The Mitsubishi Xpander is well-known and well-loved in South Africa – a versatile 7-seater people carrier that looks and acts like an SUV. It gives you the ability to carry a lot of people, or a lot of stuff, or some people and some stuff, even people sitting next to each other with long cargo next to them.
The Xpander Cross, which hasn’t made it to South Africa, was launched three years ago with the basic Xpander we know, but with even more SUV cred.
The Cross has now received a major facelift both inside and on the exterior.
On the safety side it gets Active Yaw Control that improves handling in corners by applying braking force onto the inside front wheel, based on the steering angle, brake pressure, longitudinal G-forces, yaw rate, and wheel speed.
There is a new electric parking brake, a digital instrument cluster and a larger 8-inch instrument cluster. Controls such as climate control are now on a screen and you can charge your phone wirelessly.
The Xpander Cross comes with a naturally aspirated 1.5-petrol engine that gives you 77kW power and 141 Nm torque, either through a CVT or 5-speed manual. The CVT has 220mm ground clearance, while the MT has 225mm. That power and torque and generous ground clearance, as well as the 17” alloy wheels, give it the ability to go on the roads less travelled.
The Cross has had its front and rear overhang stretched by 95mm, and the wheels have a two-tone look with grey accents to match the front and rear skid plates and door garnishes.
The ‘T’ motif on the front is now more prominent and is reflected on the rear of the car, where updated taillights give it a more modern look and feel.
Road tests overseas are very complimentary to the updated Cross, with the total package seen as a pretty well-balanced seven-seater MPV/Crossover.
The Mitsubishi Xpander has proved to be a hit in South Africa with larger families, people with active outdoor hobbies and as versatile staff transport for businesses. Alas, at the moment it does not look as though Mitsubishi will bring the Cross to South Africa. Nevertheless, it is interesting to see how the company continuously push the development envelope in the various markets where it is active.