Mitsubishi’s ASX (Active Sports Crossover) has proven a solid and sensible used-car choice. This smart-looking, compact, four-door wagon has attractive modern styling, versatile cabin layout, good selection of comfortably equipped models, relatively low running costs and a five-star safety rating across the range.
The ASX slots between the Lancer and Outlander, with plenty of component sharing a resemblance in styling and an excellent reputation for reliability.
ASX is a light-duty SUV wagon primarily for city dwellers who like to take an occasional run up the highway or along country roads. It is class competitive rather than class leading. There is a choice of petrol and diesel engines, two- and four-wheel drivelines, as well as manual or automatic transmissions, however the combinations are limited. The early 2WD models only get the 2.0L petrol engine, with a CVT style automatic or 5-speed manual. Not every version is available in manual. Until mid-2013 the 1.8L turbo-diesel AWDs were only available with a 6-speed manual.
A larger capacity 2.2L turbo-diesel replaced the 1.8L diesel in June 2013 and came in both 2WD and AWD. From then the diesels were only available with a conventional 6-speed automatic.
On the used market, petrol models outnumber diesels almost two-to-one and only about 10% of all ASX models advertised are manual.
The performance of the 2.0L petrol version is a match for others in the class, while the driveability provided by the diesel’s strong torque down low and lower fuel consumption are worth considering.
The manual version’s “notchy” gearshift and long clutch-pedal travel won’t be to everyone’s liking. The later diesel’s step up in engine capacity and convenience of the auto adds extra appeal. The improved tractability makes it a willing performer and easy to drive in traffic.
All these engine/transmission combinations, however, tend to be a little noisy at times. Fuel consumption for the 2WD petrol version ranges from around 8.5L to 10.0L per 100km, while the AWD versions generally average about 0.5L per 100km higher. Diesels usually return about 6.0 to 8.0L.
With light, well-weighted steering and a comfortable ride, the ASX handles well for its class under most conditions.
The majority of owners are happy with ASX. Most of the problems RACV vehicle inspectors find are normal tyre and brake wear, or issues related to a lack of proper servicing. It is worth having a look underneath for damage.
4D Wagon (2WD) (2010-14): $14,200-$22,400
4D Wagon (4WD) (2010-14): $15,900-$25,600
Aspire (4WD) 4D Wagon (2010-14): $17,300-$29,600
Luxury (2WD) 4D Wagon (2011-12): $17,800-$20,00