THE OFF-ROADING ICON MITSHUBISI PAJERO SWBPosted On: May 11, 2019 By : AutoLife Team
The Pajero is a name that has been around for what seems an eternity now. Truth be told it was probably introduced before most of the people reading this was born, which was in 1982. It has been in production for 37 years now and there must be a good reason why this vehicle is still present in the market. We can still see the early 90’s model running around in the steers in unbelievable condition, this shows how well it was engineered and built. The first introduced Mitsubishi Pajero back in 1982 was a three door Short Wheel Base (SWB) model and coincidentally we were given the SWB model to test drive as well. The Pajero has been one of the off-roading icons since its introduction and we were more than eager to see what the vehicle had to offer.
The exterior has only been mildly updated in the last few years and the design has stayed true to its concept from the beginning. The boxy proportions might not be everyone’s taste but this insures maximum space and comfort for the occupants of the vehicle.
The LED DRLS (Daytime Running Lamps) and the HID Headlamps add to the modern touch. The 17-inch rims with big beefy sidewalls does the job well; the reason for big sidewalls is for improved off-roading capability as they absorb impact better.
There are side steps on either side of the vehicle to make it easier for people to get in and out of the Pajero, which has a 235mm of ground clearance. This coupled with 36.7 degree approach angle and 34.9 degree departure angle helps is taking on rough terrain. The SWB comes with a three door setup and is considerably shorter than the 5 door, 7 seater Long Wheel Base (LWB) version. Moving to the rear end of the vehicle, the spare wheel is still mounted to the tailgate which we really like the look of.
The interior like the exterior has been slightly updated from the previous years to add more modern features but still has the classic Pajero feel to it. The interior feels well built and has that premium feel to it. The leather wrapped steering wheel feels very nice to hold and has all the necessary buttons well placed so that you don’t have to take your hands off the steering wheel while driving the Pajero. There are two displays stacked above each other, the one on the top is a multi-information display that gives us a lot of information such as the direction (East, West, North & South) we are moving towards, the altitude elevation of our current location, outside temperature, time, etc. all these information comes in handy when exploring new terrains in this vehicle. The second display is the touchscreen infotainment system which also doubles up as the reverse camera screen. The system is slick and easy to use with the main functions laid out neatly in the menu.
The gear selector is a big chunky shifter and right next to it is a second shifter. While most modern vehicles have moved onto to a dial for the 4 wheel drive mode selector, the Pajero still sticks with the old school shifter to select your preferred mode. Just in front of the gear selector, there are two buttons which are used to control the seat heating function. The driver and the passenger side seats are heated and the driver side seat is 5-way electrically operated. Being a three door SWB vehicle, the rear seat comfort is pretty good and can fit two adults with decent amount of room. The square body ensure good head space and the leg room is decent too, the only hinge is that you have to push forward the front seats to get in and out of the second row. This process is made easier with a lever which the rear passenger can step on to activate a spring mechanism which quickly moves the front seat out of the way. The sunroof is a welcomed feature which emits more light into the cabin and is electrically operated but the shade is manual which we found to slowly open when going over rough and difficult terrains although this isn’t much of a problem anyway.
The engine powering the Pajero is a 3.2 L Turbocharged DIDC GLS 4×4 paired to an automatic transmission. The engine produces 187 hp @ 3800 RPM and 441Nm of torque @ 2000 RPM. The torque kicks in strong and fast; this powerful engine and a compact build makes for a very punchy performing vehicle. This is the same engine as in the larger LWB version meaning, the SWB version has a much better power to weight ratio. The Pajero just ate up everything we threw at its path, it is a very capable off-roader, so much so that even in very difficult situations we barely had to shift into 4 wheel drive high let alone even touch 4 wheel drive low range. The Super Select II 4WD has 4 different options you can opt to drive in, the 2H (Two Wheel drive High Range), 4H (Four Wheel Drive High Range), 4HLC (Four Wheel Drive High Range With Centre Differential Locked) and 4LLC (Four Wheel Drive Low Range With Centre Differential Locked). (Note: the vehicle has to be stationary to engage these modes.)
HANDLING AND COMFORT
The rally pedigree behind the Mitsubishi name testifies for its off road handling capabilities. The Pajero is setup with independent suspension at all wheels. The front is an independent wishbone suspension and the rear is a multi-link double wishbone independent suspension. This allows for suspension to move individually and the wheel articulations allow for more grip resulting in better overall traction.
All of this coupled with a rigid monocoque chassis allows for excellent driving dynamics. The long travel soft suspension does result in a slightly bumpier ride but it is worth every bit of that off-road performance. The Pajero is pretty comfortable to travel in and the vehicle is equally good on the tarmac as it is off it.
The Pajero SWB is a dedicated vehicle if you have a small family, or don’t have to travel around with more than four adults, but if that is the case you can always opt for the LWB version. The SWB is excellent as a daily commuter considering our congested traffic situation. Parking this vehicle will also be easier than the LWB as it will take a lot less space. The Pajero SWB is priced at Rs. 1,49,60,000/- and the LWB at Rs. 1,96,50,000/- The Pajero is an excellent on and off-road vehicle, with a very rich history. These vehicles are very well built and reliable, so if you are looking for a SUV that can do it all but don’t want it to be excessively sized and if your pocket allows it then go for the SWB variant, for everything else there is the LWB variant as well. The Pajero will company you at all times through all of your adventures and will make sure that you are safe while doing that with a host of safety features such as 6 airbags, RISE (Reinforced Impact Safety Evolution) Body construction, ASTC (Active Stability & Traction Control), ABS (Antilock Braking System) EBD (Electronic Brake-force Distribution) and BAS (Brake Assist System).