The essential pickup: 5 key features of the Mitsubishi Strada Athlete

The essential pickup: 5 key features of the Mitsubishi Strada Athlete

MANILA: Gone are the days when pickups were pure workhorses bereft of creature comforts, along with the polish and elegance (and perhaps even imagination) of other vehicle types such as sedans and SUVs.

While the pickup category was obviously primarily bred for moving cargo and payload from Point A to Point B, over the years, auto brands have leveled up on features, comfort, and technology — making many pickups as aesthetically pleasing as other, more “domesticated” segments. In fact, the some pickups offer more in the way of accoutrements and niceties within compared to other categories particularly in lower price points.

And perhaps that’s why many Filipinos are now fond of pickup trucks. Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corporation (MMPC) says that, “Be it for work or play — or both — these massive machines have become a ubiquitous sight, not only in the rural provinces but also within the busy streets of Metro Manila.”

MMPC knows what it’s talking about, of course. In particular, its Mitsubishi Strada offering has long been a favorite of pickup lovers who perfectly embody the notion that dichotomous values can coexist. The Strada is both tough yet refined, versatile yet specially engineered, strong yet refined.

We take a closer look at its top-tier Mitsubishi Strada Athlete 4WD AT in particular and run down the list of what makes it such a compelling vehicle to have — whether you’re a pickup person or not.

  1. Muscular, aggressive exterior

Mitsubishi Strada Athlete

Pickups are intrinsically capable, powerful vehicles. The Strada Athlete certainly looks the part. With ONE Heavyweight Champion Brandon Vera himself as the model’s endorser, there’s no mistaking what it stands for — strength, heightened performance, and sportiness. Visually, this is expressed in a number of ways. The vehicle bears side decals extending from the rear doors up to the tailgate. Its signature Dynamic Shield gets black trimmings for a more serious look. The pickup also gets side mirror caps, roof, a sports bar, and 18-inch alloy wheels to cut an unmistakably strong presence. The Strada Athlete also boasts a beautiful color exclusive to the line: Sunflare Orange Pearl.

  1. Thoughtful interior touches

The interior of the Strada Athlete hews consistently to the image portrayed on the surface. Black and orange touches add a dynamic, youthful look — from the supple orange leather and orange stitching. Mitsubishi says the molded center panel and connecting console are more akin to an SUV rather than a pickup. The driver-focused layout also makes controls more easily accessible to the one behind the wheel.

Mitsubishi Strada Athlete

Speaking of the driver, he or she will get eight-way power-adjustable seats, a tilt-adjustable and telescopic steering wheel, and cruise control. In aid of controlling NVH (noise, vibration, and harshness), the Athlete’s floor console is padded and double-stitched, along with the center armrest and door trim. Mitsubishi also enhanced the sound insulation and vibration damping.

  1. A suite of safety features

The Strada Athlete assures that its driver gets all the safety assistance available to keep himself and everyone aboard safe. Visual and auditory alerts are given by the Forward Collision Mitigation (FCM) feature, while the Ultrasonic Misacceleration Mitigation System (UMS) “prevents adverse pedal misapplication.”

To avoid being surprised by vehicles falling into the driver’s blind spot, the Strada Athlete gets Blind Spot Warning with Lane Change Assist (BSW with LCA), which alerts the driver when vehicles come behind from either side. Meanwhile, Rear Cross-Traffic Alert (RCTA) warns the driver when an oncoming vehicle is detected as the Strada Athlete is reversing out of a parking spot. Finally, the Multi-Around Monitor “makes parking easier with its guiding and expected course lines.”

Mitsubishi Strada Athlete

When laden with heavy cargo or when hooked to a trailer, the Strada Athlete continues to offer heightened safety through the Mitsubishi Active Stability and Traction Control (M-ASTC) and Trailer Stability Assist. The pickup also gets Hill Descent Control and Hill Start Assist.

  1. Power and efficiency

Under the Strada Athlete’s hood rumbles Mitsubishi’s reliable 2.4-liter MIVEC Turbo Clean Diesel engine, outputting 181hp and 430Nm. The powerful yet frugal mill is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission “for a convenient drive even within city traffic.”

Mitsubishi Strada Athlete engine

  1. Off-roading ability

The 4x4 variant of the Strada Athlete is unafraid of difficult terrain. Its Super Select 4WD-II is a “state-of-the-art four wheel drive system controls the power and braking to each wheel for maximum stability and traction whatever the surface.” It’s also easy to use, as a selector dial on the center console easily allows the driver to choose and change the setting.

Mitsubishi Strada Athlete competitors

The 2H mode is for normal roads; 4H is for rougher terrain. Mitsubishi also says settings can be changed even at a speed of up to 100kph. Full off-roading prowess can be realized in either  4HLc or 4Llc settings (the vehicle must be stopped before choosing these modes).

Clearly, the Mitsubishi Strada Athlete is an alpha example of the pickup that is not only an essential worker but a refined one as well.

For more information, check out the MMPC website at or the nearest dealership.

Photos from Mitsubishi Motors Philippines Corporation

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