Mitsubishi ASX, 2011
Mitsubishi Motors extends the concept one notch below (C-segment) with the introduction of a smaller and sportier sibling: the all-new Mitsubishi ASX compact crossover. Another "global car for the regions" from Mitsubishi Motors and therefore named and specified accordingly, Mitsubishi ASX was first launched in Japan in February 2010 (as "RVR"). After its European premiere at the 2010 Geneva Motor Show, it will be retailed in Europe end of spring 2010.
From Concept-cX to ASX reality
Sharing the same evocative "Kawasemi Blue" introduction color, the new Mitsubishi ASX represents a marketable interpretation of the Concept-cX show car, unveiled at the 2007 Frankfurt Motor Show, whose success convinced MMC's management to turn it into a full-fledged production car.
Longer by nearly 20 cm (4.295 m vs the concept's 4.11 m), slightly higher (+ 6.5cm) and wider (+ 2cm), and featuring a more upright tailgate all for the sake of optimum packaging, Mitsubishi ASX shares nonetheless Concept-cX's basic design theme as well as its passenger car-like sure-footed stance.
Suggested by the gaping "Jet Fighter" grille - a nod to Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd.'s F-2 jet fighter and now a trademark feature for nearly all Mitsubishi Motors on-road vehicles in Europe (Colt, Lancer and Outlander) - this car-like "attitude" was a key direction for Mitsubishi designers: unencumbered by any marketing pressure to simulate an SUV look through heavy detailing (no need to with Pajero/Montero/Shogun and L200 already in the range...), they further developed Concept-cX's own vocabulary towards a less polarizing yet sharp, expressive and finely executed "sports hatch" with proper presence & substance.
Retaining Concept-cX's "compact wedge" design concept with its thrusting side character line, they optimized the overall shape, making the best use of a 14.5 cm longer wheelbase (2.67 m vs. 2.525 m) to create a lower and more balanced silhouette with a better integration of the bulging wheel arches. Accordingly, the roof line now flows down toward the rear of the car to enhance aerodynamic performance (Cd: 0.32) and to further highlight its dynamic profile.
At the front, the Jet Fighter grille appears identical to Lancer's or Outlander's. However, it is now framed within a more substantial looking clip, itself merging with a sculptured bonnet featuring a double bulge: this serves the dual purpose of contributing to better pedestrian safety, short overhang notwithstanding, and also to make the body more visible to the driver, improving maneuverability around town.
At the rear, the purpose was both to lower and widen the silhouette, whilst avoiding any sort of chunkiness resulting from the short overhang, hence the sharp aerodynamic lip at the bottom of the backlight, the slim slanted combination lamps as well as the wide trapezoidal license plate recess running in between.
Inside, the concept of sharp, sporty elegance continues with a clear emphasis on form, trim and material rather than the usual endless pursuit of fantasized SUV-ness.
Consistent with the exterior, Mitsubishi ASX's cabin reflects a clear sense of "dynamic quality" as expressed through the hooded meter cluster shared with Outlander, the soft padding around the center instrument panel itself extending to the door trim or the carefully applied silver accents either side of the audio system or along the door panels.
At the same time, items such as the chromed round module circling the shift lever, the motorbike inspiration for both the silver accents either side of the console and for the meters.
The texturing and materials were chosen to achieve the same right touch and appearance. Although the interior color scheme is based on a black monotone, contrasting use of textures and materials was made to generate dynamism.
The particular attention was paid to the soft trim for areas touched by the occupants. This led to the development of a new type of two-tone textured padding with contrastive undulations for a smart, sporty feel.
Lancer + Outlander
The latest vehicle developed from MMC's "Project Global" mid-size platform, Mitsubishi ASX aims at blending Lancer's passenger car on-road attitude with Outlander's commanding driving position and convenience of its clever AWC electronically-controlled 4-Wheel Drive system.
The Mitsubishi ASX offers the full palette of active & passive safety devices, including (availability according to model and market):
- 160° Super-HiD "Wide Vision" xenon headlamps
- Active Stability Control
- Traction Control
- Hill Start Assist system
- Electronic Brake Distribution
- Brake Assist
- Emergency Stop signal System
- 7 airbags (incl. driver knee airbag)
- Low impact MIVEC Diesel
With Mitsubishi ASX and later on during the second half of 2010 in the related Lancer family - this "4N13" set of powerplants is a derivative of MMC's recent petrol engine and features innovative technologies, including a new variable geometry turbocharger as well as high-efficiency combustion characteristics that stem from the application of MMC's and MHI's own analytic technology.
Highlight of the technological showcase is Mitsubishi's proprietary MIVEC variable valve timing system: a world first for passenger car Diesel engines.
Of strategic importance in Europe against high profile competitors in a very competitive segment, the very smooth running 1,798 cc "4N13" Mitsubishi low impact Diesel MIVEC engine will be further supported in its environmental mission by the adoption - standard on all versions - of a full ClearTec low CO2 package, including:
- "Automatic Stop & Go" system
- Closed-flow Diesel particulate filter
- Electric power steering
- Generation Control System
- LED rear lamps (for low consumption)
- Low resistance tires
The Mitsubishi ASX proposed with a new 1.6 liter DOHC 16v MIVEC engine: another in-house development, this time of Mitsubishi's own 1.5 liter engine as fitted to Colt. In this Mitsubishi ASX application, it will also be made available with the full ClearTec package and be offered with a 5-speed manual transmission.
Stylishly restrained, Mitsubishi ASX's interior is also a very pleasant place to lounge in, whether in its layout, its functionality or its features.
The best usage of its long 2.67 m wheelbase, the 5-seater Mitsubishi ASX brings a comprehensive set of utility features well suited to both its compact size and the likely loading needs of its potential customers in its 416 L at rear seat back angle at 17 degrees (forward position) (393L at rear seat back angle at 23 degrees) trunk:
- Adjustable rear back rests
- Rear armrest with:
- 60:40 split rear seat,
- Easy-fold rear bench,
- Under floor tray (approx. 30l),
- Convenience hooks + lighting
The host of equipments, even from the entry model featuring standard items such as: radio CD w/MP3, AUX-in and 4 speakers, manual air conditioning, 7 airbags, Active Stability Control & Traction Control systems, etc
Up the line, automatic air conditioning, rain & dusk sensors, cruise control, multi-function steering wheel, rear parking monitor, Bluetooth™ & USB connectivity, privacy glass, Super HiD "Wide Vision" xenon headlamps, keyless operation system, engine stop-start button, leather upholstery, Mitsubishi Multi-Communication System with HDD navigation system & music server, Rockford Fosgate™ Premium audio, etc are also available with Mitsubishi ASX.