The Pajero has been around long enough to nearly qualify for a pension at the very least should have lots of long service leave, but it was recently given a freshen up for the 2016 model year so I was interested to see whether the Pajero could still cut it.
This is a little bit different then my other reviews as I was able to test 2 different models the entry level GLX and the range topping Exceed model.
While the Pajero hasn’t changed much on the outside I’ve always liked the look of the Pajero so I have no complaints, the big news was the waft of tech additions and namely the addition of Android Auto and apple carplay which adds a new level connectivity to the Pajero.
Slipping inside the Pajero looks pretty familiar, while it may look a touch dated everything is still functional and with easy reach of the driver.
The leather clad seats on the Exceed and Cloth seats on the GLX are comfortable even on long trips and between 2 cars we managed to do just 2200km in them so did actually test out their long distance comfort.
The GLX comes with a leather clad steering wheel and Exceed takes it step further with wood and leather, both are the perfect thickness and comfortable to hold and it’s really a personal choice which is better I liked the GLX wheel while my wife liked the Exceeds better.
There is plenty of leg and head room and while the electric adjustment of the exceeds seats made it easier to find the perfect position, the manual adjustment on the GLX wasn’t exactly terrible.
Leg room in the back is great and the kids had no complaints even after they spent 1200 km in it, the back offers a great amount of storage and it does offer 7 seat flexability I found the rear seats didn’t have quite as much room as say my Captiva’s rear seats but my youngest daughter did ride in their and she didn’t complain.
The big ticket item on the inside is the addition of Android Auto and Apple car play to the audio system which is extremely good.
The system basically lets the driver safety access such thing as access navigation and other compatible apps on their smartphone, make and receive phone calls
send and receive text messages and listen to or stream music. All with a touch of the screen, steering wheel buttons or via voice control.
It means connect your phone via the USB slot in the glovebox, close it up and leave your phone out of sight and mind for the whole trip.
I don’t have an apple iwhatever so I can’t comment on how good that works, but I loved how Android auto works and the flexibility of it while you can use google play to play music, I don’t but I loved how I could access and play music via my Pandora and Spotify apps.
The satnav is via google maps and works exceptionally good even in the country areas i was in, the beauty about this sytem is never need to update your sat nav software. Although the big downside is that if you don’t have reception you are out of luck.
A lot of my music is on USB sticks and the system made it so easy for me to switch between all my music either via the apps or my USB stick.
The sound from the standard 6 speaker system in the GLX but the sound from the Rockford Acoustic Design premium audio in the Exceed took it to another level thanks to it’s 12 speakers and subwoofer.
Under the bonnet the Pajero is powered by Mitsubishi’s 3.2L turbo diesel engine pumping out 147kW@3800 rpm and 441Nm @200 rpm, while this engine has remained unchanged for a few years you know it’s going to be absolutely bullet proof and both cars performed flawlessly.
The engine develops it’s max low down in the rev range so the Pajero has the power where it really counts.
On the road the Pajero rides great for a 4×4 you do feel a few of the bigger bumps but the suspension does a great job of absorbing them and there is no hint of crash or bang being transmitted into the cabin from the bigger ones.
The steering isn’t particularly sharp but it’s not a race car it does take a few turns from lock to lock and it’s a little heavy when parking but not overly so and you can still do it one handed, In corners as you would expect there is some lean but its not overly bad or off putting.
Now while the Pajero proved to be capable on road it’s off road where it really excels and really the big reason why you would buy one in the first place.
Now while I didn’t get to do a lot of offroading in it and didn’t go near any mud unfortunately I did get to drive it up and down the beach for a few hours and all I can say is the Pajero just lapped it up, even when the sand got really soft the Pajero just kept plugging away without an issue and I dont think I ever got to half throttle even in the real soft bits.
Safety wise the Pajero comes standard with a long list of safety features including .Driver & front passenger SRS airbags, Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD), Smart Brake, Multi mode Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Emergency Brake Assist System (EBA), Active Stability Control (ASC), Active Traction Control (ATC), ISO-Fix child seat mountings. The GLX looses a few points for no rear parking sensors it does get some back with the standard fit Reverse camera, while the Exceed scores full marks for having both fitted as standard.
While the Pajero has been around a long time the latest upgrades brings it closer to the current age and proves that there is still life in the old dog yet. While they say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks the case with the Pajero is why teach it new ones when it performs the old ones perfectly and those tricks are enough to take you a lot of places both on and off road in this country that other vehicles can’t and do comfortably.
If your looking for an SUV or 4×4 that can take you off the beaten track then you would be mad not to take a look at the Pajero while it might not look as pretty on the inside as some other cars there no doubting the the Pajero is still a very good option specially when the road get rough.
For more info on the Pajero check out their website www.mitsubishi-motors.com.au
2106 Mitusbishi Pajero
Price: From $53,990 (GLX) $65,990 (Exceed)
Standard Features GLX
Front skid plate, Engine under cover, Fuel tank protector, Front and rear tow hooks, Front free wheeling differential, Centre differential, Rear differential lock. LED Daytime Running Lamps (DRL), Fog lamps (front and rear), Climate control air conditioning, Front and rear zone air conditioning controls, Rear air conditioning ducts.
Halogen headlamps, Cruise control, Central door locking with keyless entry, Power windows front and rear, Cloth seat trim, USB Input, Antenna integrated in glass, Multi information display, Bluetooth phone connectivity, audio streaming with voice control, Smartphone Link Display Audio with 7″ touch screen, Digital Audio Broadcast (DAB) radio, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay.
Standard Features Exceed
Front skid plate, Engine under cover, Fuel tank protector, Front and rear tow hooks, Front free wheeling differential, Centre differential, Rear differential lock. High Intensity Discharge (HID) headlamps, Headlamp washers, LED Daytime Running Lamps (DRL), Fog lamps (front and rear),Automatic dusk sensing headlamps, Automatic rain sensing wipers, Cruise control, Central door locking with keyless entry, Electric sunroof with slide and tilt, Power windows front and rear.
Alloy sports pedals, Wood and leather steering wheel, Puddle lights, 4WD indicator lamp, Leather seat trim, Heated seats, Rockford Acoustic Design premium audio, 12 speakers (includes subwoofer), USB Input, Antenna integrated in glass, Multi information display, Bluetooth phone connectivity, audio streaming with voice control, Smartphone Link Display Audio with 7″ touch screen, Digital Audio Broadcast (DAB) radio, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay.