Triton ClubCab creates jobs

At a time when world markets are taking strain and British and American banks need to be bailed out to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars, there is always fear about what effect the global financial turmoil will have on local economies and whether we will have to face the prospect of job losses.

Creating employment opportunities in the current climate isn’t easy so companies that do create additional jobs are to be commended.

Mercedes-Benz South Africa’s manufacturing plant in East London, where the C-Class is being built alongside Mercedes-Benz buses and trucks, is now also the venue where Mitsubishi Triton ClubCabs will be built.

Mercedes-Benz invested roughly R200-million in production facilities at the East London plant and created 200 jobs on the new assembly line of the Triton bakkie, which was recently launched to local media.

The Triton ClubCab has been toughened up substantially with the addition of components such as stronger front suspension mounting brackets and stiffer front springs to make it a more capable off-roader.

To test whether the new equipment would make a difference, we were given the opportunity to chuck it around a 4x4 course on a private game reserve. The locally produced Tritons come in petrol and diesel 4x2 and 4x4 derivatives.

The off-road course was split up into two sections—one for 4x2s and one for 4x4s. Oddly the 4x2 route featured tougher obstacles than the 4x4 route, but the 4x2s sailed through with little effort and conquered some pretty tricky terrain.

The interior of the ClubCab features two single seats with ample room behind them for toolboxes and such. The upholstery and instruments are quite plain, but it’s a comfortable enough interior.

Despite being a tougher bakkie overall than the Triton double-cabs, which were previously imported from Thailand, the Triton ClubCab feels composed both on and off-road.

Standard features include aircon, an MP3-compatible CD/radio and electric windows, yet the side mirrors aren’t electric and have to be adjusted by hand. Safety features include ABS with EBD and dual front airbags. The Triton ClubCabs range in price from R230 000 for the 2,5-litre diesel and R239 250 for the 3,5-litre V6 petrol to R297 000 for the 3,2-litre diesel 4x4. They are all fitted with a five-speed manual gearbox and come with a three-year/100 000km warranty and a five-year/100 000km service plan.

Mitsubishi Triton ClubCab
2,5-litre DI-D 4x2
100kW and 314Nm
R230 000
3,2-litre DI-D 4x4
118kW and 343Nm
R297 000
3,5-litre V6 petrol 4x2
131kW and 295Nm
R239 250


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