Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Review: 2017 Mitsubishi Strada GT


To a huge degree, the 2017 Strada GT answers all the criticisms leveled against Mitsubishi’s pickup truck offering when it first came out two years ago. From the removal of the toothy chrome grille to the application of the latest MIVEC clean diesel engine, the Strada GT has finally hit all the right notes and this should easily sway the buying public to take notice of it once more.

The 2017 Strada continues with its science fiction/concept car inspired look, but this year, the chrome has been toned down. There’s still some shiny bits found on the side mirrors and door handles, but the single biggest offender—the chrome grille—has been replaced by a matte black number. It’s surprising how a single design element has managed to change the Strada’s entire character, but it’s very effective in this case. Aside from the new grille, this top-of-the-line model also gets a front nudge bar (where you can install off-road spot lamps), 17-inch two-tone Diamond Vane wheels, and a rear bed roll bar.



Built from the ground-up as an “everyday pickup truck”, the Strada’s proportions prioritize usability than outright hauling capacity. Though the bed itself can still carry a good amount of cargo (it’s larger than the model it replaces), the news here remains the cabin’s space and execution. Maximizing the compact wheelbase, the interior is car-like. The steering wheel offers adjustment to both tilt and reach while the driver’s seat itself moves electrically. The gauges look plain, but are extremely legible while all the other controls are within easy reach. The front seats are also good, offering body-hugging bolstering and support; but it’s in the back where the Strada has a big advantage. The knee room is already great, but it also comes with a comfy seat pitch and generous cushion length. Indeed, it’s actually possible to spend long drives seated as a rear passenger without complaints.

For 2017, Mitsubishi has dismissed its long-serving 4D56 engine for the all-new 2.4-liter MIVEC clean diesel engine. Fitted in the Montero Sport SUV as well, it’s easily one of the smoothest, quietest diesels ever put in a pickup. It’s quiet at idle with minimal clatter and it doesn’t get much louder as the speeds go up. Aside from its refinement, there’s good pull too. Granted the power doesn’t come in linearly, it’s still there. Feathering the throttle and keeping the engine at its sweet spot are your best bets to keep the pace going.




Mated to the 4N15 engine is a 5-speed automatic. It’s 3 gears down compared to the Montero Sport, but the revised ratios do maximize the engine’s power. Though generally responsive, once or twice, you’ll catch yourself expecting an upshift only for the transmission to hold that gear a bit longer. Apart from better power, it also improves the fuel economy: 9.43 km/L or an 8 percent improvement over the previous GLS Sport V.

The Strada remains surprisingly maneuverable for its size. The hydraulic assist means a weightier feel compared to an electric assist set-up, but it feels lightened up for 2017. Compared to other pickups, the ride is cushier, but it can get unsettled over lumpy, corrugated surfaces and deep ruts. On the other hand, it can carry more speed through curves with far less drama. The body itself feels solid, but the numerous cabin rattles do little to reinforce that.




Although Mitsubishi has yet to adopt a fancy terrain-based 4WD system, the Super Select 4WD-II in the Strada does the job just as well. This system combines traditional helical gears (Torsen-type) with a viscous coupling. This system is deemed the best setup because it allows the Strada to react quicker on changing surfaces such as slippery or rugged terrain. Not only does this system allow a locked differential like a typical pickup, but it also enables its 4WD system to work even on paved roads. Together with this 4WD system is the adoption of Mitsubishi’s Active Stability and Traction Control or M-ASTC system. New for this year, it uses a comprehensive network of sensors to prevent drifting out of control by managing engine output, power distribution, and even braking force. In short, the Strada GT is always pointed in the right direction whatever the road or weather condition. What’s more, it helps maximize the full potential of the engine with complete confidence.

At P 1,655,000 the 2017 Strada GT represents a substantial P 215,000 price jump compared to the GLS Sport V before. But it still manages to play the value card quite well. On top of items such as the multi-information trip computer, dual zone climate control, push-button engine start/stop, HID headlights with LED DRLs, GPS navigation, and reversing camera; this year, you also get leather seats, a power driver’s seat, automatic headlights, rain-sensing wipers, 7 airbags, tire pressure sensors, traction and stability control, and of course, the new engine. The only problem is that with the amount of toys, some don’t place nice with each other. In this case, it’s the keyless entry and alarm system. If you use the door handle button to lock, you must also use it to unlock; if you use the key fob to unlock, you must also use it to lock. Any other combination will cause the alarm to sound off. It’s a minor issue for sure, but it’s an annoyance nonetheless.




After all’s said and done though, the 2017 Mitsubishi Strada GT is worthy of another good look. In the increasingly competitive pickup truck segment, it’s finally come through as a well-packaged, well-equipped, and now, modernly powered and nicely styled offering too. It may not have the same credentials marketing and PR people like to harp about, but it delivers on where it counts. It’s well-suited to the needs and demands of everyday life that it’s hard to find another pickup as well balanced as this one.



2017 Mitsubishi Strada GT
Ownership 2017 Mitsubishi Strada GT
Year Introduced 2015
Vehicle Classification Pickup
The Basics
Body Type 4-door pickup
Seating 5
Engine / Drive F/4WD, Low, Locking
Under the Hood
Displacement (liters) 2.4
Aspiration Turbo
Fuel Delivery Common Rail Direct Injection
Layout / # of Cylinders I4
BHP @ rpm 181 @ 3,500
Nm @ rpm 430 @ 2,500
Fuel / Min. Octane Diesel
Transmission 5 AT
Cruise Control Yes
Fuel Economy @ Ave. Speed 9.43 km/L @ 15 km/h
Dimensions and Weights
Length (mm) 5,370
Width (mm) 1,815
Height (mm) 1,780
Wheelbase (mm) 3,000
Curb Weight (kg) 1,850
Suspension and Tires
Front Suspension Independent, Double Wishbone
Rear Suspension Semi-Elliptic Leaf Spring
Front Brakes Vented Disc
Rear Brakes Drum
Tires Toyo Open Country A28 245/65 R 17 S (f & r)
Wheels Alloy
Safety Features
Airbags 7
Anti-Lock Brakes (ABS) Yes
Traction / Stability Control Yes
Parking Sensors No, with Camera
Other Safety Features Hill Start Assist
Tire Pressure Monitoring System
Exterior Features
Headlights HID
Fog Lamps Yes, Front and Rear
Auto Lights Yes
Rain-sensing Wipers Yes
Interior Features
Steering Wheel Adjust Tilt/Telescopic
Steering Wheel Material Leather
Seating Adjustment Electric (driver)
Seating Surface Leather
Folding Rear Seat Yes
On-Board Computer Yes
Convenience Features
Power Steering Yes
Power Door Locks Yes
Power Windows Yes
Power Mirrors Yes, with Fold
Climate Control Yes, Dual
Audio System Stereo
DVD
MP3
Aux
USB
Bluetooth
GPS
Mirror Link
# of Speakers 6
Steering Controls Yes

13 comments:

  1. Next to Review. Toyota Hiace Super Grandia, Mitsubishi Montero Sport GTV & Chevrolet Colorado LTZ

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  2. Sir Uly, I'm planning to get a pickup. Which is better the Mivec Strada or Navara? 99% urban use only but I'm ditching my car due to the flood that abruptly surfaces during heavy rains. I probably will buy the 4X2 version

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    Replies
    1. If purely urban, I'd go with Strada. It's got much better features and it is actually easier to drive. The Navara has the better ride.

      If you're just going to use your pickup to replace your car, why not go for a pickup based SUV? It will be more comfortable.

      Delete
    2. Thanks. We already have an SUV (2015 Santa Fe) so we don't need another one. How about the Dmax? Can it still compete against these newer pickups? The other pickups (ranger and Hilux) are out of consideration due to the poor service center and I still couldn't forget about the bad ride of my Dad's Hilux.

      Delete
    3. Yeah, the 2017 Isuzu Dmax is very good. Try to search for it, don't forget to include "2017".

      Actually, the Hilux is good in terms of reliability, parts availability, and resale value. The only problem is the hard ride. I too drive a Hilux. It is because it's build for hauling but you can always improve the ride of your Hilux just by changing all the shock absorbers.

      Ranger is a good truck too, when they're still new and low on mileage. It's just that, their reliability isn't that solid as compared to Japanese brands (esp. the engine) and parts are so rare you have to order them abroad and it's really expensive compare to others.

      But if you're rich, maybe not a problem for you.

      Delete
  3. Replies
    1. yes fugly front layout is the downside but this 4N15 engine is better than or more refined than the latest Toyota Hilux GD engine

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  4. I just noticed the plate. Is that the design of the recently mandated plate by the LTO?

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    Replies
    1. The unit already has an OR/CR and it's dated before February 15. So, no. It's not the new mandated plate standard. It does contain all the necessary information to avoid potential harassment.

      Delete
  5. How about the water wading capability of the new Mitsubishi Strada? Can it match the Ford Ranger and Chevrolet Colorado?
    Godbless!

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  6. First of all you need to contact the local towing company obviously. Another great way of churning out some cash out of the disposal of the vehicle is by contacting a nationwide service provider.
    Comments for this one

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  7. Hi i am planning to buy pick up strada gls 2.5 mt 2wd. Can i have advantage and disadvantage of picking this over toyota hilux2.4 mt 2wd. Thanks

    ReplyDelete