The Challenger nameplate today makes a welcome return to the Mitsubishi Motors stable, promising to build on the popularity it achieved when it was last available in New Zealand.
The all-new 2010 model has made strong advances in on-road comfort and driveability and low-range four-wheel drive ability.
The Challenger has a new high-power 2.5-litre common rail intercooled turbo-diesel engine. With automatic transmission, five- or seven-seat layouts and two specification levels.
“Previously, owners of Challenger prized it for its four-wheel drive ability, rather than its on-road comfort”, said Mitsubishi’s sales and marketing general manager Peter Wilkins. ”When Mitsubishi’s designers began work on the new model, their clear intent was to offer the best of both worlds — and we think they nailed it. This vehicle, completely new in every aspect, drives like a dream, on-road and off” ¨¨Challenger slots neatly into Mitsubishi’s renowned four-wheel drive range, competitively positioned between the compact crossover Outlander and the all-terrain Pajero.
Style-wise, the Challenger’s basic design premise was to deliver versatility and flexibility, blending tough with smart and muscle with comfort.
One surprise will be the 133kW of power and the 356Nm of torque put out by the Challenger’s 2.5-litre common rail intercooled turbo-diesel enabling it for heavy-duty towing and off-road driving. The engine uses clean diesel technology, with an optimised combustion chamber, improved injector specifications and a variable geometry turbocharger making big contributions to cleaner emissions. In terms of fuel efficiency the Challenger uses 9.8 litres per 100 kms.
Mitsubishi’s Pajero-style All Terrain Technology (MATT), readies Challenger for the hard stuff. Its off-road safe-traction package: Active Stability and Traction Control (ASTC), Multi-mode ABS with EBD, and rear diff lock help out on the slippery stuff.
With its new ladder-frame chassis, Challenger has 50% more torsional rigidity than its predecessor and the Challenger’s RISE body construction and its six airbags bring added safety. Braked towing capacity is 2,500 kg.
Peter Wilkins says that pricing and specifications have been calibrated to offer solid value with the highest possible feature levels. ¨¨”With the option of five or seven seats, the new Challenger will appeal to active families, so we have made sure that all the bells and whistles that mum, dad and a couple of kids need are there, and at an affordable price”. ¨¨The five-seat Challenger GLS, priced at $56,990, boasts a host of functional styling, comfort and technology features.
These include 17 inch alloy wheels (with a full-sized alloy spare), side steps and roof rails. Inside are steering-wheel mounted controls for cruise and audio, power windows with automatic up and down on the driver’s side, remote keyless entry and central locking, single CD player with six-speaker system, leather-bound steering wheel, an MP3 jack, privacy glass and cargo blind.¨¨The seven-seat Exceed, priced at $61,990, adds third-row seating with a 50/50 split, manually controlled rear air conditioning, and a collection of premium-style features inside and out: to name just a few, leather seat trim, powered driver’s seat, eight-speaker sound, headlamp washers, speed-sensitive wipers and reversing sensors.
The Challenger is covered by the comprehensive Diamond Advantage Warranty, which gives owners a 10-year/160,000 km powertrain warranty, 5-year/130,000 km new car warranty and a 5-year/130,000 km roadside assistance package.
GLS – 5 seat: $56,990
EXCEED – 7 seat: $61,990