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Saturday, March 5, 2022

No, The Philippine Spec 2022 Mitsubishi Xpander Doesn't Have A CVT


In case you missed it, Mitsubishi Motors Philippines has just opened reservations for the 2022 (officially, 2023 per MMPC) Xpander. With it being the best-selling nameplate for Mitsubishi locally, a lot’s riding on this MPV.

Right now, you’ve probably started to read some first impressions of the 2022 Xpander too. For us, our first drive will come at a later time because frankly, you don’t get much from just driving it around in circles.

If you really want an honest assessment, well, it can definitely be said that the chassis engineers aced their homework. Compared to the current Xpander, the upcoming 2022 model corners with much more authority. It doesn’t lean as much when pushed to its limits, and the ride is actually more supple. It’s also far less “floaty” than before which should equate to better stability, especially at higher speed.

While no one’s questioning the 2022 Xpander’s suspension bits, there have been questions regarding its powertrain, specifically when it comes to its transmission. During the drive, it was noticeable that the gearbox didn’t feel like a CVT—it had stepped gearing and all. Frankly, it was amazing and I myself was ready to declare it as one of the best applications of a CVT, bar none.

But when the guys from Mitsubishi Motors Philippines were asked, they confirmed—more than once—that the Philippine-spec 2022 Xpander doesn’t use a CVT. Instead, it carries over its 4-speed automatic.

Well, that explains it, I thought.

It’s quite surprising given the global model launched in Indonesia comes equipped with a CVT. However, when asked to explain why the Philippine model still carries the 4-speed automatic, that decision was more down to Mitsubishi’s regional product planning team. Based on their studies, the Xpander’s gearbox was never a cause for concern. It was rarely mentioned as an area where Mitsubishi’s MPV needed improvement. In fact, during its fuel run done during its market launch way back in 2018, it managed 22.94 km/L. Why fix if it ain’t broke, right?

Instead, work was done to improve the Xpander’s kit across the line-up. For example, 17-inch alloy wheels now come standard across the line-up as do a 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and a rear parking camera.

24 comments:

  1. Ah I get it now sir Uly, though some PH automotive sites say it now uses a CVT so they are wrong and your the one is right. Thanks for your clarifying.

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    1. I was ready to say it's the best CVT I've tried. But it's not hahaha. It's the same 4-speed 'box.

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    2. The fact that it feels better than any fake-shifting rubberbanding CVT tells you all you need to know about CVTs. Again, just to emphasize, many manufacturers shifted to CVTs for low-torque applications purely for cost-cutting reasons, it has less moving parts, costs less to assemble & are essentially disposable. The claimed fuel economy gains wy CVTs can be realized with conventional torque converter geared ATs & DCTs, it just has to have enough gears, 6-speed or above.

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  2. The 4 speed 'box is a deal breaker for me. I'll take the new avanza over this. But the 2nd gen brv is the best in its class

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    1. Or wait instead for the Veloz...

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    2. Keane Calimlim Don't put your hopes on the Veloz as it will not come to the country due to the low sales of the Avanza Veloz.

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    3. Victor Torres that's why TMP is not launching the Veloz kasi ayaw lang nila masapawan si Rush?

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    4. Or they just want to Extend the Sales Rally?

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  3. The best CVT, after all, isn't a CVT 😅

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  4. Both the CVT and the 4-speed AT have pros and cons. How about a 6-speed AT instead?

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    1. That's a problem mitsubishi and nissan has. they have the same supplier(jatco) and most of their products are quite old design even the newest cvt's come from last gen lancers/sentra and they don't have 6 speed automatics in their current portfolio. plus most of their manufacturing hubs in SEA of Jatco produces CVT's. The 8 speed in the Montero is Aisin sourced(Builder of Toyota's transmission)

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  5. MMPC can say whatever they want,but the real reason why it uses a 4 speed is because they still have a large stock of these old transmissions. Eventually they will shift to newer transmissions, but they needed to dump their old 4 speeds somewhere... and they chose the Philippines. Many car manufacturers take advantage of Filipinos' blind loyalty, which is disappointing

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    1. Is this model assembled locally? If so, your theory may be true. If not, it's purely a product planning decision by MMPC relayed to their Indonesian assemblers. MMPC may be anticipating lesser warranty claims if they stick to the tried & tested torque converter equipped 4AT. After all, it worked with Toyota PH for decades.

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  6. The Xpander is a very great car, has a conventional 4AT and MIVEC engine, but the newly-launched Geely Emgrand (yes, only NA engine, and yes, it's not a Mistubishi) is still a compelling buy. Built on the same platform as the splendid Coolray, plus luxury cabin materials and tech at a very affordable price, the Emgrand challenges both MPVs & subcompact crossovers. Good job Geely.

    P.S. Hope Geely will offer in the future a turbocharged Emgrand.

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  7. I Guess Veloz deserves a second chance... I am telling yu Kramark, you are stupid so much!

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  8. I am.planning to.buy a.new car but now iam.confused which is.better fuel save expander or avanza

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    1. Better buy the Mitsubishi Expander. It ticks all the boxes Dimensions comfortability Powertrain and the Looks Design bested Any Subcompact MPV in the Market.

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  9. Another slightly underspeccee car, but at least not as worse as the Suzuki Swift refresh. That ca reminds me of how badly-barebones the Mitsubishi Mirage G4 is.

    Unfortunately, we guys better have to wait for the all-new Avanza or Rush instead.


    PS: Watch out for the annoying Geely fanbois plaguing every new post here in Carguide, copy-pasting their comments.

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    1. The Suzuki Swift is a good car. Ramon Bautista owns one and he really likes it (though his Swift has a 1.5 engine).

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    2. I drove a Swift before and in terms of driving dynamics, even though it's not Mazda levels, it drives just fine. I cannot say the same on other features, especially on safety.

      Barebones at best. But at least it's not worse than the other locally made Hyundai car with basically zero features aside from a 1-din radio. Not even airbags. It's like a speeding coffin.

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  10. Do you want a CVT? Is the CVT lower cost or better performance?

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    1. CVT's are usually used for better fuel efficiency, but has it's downs as well especially rubber banding

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    2. For toyotas, CVT are no brainers in terms of transmission reliability and fuel economy. For Mitsubishi and in an extent Nissan, reliability is a bit of miss because of the issues with the quality of the JATCO produced transmission. Aisin(toyota subsidiary) Transmissions are bullet proof heck even the Montero Uses the 8 speed sourced from them.

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  11. should have at least 5 speed naman sana :/

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