SUVs are the talk of the town nowadays; all the automotive companies are putting their weight behind this segment of cars. There is a whole range of SUVs and crossovers to choose from, and sometimes it becomes confusing to choose a good brand, then choose a good SUV from that brand. Since there are several companies manufacturing SUVs and crossovers, here we will be focusing solely on the offerings by ISUZU and Mitsubishi.
Both ISUZU and Mitsubishi are well-reputed names in the automotive world, and they have been around for quite some time. However, diesel engines are the cash cows for ISUZU, they manufacture pretty reliable and rugged diesel engines that can go on forever and ever.
But ISUZU has only one SUV and pickup truck in their entire lineup, most of their revenue comes from heavy-duty commercial trucks, furthermore, they only offer their SUV and pickup in limited markets contrary to Mitsubishi which is available in more countries. While both manufacturers make good vehicles, both have their pros and cons that we will be discussing in detail below.
Mitsubishi currently has one pickup, three SUVs, and a crossover in its inventory. Mitsubishi currently offers a pickup truck called Strada also known as L200 or Triton in some global markets, it competes with Toyota Tundra or Ford Ranger. Outlander, Pajero comes in the SUV category while Eclipse and ASX are their products in the crossover segment.
Mitsubishi Outlander comes in three different trim levels: Outlander, Outlander Sport, and Outlander PHEV. Although the looks are subjective, the Outlander certainly is a modern-looking SUV from the exterior, but still, the interior feels a tad outdated.
Higher-level trims are available with 3rd-row seating though they are available only in petrol engines which is 2.2L engine punching out 165hp and 222Nm of torque. There is plenty of headroom and legroom for first & second-row passengers, though the third-row seating capacity is a bit congested.
Outlander sport comes only with two-row seating and there are some styling differences on the interior and the exterior, it is priced lower than the standard Outlander. The Outlander PHEV is a hybrid powertrain SUV, that combines the performance of an internal combustion engine with an electric motor.
The combination gives an excellent fuel average as well as instant torque. PHEV version can offer an average of up to 75mpg (31km/L), Mitsubishi offers an 8 year or 100,000 miles warranty on the car’s batteries.
The Mitsubishi eclipse cross is named after a small sporty Mitsubishi car, while the cross-refers to the car’s crossover aspirations. The car is based on the platform of Outlander and ASX. The Eclipse comes in four trim levels: 1,2,3 and 4. The first one being the most basic one and the fourth one with the most number of added equipment. It is offered with a 1.5L petrol engine and a 2.2L turbo-diesel engine mated to either a manual or a CVT transmission.
There is another crossover offered by the Japanese giant Mitsubishi known as Mitsubishi ASX, it is based on the platform of an eclipse and offered with three engines: the same 2.2L petrol engine as the outlander, a 2.4L petrol engine, and a diesel engine. The car comes in five different trim levels, the towing capacity is 1200kg.
Mitsubishi’s legendry SUV the Pajero is a well-known name in some countries, it comes equipped with a 2.5l diesel engine. The Pajero is a very capable off-road vehicle, almost having the same capabilities as the Toyota land cruiser Prado. It needs no introduction when it comes to extremely capable off-road vehicles. Though the Pajero is set to be discontinued in 2021.
Meanwhile, ISUZU also has one pickup truck and one SUV, that is based on the same platform, they currently do not offer any crossover. ISUZU D-max and MU-X are ISUZU’s pickup truck and SUV offerings currently.
ISUZU currently offers only a single SUV, called MU-X. It is based on the platform of the ISUZU d-max and offers a three-row seating capacity. The interior is almost similar to that of d-max, it is offered with a 3.0l turbo diesel engine that pushes out 177hp and 380Nm of torque. The engine is mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission.
Older SUVs offered by ISUZU include ISUZU Rodeo, the SUV was offered up until 2003, but was later discontinued. It was available in 3.2 or a 3.5l V6 engine mated to either a manual or an automatic gearbox.
One of the coolest and weird-looking SUV/crossover by ISUZU was the ISUZU Vehi-cross, it stayed in production until 2001 when it was discontinued. Offered with the same 3.5L V6 of Rodeo, its small size and a big engine gave it plenty of torque to pull around. The Vehi-cross included standard ricaro seats for added comfort. The SUV was well recognized as a capable off-roader in its time, though the SUV failed to succeed in the US market, and ISUZU only managed to sell only 5000 units in three years.
Mitsubishi vs ISUZU:
When it comes to Mitsubishi vs ISUZU, both have their pros and cons. Mitsubishi has a wider range of products to choose from, such as the unmentioned hot SUV Mitsubishi Pajero Sport in Thailand, and they offer a more contemporary design language.
While Mitsubishi SUVs have good exterior and interior styling, ISUZU only has one styling language, that is used both in the MU-X and D-max, which is sort of bland. The main areas where the ISUZU leads are the diesel engines and transmissions.
ISUZU has been known to make powerful and reliable diesel engines, which is their unique selling proposition. Also, ISUZU’s transmissions are better than Mitsubishi’s, Mitsubishi uses Jatco transmissions which are notorious when it comes to being unreliable.
If you want an SUV or a crossover with good exterior and interior styling, decent reliability, and a price tag, then you should go for Mitsubishi. You would not get as much life from your vehicle as an ISUZU, but Mitsubishis can work well for quite some time. Also, if you are interested in a hybrid SUV, then you don’t have much choice, but to go for the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, which no doubt is a good choice.
If you want a diesel engine and a longer life from your SUV, plus you are satisfied with the looks of the MU-X and the D-max then you should go for it. It is also a very capable off-roader that has a good resale value and comes second to Toyota when it comes to reliability. If you want more details on the ISUZU MU-X. Also, the upcoming MU-X and the D-Max have upgraded interior and exterior, which looks much better than the previous model.
Either way, you cannot go wrong with both brands. Both brands have capable vehicles and good support of parts. While MU-X and D-MAX may not look as good as Mitsubishi SUVs and crossovers, they score pretty well on reliability and off-roading capability. Nonetheless, at the end of the day, it all comes down to your own personal preferences and taste.