Instead of taking us on the highway, where we know the Mitsubishi Montero Sport go in a straight line well, Mitsubishi Motor Philippines Corporation decided that the best way to test out the facelifted Montero 4x2 GT and GLS is to bring us through the twists and turns of country roads, as well as the highs and lows of the hilly province of Bohol.
The pioneer of the Dynamic Shield design, now seen across the Mitsubishi lineup, gets an update that remarkably enhances the already-good looking fascia that the SUV has had since 2016. The new wheels go with the evolution of the exterior, bulked up and even more angular than before. The GLS features the same wheel design as the GT, albeit with a monochrome finish, while the GT’s sports a two-tone look that adds more depth and flavor. It is also important to note that the GT has a rear spoiler, while the GLS does not.
There are now several new toys to play within the new Montero Sport especially in the GT variant. Standard across the range, however, is a brand new 8-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. This touchscreen unit is a remarkable improvement over the past incarnation. Mitsubishi have also installed a new climate control panel complete with knobs that minimize driver distraction. Middle-row cupholders are different as well, with a slide-out mechanism instead of the upward-opening design of the pre-facelift. A welcome addition to the entire range is a pair of USB ports for charging, and a power-plug for powering any device.
Exclusive to the 4x2 GT is a power tailgate, powered leather driver seat, and an all-digital gauge cluster that is oodles cooler than the analog and digital set you have on the GLS.
Being behind the wheel of the new Montero Sport is as familiar as riding a bike. It features the same tried-and-tested formula that made it a hit with Filipinos when it first launched – a nicely weighted steering wheel, a tight turning radius, and a responsive diesel engine and transmission. It’s a tried and tested formula. Inclines and curves didn’t phase the vehicle, so it still handles the same and is nicely planted even on dusty roads.
The backseat of the Montero Sport is much like the front, you still get the same old song and dance. Over the course of the trip, several colleagues of mine reported that the ride quality is actually better than the previous iteration. It seems highly unlikely since pre-facelift models have quite a bit of mileage on them and their suspension may be a little worn in. Comparing the ride quality of the new and old models will be like an apple-to-apple comparison, given that one of the apples is past its sell-by-date.
That being said, it’s still a good ride. Even if it has a solid-rear-axle, the bumps are well controlled and the cabin remains rattle free. The NVH levels are actually better than ever since the engine can’t be heard as much anymore along with the road noise. It’s still not on the level of a crossover or sedan, however.
I’ve said this during the course of the entire trip, Mitsubishi has improved something that’s already been proven, further cementing the Montero’s position in the market. MMPC found success with this model, and this facelift is proof that the company listens to its consumers. The Montero Sport was a good choice for an SUV in the Philippines, but this facelift just makes it great – a proper evolution of a top-seller. In a nutshell, it’s a familiar recipe, with prime ingredients added to the mix.
2020 Mitsubishi Montero Sport GT Exterior Photo Gallery