Most car companies are keen on fleet sales and Mitsubishi was up-front in saying the specifications for the new Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab ute were configured to suit the demands of those major corporate buyers like mining companies and utility providers.
Private buyers too have long been fans of the four-seat Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab and its return in the 2011MN Triton lineup will be a popular addition.
Mitsubishi Triton Overview
Reputations count amongst ute buyers and Mitsubishi’s Triton has an enviable track record in Australia. Not surprisingly, of all the utes sold in Australia last year, Mitsubishi Triton accounted for more than 13 per cent of 4X2 and more than 14 per cent of 4X4.
But the popular Club Cab layout has been missing from the current lineup until now.
For those who carry occasional passengers or those who have a few extra goodies they like to be secure when parked, the Mitsubishi Club Cab offers the required combination of seats and extra cabin space.
Mitsubishi Triton’s reputation for indestructibility, off-road agility and on-road comfort also scores big with ute buyers.
Mitsubishi Triton Engine
Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab uses the familiar 2.5-litre, four-cylinder, turbocharged common rail diesel engine.
Maximum power is 400kW at 4,000rpm, and while peak torque of 400Nm is achieved at 2,000rpm, more than 350nm is available from about 1500rpm to 3400rpm. That broad torque spread is what most who carry heavy loads are looking for and is also handy in off-road conditions – just as you’d expect with the Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab.
In fact all Mitsubishi Tritons instantly give you the impression you could do a a lap of Australia and never even bother to lift the bonnet - the 2.5-litre is a good performer (although a little noisy when pushed) and affords the Triton as towing capacity of 2,700kgs – 3,000kgs (depending on the model).
Mitsubishi Triton The Interior
Those two fold-down rear seats in the Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab are very well engineered. You can use them for occasional passengers, but many ute buyers we spoke to said they’re good for keeping items like tool boxes and eskys upright and in-place while driving and secure when you lock the doors while parked.
The extra interior space behind the front row seats (without reducing the tray capacity as four-door utes do) is a handy attribute for the Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab.
Otherwise the Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab carries identical specifications to the GLX model single cab 4X4. That means easy-clean, high-quality vinyl floor covering and a standard bench seat (although our test car was fitted with the optional sports seat pack which brings individual sports seats with slide and recline functions plus carpet floor mats).
We found those sports seats in the Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab to be amongst the most comfortable of the current ute models – nicely supportive on long journeys and trimmed in high quality cloth.
The three-spoke steering wheel adjusts for rake and has convenient buttons on the right spoke to adjust the cruise control. Instruments are the conventional two-gauges with fuel tank and temperature displays to the right.
Centre console sees the air-conditioning and controls for the two-speaker audio system which is compatible for USB, iPod and MP3 plus Bluetooth hands-free telephone operation.
Mitsubishi Triton On The Road
“When the going gets tough, the tough get going” they say and if we were asked to choose a ute for an extended trip to the outback, the Mitsubishi Triton would be close to the top of the list. Fortunately during our time behind the wheel of the Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab, the most demanding job encountered was some light flooding during Melbourne’s summer deluges, even so we got the impression the Triton could just about cross the English Channel.
The standout feature was the 2.5-litre turbo-diesel which although a bit noisy when pressed hard, highlighted its more than ample 400Nm of torque with strong response at all engine speeds.
Mitsubishi uses elliptic leaf springs in the rear (often favoured by those who use their utes for load carrying) and, combined with the double wishbone front arrangement, delivered a handy ride compromise when not loaded. More a work vehicle than some rival recreational-biased utes, some ‘softies’ from the city who drove the Mitsubishi Triton Club cab found its ride a tad firm.
Our Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab test car rode on 205/R16C Bridgestone Dueller rubber which afforded good levels of grip on sealed roads although serious off-roaders might opt for meatier alternatives.
However that combination on the Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab we tested provided a four-wheel-drive ute with leaf-sprung rear which steered and pointed with praiseworthy precision – a trait shared with Mitsubishi’s Triton-based Challenger SUV.
Around town and in car parks, the 11.8-metre turning circle of the Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab did require a lot of steering wheel work to negotiate tight spots – all 4WD utes are the same.
For off-road use, there’s Mitsubishi’s usual Easy-Select 4WD system and the Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab provides ground clearance of 200mm, an approach angle of 33 degrees and a break-over angle of 27 degrees (naturally the departure angle depends on the type of rear tray you select).
Mitsubishi Triton Challenges
Mitsubishi Triton’s reputation for toughness and off-road ability is beyond question. Our only points deduction is NVH which doesn’t quite match the very best in the segment.
Mitsubishi Triton Verdict
Go anywhere four-wheel-drive ability, that ‘workaholic’ 2.5-litre turbo diesel and the added versatility/practicality of the Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab’s extra interior space and clever second row seats all add up to a handy package.
It’s tough and equipped for optimum work or recreation.
Mitsubishi Triton The Competition
Mitsubishi Triton takes on Toyota HiLux, Nissan Navara, Mazda’s BT50 and the Ford Ranger (the last two about the be replaced by all-new models).
The Mitsubishi Triton Club Cab as tested is based on the GLX variant and priced at $38,990 it stacks-up competitively against segment rivals – best to shop around because there are deals to be done.