First impressions: 2019 Mitsubishi Strada GLS 4WD MT

A quick drive of Mitsu’s updated pickup
by Jason Tulio | Feb 2, 2019
PHOTO: Jason Tulio
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Mitsubishi Motors Philippines is starting the year off strong with the launch of the refreshed Strada. The midsize pickup was recently unveiled at Pradera Verde in Pampanga, where the Japanese carmaker gave us the opportunity to drive the truck once again. This was following our initial drive in Thailand, then another short stint for our Launch Pad shoot. This time, we got to test it out on a short dirt track.

The manual variant’s clutch is springy, but not too much, and has a long travel that forces you to sit a bit close to the wheel. The shifter likewise has a slightly longer-than-average throw. The wheel feels a lot like the Montero Sport’s—it’s light to turn, but provides ample feedback when you need it. The pickup is quite agile for its size, and offers tight turning thanks to its short wheelbase.

One thing we noticed is how quick the onboard electronics are to react. The updated Strada comes with Mitsubishi Active Stability and Traction Control. Fancy name, but pretty standard fare on many modern vehicles. With other pickups we’ve tried, the tail normally has to whip out a tiny bit before the technology works its magic to manage the power and braking force to put you back in a straight line. On Mitsu’s dirt course, the tail had yet to veer off course before the traction control did its job. The reaction time was impressive, and would definitely come in handy in case of an emergency.

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Mitsubishi is trumpeting the new Strada’s improved ride comfort, and for a pickup, it did feel pretty plush while running on the smoother parts of the course. Coming down from small jumps, though, the impact was a bit harsh and reminded us which segment the vehicle belongs to. As far as power goes, the 2.4-liter MIVEC puts out 179hp and 430Nm. However, the course at Pradera Verde wasn’t comprehensive enough for us experience the engine’s potential.  

We’ll definitely be driving the Strada more in the coming months, so stay tuned for our extensive reviews.

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PHOTO: Jason Tulio
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