The engine is a freshly developed 2.2-litre 150bhp diesel unit and the optional 6-speed auto gearbox is also new. Plus there are new drive modes for the four-wheel-drive drivetrain; gravel, snow, sand and rock settings have been added, each one varying how power is needed to optimise performance. As ever, all L200 models are fitted with either 'Super-Select' 4WD (which delivers optimum traction and handling characteristics for any given surface); or 'Easy-Select 4WD' (which simplifies switching between drive modes for different road surfaces).
There's only so much you can do to make a pick-up enjoyable to drive but Mitsubishi has made more effort in this regard as part of this update, conscious that any L200 is likely to spend the majority of its time on tarmac. There's re-developed suspension, plus there are shock absorbing body mounts, which absorb vibrations and aim to provide a quieter, more comfortable cabin. Those damping updates are welcome but since there's still the same combination of solid chassis and live rear axle, things can still get a bit bouncy from time to time unless you're careful. Getting from rest to 62mph occupies around 10.5s and as before, the L200 can be driven in either 2WD or 4WD on tarmac or off road. This vehicle can also tow up to 3.5 tonnes. And for a pick-up, there's a reasonably tight turning circle too.
The visual changes made to this improved L200 model aren't difficult to spot. The key update is a bolder, more aggressive front end that features a fresh version of Mitsubishi's 'Dynamic Shield' grille. Plus there's a higher bonnet line and beefier-looking lamps now located higher up. Newly sculpted body curves with contrasting sharp lines, extended wheel flares and bright accents add a bit more street side presence too. And Mitsubishi continues to claim that this vehicle's 'athleticism' is expressed through sharp, muscular surfaces and a taut 'belt line'.
Take a seat at the wheel and as before, you'll find a driver-centric dashboard that centres attention on the road and includes much of the kind of important equipment you'd expect to see in a premium car. There weren't too many changes made as part of the update package changes, but Mitsubishi has tried to give the cabin a higher quality feel with new surrounding frame trim for the switch panels and air outlets. Plus you get softer-touch materials and classy stitching on the floor console, armrests and parking brake. Most UK buyers will continue to want the Double Cab body style with its rear seat.
L200 pricing sits in the £22,000 to £38,000 bracket, which as expected, makes it competitive in its segment. Mitsubishi wants to point out that because nothing's been changed dimensionally over the previous model, popular load bay accessories you might have had in mind (a load bay cover for instance) will all still fit. You might also want to specify the 'Multi Around Monitor', which generates a bird's eye view image of the area around the vehicle when parking.
There's plenty of safety tech. This L200 can be equipped with four key safety features. there's 'Forward Collision Mitigation', which can detect vehicles and pedestrians ahead. Then there's 'Blind Spot Warning', which helps avoid sideswiping another vehicle when changing lanes by detecting vehicles behind or at the rear quarter and alerting the driver with an audible alert and flashing light in their door mirror. Next up is 'Rear Cross Traffic Alert' which, in the same way, helps avoid collisions when reversing. And we like the 'Ultrasonic Misacceleration Mitigation System' feature too. This reduces accidents resulting from improper use of the accelerator when moving off or reversing in car parks and other confined spaces.
There's no doubt that the changes made to this L200 have freshed its showroom proposition but essentially, we're being offered much the same package that was available before. And since the pick-up that was available before was a best seller, that's not necessarily a bad thing.
You can see why so many pick-up buyers choose this one, whether their need is to transport quadbikes and surfboards or hardcore and shovels. As before, it's tough, good looking and offers a wide range of choice but now, it's that bit easier to live with too. All of which, more than ever, makes this Mitsubishi a vehicle that customers in this segment can't ignore.