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Aug 19, 2010
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Not even the recent trend of carjackers targeting SUVs can stop Mitsubishi from launching a new and exciting model in that particular category. The Japanese carmaker  recently unveiled the all-new ASX or Active Sport Crossover. [firstpara]

The ASX, much like the Toyota RAV4, the Honda CR-V, and the Nissan X-Trail, is actually a compact SUV that offers both the ruggedness of utility vehicles and the drivability of a sporty sedan.

The ASX looks most similar to the RAV4 in terms of its stance and body angles. It is not to say that this isn’t a car with its own identity.

The front section carries a “Jet fighter” grille reminiscent of the one found in the Lancer EX. Looking at it from the front, the car looks fierce with the steeply angled headlamps and a grille that looks like it just wants to punch somebody.

From the side, you’ll notice how the curving roof line and the flow of lines from the rear to the front lend the car a very dynamic and sporty feel. The car’s shape is a direct result of Mitsubishi’s goal for superior aerodynamics that seeks to reduce drag at the front, the sides, and the rear.

The ASX is also equipped with fantastic 17-inch aluminum wheels that complete the car’s handsome good looks. Compared to the aforementioned competitors, we think that the ASX has the cleanest design and the most exciting exterior aesthetics. Of course, in this ultra-competitive sector, it might simply be a matter of taste.

Inside, it feels spacious enough for passengers and for cargo, though in terms of feel, there’s nothing in here that would really separate it from the rest of pack. The second row seats can be folded flat to open up a total of 384 liters of cargo capacity.

An adjustable steering wheel, and a 6.2 inch touch screen LCD monitor that has a built-in DVD/CD/MP3/WMA player with FM/AM tuner, with GPS, and iPod and USB connectivity come standard. The top-of-the-line model though, the GLS SE 4x4, features a Push Start/Stop Engine button.

The ASX offers a very respectable 4B11 2.0-liter engine (the same one found on the Lancer EX) that has been retuned to match the ASX’ weight and specific drivetrain. The engine produces 150 Ps at 6,000 rpm and torque at 197 N-m at 4,200 rpm thanks in part to the MIVEC or Mitsubishi Innovative Valve timing Electronic Control technology.

As for its transmission, two options are available: the 5-speed manual transmission and the Continuously Variable Transmission with 6-speed Sportronic mode.

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You also have the option to get the steering column mounted magnesium alloy paddle shifters for those of you wanting to feel like an F1 driver.

Admittedly, the ASX won’t be able to rocket around highways, but the power it offers is still more than an adequate for an exhilarating drive. The transmission runs quite smoothly as do the ride comfort its MacPherson strut provides.

All that said, the Mitsubishi ASX is another fine entry into the compact SUV market. As we said, it’s going to boil down to a matter of taste, because all the available choices are all well-built. But here’s the clincher: you definitely can’t go wrong with the ASX if what you want is something fresher than the rest of them.

The all-new ASX is available in 3 variants: ASX GLX 4x2 MT, ASX GLS 4x2 CVT, and ASX GLS SE 4x4 CVT and comes in six colors: Quartz Brown Metallic, Virgil Gray, Carbon Black, Kingfisher Blue, Amazon Red and Biscuit White. Suggested introductory prices are P1,145,000 for the GLX 4x2 MT , P1,225,000 for the GLS 4x2 CVT, and P1,498,000 for the GLS SE 4x4 model. Visit your nearest Mitsubishi Motors dealers or check out www.mitsubishi-motors.com.ph for more details.

WORDS BY: GELO GONZALES

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