Ever since Mitsubishi teased its new multipurpose vehicle (MPV) designed for the Southeast Asian market, people had been anticipating the release of the all-new Xpander. One can argue that it looks a lot like its cousin Montero Sport, except that it has a smaller body. Nevertheless, it is a fresh introduction to the segment, which is fought tightly by other leading nameplates like the Toyota Avanza and Honda Mobilio.
To even bring the hype up, the Xpander was put to the facilities of the ASEAN New Car Assessment Program (NCAP). This is the first time that the organization tested an MPV, in which Mitsubishi was able to secure a remarkable 4 stars, with an overall score of 71.66 over 100 points. This is notably higher than the Avanza’s 50.98 points back in 2014.
For the Adult Occupant Protection (AOP) category, the Xpander achieved and evaluation result of 39.08 points out of 50. The Japanese 7-seater MPV is equipped with standard dual airbags and frontal Seatbelt Reminder System (SBR) for driver and passenger. The vehicle performed well on impact test as it garnered 'good' to 'marginal' protection for the front passengers – both frontal and side impacts.
In addition, the Xpander is fitted with standard ISOFIX and top tether. With these features, the debuting MPV scored good on the Child Occupant Protection (COP) category, where it scored 18.69 over 25 points. It is also fitted with Emergency Stop Signal that may come as either standard or optional in the local market. With this and other techs, the Xpander got 13.89 points out of 25 for the Safety Assist Technologies (SAT) category.
"I am pleased that Mitsubishi has made the initiative to equip their models with safety technologies that are able to prevent a crash from occurring. The technologies provide value added benefits to the models’ strong crashworthiness structure. Thus, I would like to encourage other manufacturers to follow this positive footstep so that more road users will reap the benefit from them."
Dr. Ir. Khairil Anwar Abu Kassim ASEAN NCAP Secretary-General
On local shores, Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corp. (MMPC) will be holding numerous special vehicle viewing of the upcoming Xpander. In line to this, pre-booking of the MPV is still available.