January 26, 2020

Single cab dropped from range as L200 is relaunched

In a crowded sector, Mitsubishi has ramped up L200’s appeal, reports Dan Gilkes.

Mitsubishi has launched a new version of the L200 pick-up truck, the Series 6. Boasting a completely new look, particularly at the front end, the pick-up uses a slightly smaller engine but comes with improved ride and handling, plus increased payload capability. The company has dropped the single cab from its pick-up line, saying there was little demand for the body style. A Club cab remains in base 4Life trim, while all other L200s are now double cab and 4×4 only.

There are four trim levels, from the utility-spec 4Life, through Warrior and Barbarian, to a new range-topping Barbarian X model. The 4Life model comes on 16” wheels but all other models have 18” rims as standard. They all get the new look too, which features a 40mm higher bonnet line and what Mitsubishi calls a Dynamic Shield front end, which mirrors the look of other models in the firm’s 4×4 line-up.

Though it looks tougher than the Series 5, Mitsubishi has resisted the temptation to make the L200 much bigger overall, like some of its competitors. This makes it easier to thread the truck along country lanes and through the urban sprawl.

The 2.4-litre engine from the Series 5 has been dropped, in favour of a 2.3-litre version of the diesel engine from the Outlander. Power is lower than the older L200, at 150hp, but there is still a healthy 400Nm of torque, which is enough to make the truck feel relatively quick off the mark. Indeed, the majority of drivers will be hard pressed to notice the lower output in regular use, though competitors with far higher outputs will no doubt make the point known.

You can choose between six-speed manual or automatic transmissions, up from the five-speed auto in the Series 5, which pass the power to Mitsubishi’s Super Select 4WD-II system. This in turn drives the rear wheels in normal use, though you can change to all-wheel drive with a rotary dial in the cab at speeds up to 62mph. The L200 is one of the few pick-ups that can happily run on the road in four-wheel drive if required, without winding up its centre differential, which can be reassuring when the weather gets bad.

For off-road use, the all-wheel drive system now comes with a choice of modes, including Gravel, Mud/Snow, Sand and Rock. The different drive modes adjust wheel slip, engine torque, auto transmission settings and the traction control to suit the terrain.

Auto Stop & Go is now standard on the Euro 6d temp engine, yet even with an extra gear in the auto box, the WLTP combined cycle is only 32.1mph for a manual gearbox version or 29.1mpg for the auto, reflecting the real-world aspect of the new test. The truck’s CO2 emissions are set at 231g/km for the manual and 254g/km with the auto transmission and service intervals are a fairly conservative one year or 12,500 miles. Mitsubishi has equipped the L200 with a 21-litre AdBlue tank, that it says should only require a refill at regular service intervals.

Payload has been increased, from 1,045kg to a maximum of 1080kg, but the towing limit depends on what you are pulling. Mitsubishi will only allow the L200 to pull the full 3.5-tonnes if you have a three-axle trailer. Those customers with a two-axle trailer are restricted to just 3.1-tonnes, apparently for stability reasons. The company claims that this was the same with Series 5, but we must admit that this detail had passed us by.

There is plenty of standard safety kit on board including Emergency Brake Assist, Emergency Stop Signal, Lane Departure Warning, Mitsubishi Active Stability and Traction Control (M-ASTC), Hill Start Assist and Trailer Stability Assist. Higher trim levels also come with Blind Spot Warning and Rear Cross Traffic Alert. Indeed, the whole truck feels far more technologically advanced than its predecessor.

Prices start from just £21,515 for the 4Life Club cab model, while a similar double cab will set you back £22,715. Warrior trim starts at £26,400, Barbarian at £29,300 and the range-topping Barbarian X at £32,200. The auto transmission is a £1,400 option on Warrior and Barbarian, but comes as standard on the Barbarian X. Mitsubishi offers a five-year warranty, but that is limited to 62,500 miles, which is some way behind many of its competitors.

There have been some big improvements with the Series 6 L200, that will certainly appeal to existing Mitsubishi customers. Whether that’s enough to grab sales from increasingly strong competitors remains to be seen. At least Mitsubishi dealers will no longer have to compete with Fiat Professional outlets selling the same truck.