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Mitsubishi Pajero NW VR-X Automatic

Mitsubishi Pajero NW VR-X Automatic (2011-2014)

4.0 from 8 reviews
Mitsubishi Pajero In-Depth Review

ProductReview.com.au's selected consumer review.


Old school style and reliability

The fuel consumption is good being diesel despite being a weighty car.
On road it eats up the miles effortlessly.
Comfortable good handling and braking .suprisingly powerful engine for highway running and towing. Off road it is a competant performer. Allow for correct tyre pressures and it handles most obstacles well.
Vision all round is good being an older style body.
Interior in functional if not a bit dated in design.
The sound system phone integration sucks .it is complicated and just silly.
The reversing camera function is very handy.
In summary a better choice than a soft roader.
A very good value for money package compared to its major rival.

Purchased in May 2014 at Mitsubishi Cessnock for $54,000.00.

Build Quality
Value for Money
Cleaning & Maintenance
Noise Level
TransmissionAutomatic
BoughtNew
Performance
Acceleration / Power
Handling
Braking
Suspension
Gear Shifting
Fuel Efficiency
Design
Interior Design
Boot Size
Features
Comfort

Can't fault it!

2nd Pajero in 10 years. Put 200000 km on the last one and now 31000 in just over 12 months on this one. Tow a large caravan with ease however do feel it is a bit soft in the rear so fitting air bags. Also a bit thirstier then the previous NP but has more 'go' then the NP. Rides more like a car than a Jeep or Prado/Landcruiser. Best value for the money.

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TransmissionAutomatic
1 comment
70,000 kms and still going on original standard tyres!

4x4 is great

Don't expect parts to be available all the time, have been waiting over a month for a part. No one can advise when available. Have had steering arm replaced excess wear two year old, had a recall automatic transmission tension adjustment no working. Other than that fuel eco good tows very well. Comfortable

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TransmissionAutomatic

The good, the bad and the?

I brought mr vrx model nov 2013 and now have 34000k;s on it. For the purpose I brought it< towing a 2.5 tonne caravan it surpasses all my expectations. What ever the conditions it handles it with ease and the diesel engine has more than enough torque to keep up with the petrol heads that race to pass you because you are towing.
Interior wise elctonic heated front seats are a blessing as is the rest of the seating. Dash layout is easily viewed through the steering wheel and the control are well set out.
Running costs I found I can get 1000klms out of a tank on highway mode (not towing) and 600k.s when towing highway. arround town I regularly average 650k's out ofr a tank.
Thats the positives:
on the down side the gps is a joke, if you have small children in car seats unless you use the third row (not recommended as no boot space for strollers) and a safty issue you cannot get three people across the second seat. (my commodore can) The spare wheel is badly located for towing, Mitsubshi had no solution to fix. They lifted the spare up (at a cost of $170) but this does not fix the problem, you still cannot open the rear door when hooked up to a trailer.

Purchased in November 2013.

Build Quality
Value for Money
Cleaning & Maintenance
Noise Level
TransmissionAutomatic
BoughtNew
Performance
Acceleration / Power
Handling
Braking
Suspension
Gear Shifting
Fuel Efficiency
Design
Interior Design
Boot Size
Features
Comfort
1 comment
After 72000klm's I have had to replace the brakes and rotors for a second time. If towing make sure that your brakes are heavy duty otherwise be prepared.

Could Have Been The Best

Bought new 15 months ago & now have 20K km on clock. Never been off road, so can't comment on that aspect.
Use it to tow Cruiseliner caravan & as daily driver. Performs those tasks with ease.
Dealer servicing only average.
Problems are with Communication System. Bluetooth with iPhone 5 fails regularly. Maps & GPS are worse than hopeless. The GPS is so bad, I would almost rate it as dangerous.
Vehicle is noisy at highway speed. Speedo is difficult to read. Spare tyre position is an issue with nearly all towing situations.
Despite the above shortcomings that Mitsubishi don't seem to be willing to address/change with each new model, the Pajero offers reliable, economic, comfortable motoring as a tow vehicle. For very little manufacturing cost, the Pajero could have been the best medium/large 4 wheel drive tow vehicle available in Australia.
UPDATE. Now have 30 000Km. on clock & nearly 2 years old.
Still mechanically faultless.
Feel confident to say this was the right purchase decision for the tasks I had in mind,- that of a competent tow vehicle. Would expect many more years & km's of trouble free motoring.
Pajero will be the first option I will be looking at, when it comes time to replace.
UPDATE Now have 55 000km & nearly 3 years old. Still have had zero mechanical issues- a credit to Mitsubishi. Had to replace battery 6 months ago (only12mth warranty)
If it weren't for the pathetic GPS & Bluetooth, of which you are reminded of every time you drive it, I would rate the Pajero one star higher. If they would upgrade the speedo size & address the highway noise problem, This would be a 5 star vehicle.

Purchased in September 2014 at Motorama.

Build Quality
Value for Money
Cleaning & Maintenance
Noise Level
TransmissionAutomatic
BoughtNew
Performance
Acceleration / Power
Handling
Braking
Suspension
Gear Shifting
Fuel Efficiency
Design
Interior Design
Boot Size
Features
Comfort
1 comment
UPDATE. Now have 69 000km & is 4 years old. Still zero mechanical or warranty issues. Replaced Tyres & Brake Pads 5 000km ago- a little early as we were going on a trip & didn't want to risk a problem while away. Can't complain about the build, & general quality of the vehicle. Very happy with purchase except for the features mentioned above. Those features are in your face every time you drive & detract from an otherwise great car.

Big disapointment on after sales service and lack of warranty

We have had our Pajero for almost 2years from brand new. The car was brought for my husband until it become the family car I drove as it was a safer car. I was hesitate at first not wanting such a big car but it is a joy to drive and the extra features like the reversing camera make it feel like a much more manageable car. In comparison to other cars in its range I found the features for the Pajero were over and above the competition especially in comparison to price.

We had capped price servicing however especially with Mitsubishi being so far away and the fact that it is actually more expensive than your log book service with a mechanic we have not had our car serviced at Mitsubishi and for that I am glad as their after sales service is not amongst the best I have seen. (I will give Toyota great after sales servicing and genuinely cheaper capped price servicing)

Before a road trip we experience a technical problem with the car and contacted the service centre for some problem solving only to be told they wouldnt assist us or let us talk to a technition regarding the issue.

My husband tested our battery after 18 months and being the car his wife and child drive most decided it was best to replace it. Unfortunately little did we know that then voided the warranty on our battery tray and Mitsubishi charged us $80 for the privilege of telling us it wasnt covered. Rather than being proactive and asking us one or two questions over the phone they would rather us bring it in so we can be charged for the two minutes it took to open the bonnet. Reading reviews this seems like a common issue that is not covered.

Our CD player also broke. The model we have has the ability to use a SD card to play music which is amazing but our daughters nursary rhymes are on CDs. When this broke we looked into getting it fixed. We were told they could definately see an error but a CD was jammed which they couldnt remove and asked for permission to send it away giving us a list of senarios where the costs wouldnt be covered under warranty. Luckily for us it was a genuine CD and it was replace.

Overall we have been happy with our car but the after sales service or lack there of has left a bad taste in our mouths.

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TransmissionAutomatic

After 12 months and 45,000 km travelling around Australia

I purchased a Pajero NW VRX 3.2L Diesel in 2014 – after 12 months and 45,000km travelling around Australia, off-road for about 4000km including Birdsville, Strzelecki, Oodnadatta tracks, Gibb River Road in WA plus others and traversing the Nullarbor (Nullarbor is just a big highway now), below are what I believe to be the top POSITIVES and NEGATIVES. Hope its of some use.

POSITIVES
1) Price – I was able to get one that was the last on the showroom. While it wasn’t my colour choice (white but at least it wasn’t grey) it did come with a $4000 cash back plus a deal where I got $2000 of accessories, however I have since replaced the Nudge Bar to upgrade to a full Bull Bar. It ended up costing about $52,000 for the VRX so when compared to say Patrol or Prado there’s a significant difference.

2) Storage (where third row seats are/were) - If you take out the last row of seats there’s some good storage in the back area under the floor which you will find useful.

3) Reliability – In 45,000km we have had no major mechanical issues. It has started every time. The diesel motor is quite noisy and we have had 2 warranty issues (Timing Belt Tensioner which was general recall and Oil Filter Bracket gasket which was leaking quite a bit). This cost us time more than anything while we sat around at Mitsubishi to get it repaired, however to the most part the car has keep going.

4) Power – power plant seems to be generally good and the diesel motor seems to give enough power together with more than enough speed for overtaking even when towing.

NEGATIVES
5) Towing: Spare and Tail gate sits way way too low as it hits most hitches and rear door cant be opened - A Google search into this will see the forums filled with discussions about this issue. Unfortunately until you know about it or search for it, it’s already probably too late. This item I have found to be the biggest issue and is clearly a design flaw. Who would design a car and one that should be for towing and put the spare to sit lower than the tail gate. There’s a partial fix for about $100 dollars where it lift the spare up 50mm but even after that the tail gate will hit the hitch and you will only be able to open the rear about 30 degrees. We have what I would call a mid height Camper Trailer and we have been trying to solve the issue with both increasing the height of the rear with new springs, air bags, lifting the spare and different tow hitches and I’m now forming the opinion that unless you plan to tow only a very low to the ground trailer then it’s not the car for you. The sales person won’t mention any of this to you. Mitsubishi should at least provide the spare wheel lift kit when fitting a genuine tow pack but to date they don’t. Our requests were basically met with denial of the design flaw by Mitsubishi and the added strange comment from them that Pajeros are only designed to “tow smaller trailers with smaller hitches.” I’m sure that comment won’t be in any marketing material.

6) Tyre Options – Unless you plan to just stick to the national highway you will need to throw away the standard tyres. Best to do this almost immediately as many tyre stores will trade them in if they have less than 5,000kms on them. You will then find there are not too many options available for 18 inch wheels if you want a really good A/T or S/T as most Toyotas and Nissans (which everyone seems to focus on) have smaller rims. If you go with say a BFG then you need to get a 65 series which means you cannot fit the spare inside the housing on the rear. Also this size tyre poses another problem if you need to replace one while travelling. Try to find a 265 or 275/65/18 anywhere other than a major city. We also found Pirelli Scorpions to be rubbish as we kept on flatting with them so after 20,000km we opted for Bridgestone Dueller AT 697s 265/60/18 which so far have been proven to be about the best. Note: it’s important to keep to a 60 series as if you need to replace it many places will stock a 60 series tyre. Whereas it probably won’t be a Bridgestone 697 at least they will have something.

7) Range of off-road accessories – The range is getting better and places like TJM and ARB are starting to stock alot more items but you will endlessly hear when you enquire about a certain product that its available for Toyota and Nissan, etc. but not for Pajero.

8) Fuel Tank – 88 litres is not enough when compared to other cars which are meant to be in its class. While we didn’t opt for a long range tank which can be bought for $2000 through ARB, you will find you are always topping up and carrying alot of spare fuel in cans. Note: if you go for a long range tank you will lose the rear seat storage which was a pro above.

9) Dash moving on corrugations – The dash can move up to about an inch or more when driving on corrugations. I’m told that this is because it’s set up to ‘float’, where Prado and Landcruser are more ridged. I’m not sure yet if there’s a benefit of detriment to this but sometimes you get quite worried about the amount of movement.

10) Suspension – If you plan to do any off-road or tow anything other than a box trailer then springs and shocks will need to be replaced which will cost about $2000. We also had fitted air bags in the rear springs which also allow us to control the ride height a little better.

OVERALL – I think any rating is only about mid range. If I was asked if I would buy one again (and travel around Australia) probably not. But that being said if price was the overriding factor and I could deal with the above negatives, then maybe.

July 25th 2016 Update: Pajero NW review after 80,000km and 2 laps of Australia

Original review - After 12 months and 45,000 km travelling around Australia (link)http://www.productreview.com.au/r/mitsubishi-pajero-2006-present/749018.html

I originally posted a review with some positives and negatives (title and link above) after my first 12 months owning a Pajero. As I have had a few contacts and questions following people reading the review together with having now done 80,000km and 2 laps of Australia, including plenty of off-road and outback tracks such as Cape York, Great Central, Tanami, Gibb River, Birdsville, Oodnadatta and a host of other dirt and tar roads, I thought I would write some additional observations that may assist. I’m guessing that not too many MY14 Pajeros in Australia have done this as yet.

The items in my prior review still hold including positives such as price and mechanical reliability and negatives such as towing issues, size of the standard fuel tank, wheel/tyre sizes and options (however tyre options are getting a little better given that Jeep, Landcruiser and Ranger now have 18in wheel options).
Dirt Tracks and Corrugations - Doing a lot of dirt and corrugated tracks, items in the cabin are starting to get a little loose such as the Navigator bouncing out of its space (now have cloth tape holding it in!), the wipers come on and many squeaks are starting to occur, mostly around the dash area. This I think due to the quite large movement of the dash as discussed in my prior review. My general feeling is that a more ridged dash would be better in design and function.

We also started with roof racks on the standard rails and then a basket with our second spare and a few other items in that. Not long after our first couple of dirt tracks the bouncing had started to take effect on the rails and they were getting quite loose where it was clear the standard rails weren’t meant to carry any real weight, despite being well under the 100kg load maximum. We opted for an ARB Aluminium roof cage that does away with the standard rails and mounts directly onto the gutters. So far this has worked well and gives us a lot of extra easy to get to room for storage.

On the positives in this area we have had no major mechanical issue coming from the amount of tar, dirt and corrugations we have been on (other than the Rear door issue as below) however the dust is now starting to sneak through the seals despite us wiping them quite a lot.

Rear Door – We have now found an issue with dust and how the rear door locks sit on a Pajero and that it’s prone to seizing up which means that the door cannot be opened. This happened to us recently on Gibb River Road which meant we couldn’t access our fridge in the back or items in drawers making it also very difficult get access to the rear wheel and even the jack. The main issue with this is that the locking mechanism sits outside of the rear door seal and is in the elements. After three days we were able to get it opened by removing the cowling at the rear then squirting a can of WD40 through one of the holes towards the inside of the latch mechanism. Alot of other vehicles have an inside escape latch however the Pajero doesn’t have this. In trying to resolve this with a local mechanic he also confirmed he had seen this happen before.

Fuel – In the prior review I discussed the relatively small fuel tank size of 88 litres compared to many other 4x4s in Australia. We have now opted for the additional fuel tank which allows us to carry a further 60 litres which really makes a difference and you don’t have to stop and top up all of the time. As we tow, we also carry additional jerry cans as well. We went for the tank from ARB which is called a Long Ranger and set us back a little over $2000. So far so good on that front.

If you aren’t going to go on any dirt roads or tracks and not going to go remote so as fuel might become an issue then you probably won’t find problems with the above items however that’s just not Australia or the purpose of getting a 4x4 is it?

Towing – We still find this is probably the largest negative with the Pajero. This is due to both how the rear tyre sits in the middle and low on the rear door and even with the partial fix of the rear wheel lift kit fitted, the door itself sits quite low. Given the height that the hitch sits on many vans and campers, opening of the rear door when the car is hitched up will be an issue more often than not.

In recently considering upgrading from our camper trailer to a full size van we started to look at also what we could actually tow ‘legally’ with the Pajero. The car sales person and marketing material for the Pajero will quote you tow mass sizes of 3000kg with a ball weight of 180kg and 2500kg with a ball mass of 250kg.
The 3 ton mass sounds quite impressive at the start but on closer examination thats really a misnomer as you will never get a heavier van at 3 ton with a ball mass of 180kg as the typical weight to ball mass ratio is 10%. This puts you back at the second scenario of 2500kg tare/250kg ball weight. Going further into this and using a calculation of approx 500kg of weight you might add to the van such as fuel cans, gas, water (remembering 100 litres is 100kg) then your clothes and other items it really only lets you tow to a maximum of 2000kg unloaded. Suspension and springs will also have to be upgraded as the rear end will also sag. We have now gone through three sets of rear springs in trying to deal with the sag in the rear from towing and have recently purchased the 400kg constant load spring from ARB to give that a go.

This brings me back to the conclusion in the prior review that the Pajero is only really designed to tow smaller and lighter vans and camper trailers and is definitely not in the same class for towing as Landcruiser and numerous other Duel Cab options that are in the market these days. We’ve see some reviews that people see on the road a lot of Pajeros towing quite large vans, as we have seen, however looking at the different masses then they cannot all be towing legally and more than likely is the reason we see them towing at 80kmph with a line of semi trailers bearing down on them. We have also noticed that in car magazine towing reviews for Pajeros they always only use a Jayco at about 1800kg unloaded (or similar), clearly supplied by Mitsubishi, for obvious reasons!!!

To try and finish on a positive, overall we have had no major mechanical issues to date and we have taken it on a lot of tar, dirt and everything in between. There has been one official recall to do with the timing chain tensioner that we had fixed and there’s a small leak starting to develop where the oil filter mounting bracket bolts onto the block that could possibly be a warranty claim. More recently there was a major/large scale recall where looking at the VIN’s in the media MY14 Pajeros (as mine is) where included but at the time of writing I haven’t received a letter or anything from Mitsubishi as I did with the prior recall.

If you can deal with the negatives both in this and the prior review then the Pajero is one of the cheaper options in getting a 4x4. Reliability, all cars sold in Australia should be reliable to the point we have found the Pajero to be so I don’t really call that out to be a major positive. However if you want it to tow then I would still look elsewhere.

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TransmissionAutomatic

Great well priced 4wd that drives like a car

I recently bought a Pajero VR-X 2014. Had this vehicle for about 4 months. I have had Toyotas and Nissans in the past but none of them compare to the Pajero. This vehicle definitely lives up to Mitsubishis claims. It has a lot of power, drives like a sedan (none of that annoying role) the seats are very comfortable, the vision from every seating position is amazing (great for short people and kids ) and compared to it's competitors it is very well priced. Would not hesitate in buying another one. I do a lot a freeway driving and I am averaging 8.8 litres per 100 which I am very happy with.
The way it drives, the vision, the price, the warranty (not that I think I will need it), the fuel economy.
Would have liked a full hard cover for the spare wheel.

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4 comments
I want to know how much price you got your MY14 VRX pajero?Would also like to know your price MY 14 ??? What about the GPS, spoken street names? speed limits? Red light & speed cameras? Sensible directions? Bluetooth OK? Music from phone? Ipod or android did it work????Agree with your + and -, but I find my VRX is too noisy and not as refined as a Prado.

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Details

Pajero NW VR-X Automatic
TransmissionAutomatic
Drive TypeFour Wheel Drive (4WD)
Fuel TypeDiesel
Wheels18" Alloy
ANCAP Safety Rating5 stars
Doors5
Seats7
Fuel Consumption9L/100km
Fuel Tank Capacity 88 L
Engine4 Cylinder, 3.2 L
Max Power147kW@3800rpm
Max Torque441Nm@2000rpm
Country of ManufactureJapan
Manufacturer Warranty5 year(s)
Release dateJan 2011
Discontinuation dateDec 2014
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