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Shorty gets its groove back


THE MITSUBISHI Pajero has evolved into a formidable 4x4 icon over the years and the latest editions continue this legacy. We drove the newest member of the family, the Pajero short wheelbase (SWB) to see if the tiny sibling could live up to the reputation of its big brother.

Powering the SWB is the familiar 3.2-litre common-rail turbo-diesel engine capable of producing 140kW of power and 441Nm of torque. It’s more than versatile with enough urge to propel this little two-door SUV over most obstacles, but it lacks refinement and does feel sluggish off the mark.

Despite its mini physique, it’s still a hardcore 4x4 off-roader. It’s tough, capable and reliable and the host of upgrades usher it into the modern era thanks to the inclusion of a rear-view camera, USB port and privacy glass. But although it boasts these nifty creature comforts, it is showing signs of aging.

Perhaps this is why Mitsubishi allowed us to test the Pajero SWB Legend. Only 30 are available and feature R80 000 worth of additional equipment at only R30 000 more than the standard model. Some of these features include off-road tyres, an air compressor built into the engine compartment and tyre monitoring systems as well as a dual battery system and underbody protection plates, to name just a few.

The Pajero SWB is something to behold - it’s got a lot going for it, particularly in the tech department and knows how to dominate in the bush. Despite its off-road qualities, however, it’s aged under the skin and while the acceleration won’t take you by surprise, the rather costly price will.

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