I recently had the chance to try out the new Crossover from Mitsubishi known as the ASX (Active Smart X-over), it’s a new genre of car which is becoming very popular. It has the utility of an SUV but the driving characteristics of a sedan.
It’s quite a fierce looking car and very well specced (Kenwood head unit, front & rear proximity sensors, reverse camera, paddle shift and much more). You can find the details/specs and features from the Mitsubishi Malaysia site here – Mitsubishi ASX.
In some markets this car would be known as the RVR, earlier models of which have a lot of similarities with my car – the Airtrek. Now all we need is them to come out with a 4B11T RalliArt Turbo edition! There are some similarities between the two as you can see here, coincidentally it was also great timing as my car was due for a service and some work on various bits so I dropped it off at the workshop while I had the ASX.
With such a spacious and comfortable car at my disposal I decided I should pick up a bunch of my buddies on a Friday night and head off to Penang for the weekend! In total 5 of us went along in the ASX (myself, Kim, Horng, Yuki and Carol). We easily fit 5 in the car with our bags in the back, even though the boot isn’t huge it fit everything with ease. There was also plenty of power to keep us cruising at a decent speed on the highway. I did find it a little weird at first as I’ve never driven a CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission) transmission car for long distances before – for someone with a manual car, or a regular auto gearbox it’s strange to see the RPM staying at the same spot but the speed steadily climbing. It certainly makes for a pleasant and very fuel efficient drive though.
The first location the ASX delivered us to safely was Ipoh for some Lou Wong Tauge Chicken Noodles! Parking the car is easy with the front and back sensors, elevated seating position and reverse camera – even in pretty packed areas.
I managed to reach Penang bridge when the empty fuel sign came on, I crossed over the bridge and headed to the first petrol station I could find (which was pretty near thankfully). Usage for some city + mostly highway drive was around 550km for a full tank (approx 55 litres). We got to Penang in perfect time for some supper at Green House Hokkien Mee.
We were up early the next morning and off we went, with a full tank of petrol and the comfort of the ASX we had no qualms about spending the entire day driving up/down and round Penang island. I think that Saturday we spent about 16 hours on the go with a few rest stops here and there and around 7 meals!
Of course it is necessary to visit the Lorong Selamat Char Kway Teow when in Penang, so we did that! Honestly…I have to say I think I’ll be boycotting it from now on after tasting some of the other delicious versions around the island at less than half the price..yah it’s still good, not as good as it was…but sorry RM9 for a plate of noodles aint floating my boat any more.
On Sunday we took a little more easy on the eating front after almost entering a legit coma on Saturday evening at New Lane..we saw a bit more of the island and went a bit further out to Balik Pulau for a drive through the hills. The ASX is easy to drive being front wheel drive (this also makes it lighter, less complex and more fuel efficient) – it’s a bit of a waste making a car 4WD if it’s never going to go off-road. It had enough power to handle the inclines, the handling is a little soft for my taste – but then I’m used to low sports suspension set ups, which give great handling but are rather useless in practical situations (curbs, pot-holes, speed-bumps etc).
The drive was truly worth it though, the Balik Pulau Asam Laksa is the best I’ve EVER had by far.
After that we headed all the way up to the top of the hill, the ASX had no problems with giving us power on the way up – we got to enjoy a glorious view of all the reclaimed land from the peak.
Here’s a video of us heading back down the hill in the ASX:
Some how we managed to drive 300km purely inside Penang! That’s quite a feat for such a small island, and the ASX was still showing more than half a tank of fuel left. I did pump an extra RM50 to get home, but for a car this size with 5 fairly heavy people (remember 7 meals a day…) it did very well.
We did drive it quite hard to make sure we got to Ipoh in time for Menglembu Honey Chicken, and I’d still estimate it’d give between 550-600km on average per tank. It was an absolutely perfect weekend made possible by the comfort and space in the Mitsubishi ASX.
If you’re looking for a handsome, easy to drive, comfortable car with great full efficiency in the RM140,000 price range – I suggest you go and test drive the ASX ASAP!
There is also a contest currently going on called the Mitsubishi ASX-Perience on Facebook, check out the page for details on how to get involved.
If you want a more technical and in-depth review you can also check on Paul Tan here:
KY and Red Mummy also had the car, their experiences are here: