The pick-up truck scene in Malaysia is seriously heating up, and it is especially competitive at the top end, with modes like the Nissan Navara Pro-4X, Isuzu D-Max X-Terrain, and the Mitsubishi Triton Athlete. All of them are priced at around RM142k, and they look really good, too!

Our focus this time is on the Triton Athlete, which officially replaces the Triton Adventure X as the new range-topper. It’s available in the Sun Flare Orange Pearl colour you see here, as well as White Diamond and Jet Black Mica. Aesthetically, it gets a big black Dynamic Shield nose with gloss black under garnish, gloss black radiator grille, side mirror caps, door handles, side steps, and 18-inch wheels.

Moving inside, the new Athlete gets orange stitching on the leather-wrapped steering, gear knob and handbrake lever (but not on the seats), plus LED illuminated scuff plates. Our leather seats are still in black, unlike the Thai version, which is very heavy on orange.

All else remains the same, which means under the hood is a 2.4 litre MIVEC turbodiesel making 181 PS and 430 Nm of torque, paired to a six-speed automatic transmission and a Super Select 4WD-II system with hill descent control.

Safety-wise, there’s Forward Collision Mitigation (FCM), Blind Spot Warning with Lane Change Assist (BSW with LCA), Rear Cross-Traffic Alert (RCTA), Ultrasonic Misacceleration Mitigation System (UMS), Auto High Beam (AHB) and seven airbags (front, side, curtain, driver’s knee). There’s also an all-round monitor (360-degree parking camera), dashcam and 7.0-inch touchscreen head unit with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as standard.