First driving test: Mitsubishi ASX

First driving test of the Mitsubishi ASX, which is technically a Renault Captur. ASX has one strong asset versus the Captur.

First driving test: Mitsubishi ASX

Mitsubishi was way ahead of its time with high cars like the Outlander and the ASX. How strange is it that the brand uses a French crossover as the basis for its new ASX. We drove this ‘Japanese’ Renault Captur.

New Mitsubishi ASX? This is a bad photoshop of a Captur

No, believe it or not, but this is a real Mitsubishi, which can soon be admired at all dealers of the brand. For those who do not believe it, the Japanese have written the brand name broadly on the back. And more has changed, such as the logo on the nose and the wheels and uh…. No, it was actually.

Mitsubishi ASX

Just a Captain

That’s weird….

Well, it’s not unique, of course. For example, the current Mazda2 Hybrid has little to do with Mazda’s design language, because it is simply the Toyota Yaris. And the Suzuki Swace and Across are also very easy to recognize as Toyotas. In the past, there are also enough examples to come up with, such as the Seat Exeo (an Audi A4) and the Lancia Voyager (a Chrysler… fill it in). And the most salient example is of course the duo Peugeot 4007/8 and Citroën C-Crosser that were based on the Outlander and ASX of the time. Although more energy was put into those models at the time than in this new ASX, which is really a copy except for the logos.

Mitsubishi ASX

But why does Mitsubishi do this?

Mitsubishi needs all the financial resources for the massive investment towards electric, so developing an ASX successor itself was not an option. The choice was then easy internally: either we stop in the extremely popular segment of the compact SUV, or we look within the Renault-Nissan Alliance, of which Mitsubishi is part, what we can borrow. That way you have a more complete range and you can also offer the current ASX drivers a replacement. Perhaps not to everyone’s taste, but enough customers are loyal to a brand or dealer and they otherwise just walk to Ford, Kia or, indeed, Renault.

And how does this ASX drive?

Not surprisingly, as a Captur. Lots of comfort with good handling. It is that the light, direct steering communicates little and the mounted eco tires cannot handle much, otherwise some dynamics would have been possible. Because the chassis is very good. Drivers of the previous ASX will probably miss the no-nonsense driving of their car, you will not find that tight cleanness of the old ASX in this Captur. It is just a bit more refined and woolly.

Mitsubishi ASX

The pimple is for the parking camera.

So we already know the engines?

Bingo! You have the same four options as with the Captur. A 1.0 and 1.3 turbo engine, a hybrid and a plug-in hybrid. A PHEV is still a rarity in this segment, which is a nice USP. However, we drove the ‘ordinary’ hybrid, which, given its low practical consumption and price, is the car to choose if that option is financially feasible. The system is quite complicated: the car has two electric motors: one serves as a starter/generator and already has more than 20 hp. In addition, you get a larger electric motor with 49 hp. The car always uses it to drive away. The atmospheric 1.6 is then used to generate power with the small generator. But if the power of the engine is also needed, it is linked to the large electric motor via a four-speed automatic transmission without a clutch or torque converter, this is done at 55 km / h at the earliest. The electric motor then ensures that the speeds are almost equal. Because the large electric motor itself also has its own two gears, in practice you have eight gears that are constantly working to get the power to the wheels as efficiently as possible. You have no control over it yourself, so it sometimes takes a while before the car picks up speed when you go full throttle. In a somewhat more dynamic car like the Clio, we find that a bigger problem than in this Mitsubishi ASX, but it takes some getting used to.

Dare we ask about the inside?

It is a fill-in exercise, here too everything is the same as the Renault. For example, the car is quite spacious for its class with a pleasant back seat and 330 liters of luggage space. Optionally, the bench is also slidable to vary with space. Always useful. The cockpit is identical to what we know from Renault with reasonable ergonomics and an up-to-date multimedia system, which Renault has noticeably improved in recent years. The large screen is reserved for the more expensive versions.

Speaking of expensive, the Mitsubishi ASX will be cheaper than the Captur?

uh, no. The ASX is slightly more expensive with its starting price, but also slightly richer equipped. The cars are then difficult to compare because Mitsubishi only works with standard versions and Renault also offers separate options. In any case, it does not differ much, with some versions such as the richly equipped First Edition you are just a bit better off with the ASX. And the Japanese have one last trump card: the ASX, like all other Mitsubishis, comes with a five-year warranty. And you can forget that with Renault. Still nice if you want to use your car for a long time as a private buyer.

Anything else we should know?

Well it doesn’t stop with the ASX, the Japanese will also reveal a new Mitsubishi Colt later this year. If you want to know what it looks like, you can also go to the Renault dealer. Look at a Clio, close your eyes and voilá, that new Colt.


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