The affordable but controversial addition to Mitsubishi’s range will finish up its short three-year tenure in Australia when stock runs out later this year
In its final months on sale, Mitsubishi says the Express will retain its entry price of $39,040 (before on-road costs) and its industry-leading (although conditional) 10-year/200,000km warranty, but no changes or additions have been proposed.
Mitsubishi first introduced the Express in 2020 as a re-badged version of the Renault Trafic van but the Australian outlet has decided to call time on the van with the final allocation manufactured exclusively in short-wheelbase guise set to end production in May.
Healthy stock levels mean the Express SWB is expected to remain on sale in Australia until late-2022 but supply of the LWB version will only last until mid-2022.
Mitsubishi offers the Express with a choice of two four-cylinder engines: a 103kW/340Nm 1.6-litre twin-turbo-diesel tied exclusively to a six-speed manual transmission and a 125kW/380Nm 2.0-litre turbo-diesel paired to six-speed dual-clutch automatic.
Both engines feed power exclusively to the front wheels in both SWB and LWB versions, with the bulk of the range badged as the Express GLX.
As standard, manual versions of the Express feature rear parking sensors, a three-seat capacity, fabric seat trim and an 80-litre fuel tank while automatic versions also receive front fog lights and a rear-view camera.
Mitsubishi also offers the Express GLX+ which is exclusively paired to the 2.0-litre diesel LWB option, which throws in a 7.0-inch touchscreen with wired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
In March 2021, Mitsubishi Australia received a rude shock when ANCAP announced it had slapped the Express with its first ever zero-star crash-test rating.
ANCAP blamed the absence of active-safety technology as the key reason for the rating but also pointed to its poor performance in physical crashes.
The move was highly criticised by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries who were quick to point out that the near-identical Renault Trafic was awarded a three-star rating by ANCAP’s European counterpart NCAP when it went on sale in the region in 2015.
Since then, however, the Express has found itself overwhelmed by rivals such as the Hyundai Staria Load and Volkswagen T6.1 Transporter that are chock-full of standard active-safety equipment – further highlighting the shortcomings of the stripped-bare Mitsubishi.
All prices listed are before on-road costs.
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