It’s one of the most affordable small SUVs on the market, so let’s see how far your money gets you.
What stands out
The Mitsubishi ASX is classed as a small SUV, though it’s one of the roomier options in its segment. It drives nicely on country roads with good steering and decent power especially in diesel form. Every ASX has cruise control, a reversing camera, Bluetooth phone connectivity and climate control air conditioning. Safety features includes seven airbags and stability control, and it’s covered by a five-year, 100,000km warranty from Mitsubishi.
Controls and displays inside the ASX are logically laid out and the front seats aren’t too bad, though they could use more lateral support. Cabin noise can be a bit of a problem with loud tyre roar on the freeway, and around town it lacks the refined ride of some competitors, but it does a generally good job of keeping passengers comfortable at open-road speeds.
ASX comes with either a 2.0-litre petrol engine with a front-wheel drive CVT gearbox, or with a stronger 2.2-litre diesel engine and a six-speed automatic with all-wheel drive for better grip on gravel roads. From there you have a choice between the entry LS model and the premium XLS. The higher spec XLS is significantly more expensive and adds leather seats, a panoramic glass roof, keyless entry and start, automatic headlights and wipers, and satellite navigation.
For overall cost-effectiveness, we’d buy the ASX LS 2WD petrol. It’s the most affordable and represents the best value of the range. More expensive ASX models don’t stack up as well against their newer competitors, but the base ASX with its keen driveaway pricing makes sense.
The ASX is getting on in years and isn’t quite as well-rounded as some other small SUVs, but for those on a tight budget there’s a lot to like about the cabin space, safety features, new-car warranty and value that the base model offers.