You don’t have to know cars to know that the Mitsubishi Xpander is the star the 2017 Gaikindo Indonesia International Auto Show (GIIAS). The second half of yesterday’s press day was open to the public, and the MMC booth was swamped by potential customers wanting a closer look at the new model.

That’s not surprising, as the Xpander is a new entrant in Indonesia’s core “Low MPV” segment where the Toyota Avanza, Daihatsu Xenia, Suzuki Ertiga and Honda Mobilio dominate. Even so, the new boy stands out thanks to SUV-inspired styling. That’s a trick Honda used for the BR-V, but the Xpander’s design is more bold and modern.

The Xpander’s unique selling point is its looks, a faithful reproduction of last year’s XM concept and highly-stylised for a car in this utilitarian class. There’s the company’s current Dynamic Shield face, a unique three-tier lighting layout, flared wheel arches and an X-theme for the rear with distinctive LED signatures.

The MPV rides on two-tone 16-inch alloys and has class-leading 205 mm ground clearance. But for those who don’t dig the high-riding SUV style, MMC is offering an optional bodykit that includes a front airdam, side skirts and a rear bumper extension. It’s one of the thickest bodykits we’ve seen around, and we prefer the original look. To each their own though. What say you?

Also on the original accessories catalogue are chrome wing mirror covers, window visors, a chrome muffler cutter, and an engine hood emblem that spells out “Xpander” above MMC’s diamond logo on the grille. Not all of these are on this top Ultimate spec show car, though.

The Mitsubishi Xpander is available in five trim levels – GLX, GLS, Exceed, Sport and Ultimate – and is priced from Rp 189,050,000 (RM60,843) to Rp 245,350,000 (RM78,968). It is made in MMC’s new plant in Bekasi, West Java, with a volume of 80,000 units per year. Exports to ASEAN markets will begin in 2018.

GALLERY: Mitsubishi Xpander Sport A/T