Ten Point Test

Auto Trader Ten Point Test rating: 76%

This big boy first saw the light of day 25 years ago – and first hit the UK’s streets two years later.

Available as a long-wheel-base five door option or shorter three door model the Mitsubishi Shogun is worth a look for anyone considering a 4X4.

1. Looks 8/10

Striking. Given the fact the version we drove is not only called Shogun but Warrior it needs to have some presence, and it does in spades. Not least with the help of those 18” alloy wheels. With a quarter of a century of motoring under its belt the Shogun has iconic 4X4 looks second only to the pioneering trio of Land Rover, Range Rover and Jeep. If your eye roves admiringly towards the biggest set of wheels in the car park you’ll love the Shogun.

2. Looks inside 8/10

The Shogun’s chunky styling continues inside. As you’d expect the driving position is excellent, offering a superb view. Likewise the interior benefits from an uncluttered view, involving for the driver without being overwhelming, combining functionality with comfort in just the right ratio. This is a very easy car to get used to – even with the handbrake on the “wrong” side.

3. Practicality 10/10

The Shogun’s flexibility is a key strength. The long-wheel-base version we drove is intended as a five-seater and in that guise, comes with a reasonably generous boot. However, a third row can be flipped from the floor to transform it into a seven-seater or you can create an absolutely cavernous boot space by turning it into a two-seater.

4. Ride and Handling 6/10

You wouldn’t expect the handling on a 4X4 of this size to be razor-sharp, and it isn’t. Work within its limits and the Shogun handles OK but you won’t want to be throwing it at corners too vigorously. Motorway cruising at speed is comfortable but fairly noisy.

5. Performance 8/10

Need to make a quick getaway? Then look elsewhere. The Shogun needs 13.8 seconds to lumber its way to 62mph (100km/h) and can reach a top speed of 106mph. But then it does weigh more than three tons. The nine times Dakar Rally-winner does however compensate with enormous pulling power which casts it as the genuine article in a world of soft-roaders and cosmetic 4X4s.

6. Running Costs 5/10

People sometimes look a bit stern in 4X4s, maybe it’s just concern as to whether they are going to get to the next petrol station or not. On average you can only expect a measly 10.5 miles of motoring in return for each gallon of petrol. Just drive it in town and you’ll see that dip below nine miles per gallon. Ouch. Ownership from new comes with a three year unlimited mileage warranty plus three year Pan European Recovery Service. Service intervals are every 12 months or 9,000 miles. Owners from new should anticipate the Shogun losing the best part of a third of its value in the first year. A high insurance group adds another OUCH.

7. Reliability 8/10

This is a proper off-roader and its reliability reflects this. Owners also benefit from the fact Mitsubishi have had a quarter of a century to perfect the Shogun.

8. Safety 6/10

Driver and front passenger get front and side airbags and it’s seatbelts for everyone else. Illuminated steps should reduce the chance of driver or passengers taking a tumble when getting in or out of the car. The Shogun’s body features “impact-absorbing crushable zones” for your protection too.

9. Equipment 8/10

Our (very nearly) top of the range model featured plenty of value including leather seats, air conditioning, cruise control, 10 CD auto-changer, 18-inch alloys, a third row of foldaway seats and of course, that impressive 4X4 capability.

10. X-Factor 9/10

It’s certainly got the bling factor but more memorable than that is its 4X4 prowess. You don’t win desert rallys for nothing and if you can actually get some off-road use out of your Shogun it’ll make you feel a whole lot better about the vehicle’s shortcomings on the tarmac.

Key facts

Model tested: Mitsubishi Shogun LWB 3.2 DI-D Warrior Auto
On the road price: £31,044
Price range: £25,794-£32,044
Tested: October 2006
Road tester: Adrian Higgins

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