From £26,199
The Mitsubishi Shogun has been mildly tweaked for 2012, but remains a no-nonsense tool with strong off-road credentials, albeit an expensive one

Our Verdict

Mitsubishi Shogun

The Mitsubishi Shogun has its appeal. It needs more chassis finesse, but is still charming

  • First Drive

    Mitsubishi Shogun 3.2 SG4

    The Mitsubishi Shogun has been mildly tweaked for 2012, but remains a no-nonsense tool with strong off-road credentials, albeit an expensive one
  • First Drive

    Mitsubishi Shogun 3.2 Di-D

    Very good in the rough stuff, but very crude on the road. And it's not cheap, either.
Matt Prior
27 November 2011

What is it?

It’s natural for off-roaders to enjoy a longer product cycle than regular road cars, but on the surface the Mitsubishi Shogun, here tested in mildly-tweaked for 2012 form, seems well overdue for replacement.

It last had a significant revamp in 2006, and you’re looking at a car whose monocoque platform (with an integrated ladder-like frame) and major mechanicals were introduced at turn of the millennium.

Is that a problem? It might be. Changes for the 2012 model year include a new grille, Euro V compliant engine, some new interior materials and different range badging.

But what we’re talking about is an old car, with a 3.2-litre diesel that, while having its emissions cut to 224g/km, still only has four, vast, cylinders.

What’s it like?

As you might expect, the Shogun’s interior design is pretty dated, and the materials aren’t up to current standards, even though fit and finish are fine.

The diesel’s a rowdy beast when you fire it up, too. We’ve become so accustomed to the hush of modern multi-cylinder turbodiesels that the Shogun is a stark reminder of the way things used to be.

It doesn’t go down the road too cleverly, either. The primary ride is actually okay, especially for tall car; it resists excess roll and float but coupled to that, inevitably, is a pretty unsettled secondary ride across smaller lumps and imperfections. There’s also too much road and wind noise for the Shogun to compete with the best.

One advantage of the Shogun’s age, though, is that it feels quite narrow compared to some modern 4x4s, at 1875mm (most premium SUVs are well over 1900mm) and with squared-off extremities that are easy to place. This LWB variant also squeezes seven seats into its 4900mm length.

There are the off-road credentials too, of course (700mm wade depth, it can climb 48 degrees and not topple sideways across on a 45 degree slope), which the excellent visibility helps exploit. And the Shogun can tow 3500kg. It also performs admirably in reliability surveys.

Should I buy one?

The Shogun remains the same no-nonsense tool it always was. That’s fine, but we have trouble satisfyingly mating that to the £40,999 asking price of the range-topping SG4.

And if you don’t need all the Shogun can do off-road, even the £32,129 of the LWB entry model is a tough ask against ‘softer’ competition that can tow things just as convincingly.

Mitsubishi Shogun 3.2 SG4

Price: £40,999; Top speed: 111mph; 0-62mph: 11.1sec; Economy: 34.4mpg; Co2: 216g/km; Engine: 4cyls, 3200cc, turbodiesel; Power: 197bhp at 3800rpm; Torque: 325lb ft at 2000rpm; Gearbox: 5-spd auto

Join the debate

Comments
10

7 December 2011

Did Mitsubishi tint those front windows? Look's illegal to me, not good on a brand-new car

7 December 2011

Everyone I know who owns one of these vehicles, swears by them. They all admit to them not being as refined as say a Discovery but they all say they are more reliable and dependable overall.

I don't think (despite the trim level) this car is aimed at people who want to use their vehicles predominantly on road, this is aimed at people who want to use their 4x4 for what it was meant for.

 

 

It's all about the twisties........

7 December 2011

Over £40,000 is pushing it a bit, but this does strike as a very capable and convincing offroader. If I wanted to get the job done, then this would definitely be on my shortlist.

DKW

7 December 2011

[quote TegTypeR]Everyone I know who owns one of these vehicles, swears by them[/quote] I live in a rural area where a high proportion of vehicles are 4X4s, and have heard the same thing. Having said that, the local Landie owners (and there are a lot) will rarely hear a word against their lemons sorry Landies.

7 December 2011

For all its compromises, if I needed a real 4x4 and not a Chelsea tractor that can just about patter about in a grassy field, but only if it's not muddy, then this would be the car I would buy, without doubt.

Can't help but feel that the number of folk who really need it (and can afford it) are vanishingly small mind.

7 December 2011

Just the job if you frequent the African safari, but for urban UK cruising.....

7 December 2011

Yes please I'd like one, living on the fringes of Exmoor just what I need,mind you the SG4 version is too expensive but the base version has enough kit for me.

It's a pity that Mitsubishi don't import the Delica and Shogun Sport as well.

7 December 2011

I remember the dakar mitsubishis shoguns in their various guises that dominated the dakar rally throughout the 00's. 7 victories in a row I think.

www.KOOOLcr.com

 

8 December 2011

Halves in value in 2 years: would rather have a 2009 model with under 30K miles for less than £22K, thanks. £40K+ for a Shogun?!?!

29 December 2011

$40k seems alot for a shogun, called the pajero in New Zeland, they are however relaible and will go forever, also they are rather excellent offroad. Mitsi seems to be bleeding chips with its vehicle range they dont seem to be bringing out new models of ay of their range, just a mid life refresh like there is here, ive read in my NZ Autocar issue, one of the editors thought mitsubishi would go before SAAB, and it seems the R&D department is a tad cash straped hence no new models

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