Drive­way

Fremantle Gazette - - DRIVEWAY -

I CAN’T get over the price.

This is why Chi­nese utes have strug­gled to gain a foothold here.

The Tri­ton GLX+ dou­ble-cab has been $34,990 drive-away with auto for seem­ingly an eter­nity.

It un­der­cuts main­stream ri­vals by roughly $5000 to $10,000 and is al­most as cheap as the Chi­nese pick-ups.

And yet with the Tri­ton you get Ja­panese qual­ity – even though it’s made in Thai­land, as with most of its peers – plus a five-year war­ranty.

It also has capped price ser­vic­ing; for three years.

With its sin­gu­lar styling and long ute tub, the Tri­ton won’t win beauty con­tests.

But buy­ers are get­ting the last laugh.

It has one of the tight­est turn­ing cir­cles among its peers (11.8m), so ne­go­ti­at­ing carparks and U-turns is a cinch.

It rides on com­par­a­tively small 16-inch wheels and the tyre side­walls are tall so it irons out the bumps nicely. Ap­ple CarPlay and An­droid Auto were added to the in­fo­tain­ment as part of a run­ning change ear­lier this year.

The down­side is that the vol­ume knob dis­ap­peared in the process, mak­ing it fid­dly to ad­just quickly via the touch­screen on bumpy roads. Sure, there’s the tog­gle switch on the steer­ing wheel, but that too is not as fast and as easy to use as the deleted knob.

A rear cam­era is stan­dard and the GLX+ also gets alloy wheels, side steps and rear bumper.

This may come as a shock to many but the Tri­ton’s 2.4-litre turbo diesel is a sweetie.

It’s quiet, re­fined and fru­gal to boot.

The six-speed man­ual is a gem, although most buy­ers opt for the five-speed auto, es­pe­cially as Mit­subishi keeps do­ing a ‘free auto up­grade’ every other month.

As it pro­pels one of the light­est utes among its peers, the 2.4 also ac­cel­er­ates smartly.

No one makes the per­fect ute but the Tri­ton comes close. for the money.

First wish: give the Tri­ton a tougher ap­pear­ance, per­haps bor­rowed from or in­spired by the Pa­jero Sport.

Sec­ond: a dig­i­tal speed read­out.

Given our strict speed en­force­ment, every 1km/h in­cre­ment counts.

So, Mit­subishi, how about us­ing that dig­i­tal dis­play in be­tween the ana­log di­als to give us a speed read­out?

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