For 2005, Mitsubishi drops the Montero XLS package and markets its largest SUV in one trim line, the Limited. Other changes include new 17-inch alloy wheels, two new exterior colours and a standard tire pressure monitoring system.
The Montero is powered by a 3.8-litre V6 engine, mated to a five-speed automatic transmission with Sportronic Sequential Shift manual mode and ActiveTrac four-wheel-drive with rear-wheel, full-time all-wheel and 4WD high and low range with locked centre differential. The Montero holds seven passengers, with a third-row seat that can be folded into a well in the cargo area floor, or removed entirely.
The Montero Limited includes auto-off halogen headlights, fog lamps, variable intermittent wipers, roof rails, four ventilated brake discs, power sunroof, rear wiper, 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic climate control, rear air conditioning and heating, wood and leather-wrapped steering wheel, cruise, power windows and locks, leather interior, 10-way driver and 8-way passenger power heated seats, and CD player with seven speakers.
Unlike many tough-talking SUVs, the Montero has credibility: for eighteen years, specially-prepped versions (called the Pajero overseas) have brought home trophies from the Paris-to-Dakar rally. It’s the same length as the company’s Endeavor, but it’s wider and taller, and has a longer wheelbase. It also shares the Endeavor’s engine, but it’s heavier, and the manual-mode transmission can come in handy when you really need to get all that bulk moving.
The Montero’s four-wheel-drive system is quite sophisticated, with a switch that activates an electric motor to select drive modes. Shifting from two- to four-wheel-drive can be done at speeds up to 100 km/h. The exterior styling borders on odd, but the interior is as nice as many higher-priced SUVs, and that warranty is a thing of beauty. A major drawback is the company’s limited dealer network, which may make it difficult for some buyers to purchase or service their vehicles conveniently.
The Montero is built in Mizushima, Japan.