WD comes in at 8.1 L/100km and 188 g/km. The Diesel Sport model rounds out the range with fuel economy of 5.9 L/100km and C02 emissions of 155 g/km.

Inside the ASX is a soft touch dash and freshly designed 3D embossed seat fabric options.

All three sport models are equipped with steering wheel mounted audio controls and Bluetooth hands free audio. There’s a one touch start button and Electronic Power Steering which compliments the high ride height of the ASX, while the light weight impact resistant front guard will minimize the damage from small impact items like shopping trolleys in supermarket car parks.

Safety features in the ASX are impressive, with Active Stability Control and seven airbags earning the 2WD ASX models a five star ANCAP safety rating.

“The ASX is such a smart, efficient package we think city dwellers who own hatches and sedans will see it as a ‘step up’,” said Mitsubishi Head of Sales & Marketing Strategy Daniel Cook. “All the
SUV plusses like lots of space flexibility and the panoramic driving position, plenty of vitality and ooomph, but without the bulk that often just isn’t practical in the city and suburbs.”

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Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X SE shows its stuff in this promo vid

July 26th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X SE shows its stuff in this promo vid

Mitsubishi increases Triton towing capacity to three tonnes

July 22nd, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Mitsubishi’s 4WD Triton truck has just been upgraded to a three tonne braked towing capacity across the range.

Improvements to the Triton range include a strengthened chassis to facilitate the new tow weight and a new high-efficiency air filter with pre-filter to improve cabin air quality on dusty roads.

“Triton’s new braked tow rating beats the segment leader by 20%,” said MMNZ head of sales and marketing strategy Daniel Cook. “That is a significant margin and, stacked with safety features that gain a four-star ANCAP rating, Triton is fast becoming the best spec’ed, best value 4WD ute in the NZ market.”

To improve ride, the mid-range 4WD GLX double cab gains the premium GLS Sport suspension package and a wider alloy wheel set with 245/70 R16 tyres. To showcase the new wheels, body colour guards give the GLX a high-end appearance.

“4WD GLX has been a very popular model for us,” said Mr Cook. “It has received a lot of interest and success in the fleet market where customers are looking for a value-priced ute with full safety specifications. Large organisations that work in rural areas such as PGG Wrightson and the NZ Fire Service have rigorously tested 4WD utes for their fleets and all have agreed Triton is the best of the bunch.” Continue reading “Mitsubishi increases Triton towing capacity to three tonnes” »

More refined 2011 Mitsubishi Lancer arriving in NZ next month

July 20th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

The 2011 Mitsubishi Lancer is due in New Zealand next month and will be 20% quieter than its predecessor.

“Significant upgrades to insulation have made a very noticeable difference to sound intrusion,” said MMNZ head of sales and marketing strategy Daniel Cook. “The improvements are in response to feedback from our customers and will have a direct improvement on occupant comfort.”

Together with the sound reduction, the four-strong Lancer model range gains mechanical brake assist, which aids the driver in heavy braking situations, and automatic driver’s window function. A further useful introduction is the programmable welcome home exterior lighting, which allows the driving lights to remain on for 30 seconds while exiting the vehicle.

All but the sports orientated VRX have received further refinements to suspension springs and dampers for a more comfortable ride. VR and VRX have a revised one-touch keyless entry system and larger side air dams give both variants a sportier look. VRX also receives a stereo USB port for external music players.

“Lancer is a cornerstone model for us and has many loyal customers,” said Mr Cook. “These improvements will certainly make their decision to purchase easier and combined with our industry-leading 10/5 Diamond Advantage New Car Warranty with five years roadside assist, it’s a very persuasive package.”

The 10/5 Diamond Advantage New Car Warranty provides ten years or 160,000km — which ever comes first – cover on the drive train and five years or 130,000km cover on the whole vehicle.

Pricing for the 2011 Lancer range remains the same.

Lancer Pricing

2.0 ES Manual               $27,990
2.0 ES CVT Auto          $29,990
2.0 SX CVT Auto          $32,500
2.0 VR CVT Auto         $35,500
2.4 VRX Manual            $38,500
2.4 VRX CVT Auto       $39,990

– Lancer sedan and hatch hold the same RRP for each respective variant

Click here to read a Car and SUV review of the Mitsubishi Lancer ES

Click here to read a Car and SUV review of the Mitsubishi Lancer VRX

Mitsubishi Lancer ES 2010 Review

May 14th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

There’s more than one way to create temptation among potential car customers. You can offer more features for the same price or you can tempt by offering less for a discounted price. At Car and SUV we often review high-spec, bells and whistles cars but for this road test that’s all changed and we got some seat time in the cut-price cruiser Mitsubishi Lancer ES. The ES is Mitsubishi’s base-model Lancer that has achieved an attractive price point that will give it strong appeal to fleet customers and budget conscious consumers alike. But creating true temptation is about more than saving money, especially in the hard-fought compact sedan segment. We spent a week with the Lancer ES to uncover its allure.

In terms of price the Lancer ES is scalpel sharp at undercutting its direct Japanese competition. Costing $27,990 for the manual and $29,990 for the CVT auto, the base spec Lancer is $3-5k cheaper than its rivals. The lowest model Honda Civic ($33,800) and Subaru Impreza ($32,990) can’t match the Lancer ES, while the Mazda3 ($30,895) comes closest but only in hatch form. You would have to go Korean and consider the Kia Cerato LX with its $28,990 price as the specification is higher and the Cerato is arguably as good looking.

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Mitsubishi giving Peugeot/Citroen ASX platform

April 30th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) and PSA Peugeot Citroën have announced today that the parties have come to an agreement to start a new collaborative project regarding a compact SUV.

This agreement provides for the development and adaptation for both the Peugeot and Citroën marques of a compact SUV, based on an existing Mitsubishi platform.

Launched early 2012 in Europe, these new compact SUVs will have specific designs for Peugeot and Citroën while sharing many components with the Mitsubishi vehicle, named RVR in Japan and ASX here in NZ.

These vehicles will be available in both four- and two-wheel drive. The projected volume for Peugeot and Citroën will reach 50,000 units per year for both brands.

Under the agreement, PSA Peugeot Citroën will use its 1.6 HDi diesel engine snatched from the parts bin for its own models. CO2 emissions with this engine will be particularly low for this type of vehicle, targeting, for the two-wheel drive version, 123g CO2 / km and less than 4.7 litres per 100km fuel economy.

For PSA Peugeot Citroën, the new vehicles will expand the ranges of both Peugeot and Citroën and attract new customers in a market segment they believe will grow worldwide by almost 60% by 2015.

For Mitsubishi Motors, the additional volume will enable it to bolster production of this platform.

This is the 4th cooperative project between the two partners, after the SUV Mitsubishi Outlander, Peugeot 4007 and Citroën C-Crosser agreement in 2005, the construction of a joint plant in Russia that has just been inaugurated, and the European launch in late 2010 of the Peugeot iOn and Citroën C-zero electric vehicles, based on MMC’s Japanese i-MiEV model.

To read a Car and SUV road test of the Mitsubishi Outlander, click here.

To read a Car and SUV road test of the Peugeot 4007, click here.

Mitsubishi Triton GLS 2010 Review

March 26th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Talkback radio is usually the domain of the lonely and sometimes angry, but it is still a system with its own merits. While a radio audience is generally passive, talkback gives listeners the chance to not just stress an opinion but also actively change the landscape of the show. Radio may seem a far cry from the NZ utility vehicle market but it’s the talkback dialogue between Mitsubishi and its customers that has resulted in some vital changes to the facelifted Triton ute. To check the results of this mid-cycle refresh, long time listeners but first time drivers Car and SUV dialled up a new 2010 Triton GLS and took a long drive.

The biggest news for the updated Triton is lying under the bonnet where the previous 3.2-litre diesel engine has been replaced with a 2.5-litre unit for all the 4WD models. This may at first seem an odd response to customers wanting more grunt but the smaller diesel engine increases power 11% to 131kW and torque is up 17% to 400Nm in manual form. With the automatic transmission torque is rated at 356Nm. This increase is made possible by a fresh design to the engine’s internals and a hard-boosting variable geometry turbocharger.

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