The Mitsubishi Delica is a range of cabover vans and pickup trucks designed and built by the Japanese automaker Mitsubishi since 1968. It was originally based on a cabover van and pickup truck introduced the previous year, also called the Delica, its name a contraction of the English language phrase Delivery car. This pickup truck, and a commercial van derived from it has received many names in export markets, being sold as the L300 (later L400) in Europe, Jamaica (discontinued after the third generation) and New Zealand, Express and Starwagon in Australia, and plain Mitsubishi Van and Wagon in the United States. The passenger car versions were known as Delica Star Wagon from 1979 until the 1994 introduction of the Delica Space Gear, which became simply Space Gear in Europe at least. The most recent version (not available as a commercial vehicle) is called the Delica D:5. With the exception of the first and fourth generations, all five generations are still sold in various international markets.
Hyundai Motor Company
|Body and chassis|
First generation (1968–1979)Edit
|Assembly||Japan: Nagoya (Nagoya Plant)|
Indonesia: Pulo Gadung, East Jakarta (PT Krama Yudha Ratu Motor)
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||3-door van|
The production of the Delica light commercial cab-over pickup began in July 1968. It received the chassis code T100, in line with the recently (January 1968) introduced "T90" Canter. Using a KE44 1,088 cc engine producing 58 PS (43 kW), its maximum payload was 600 kg (1,323 lb) and had a top end speed of 115 km/h (71 mph). A year later, in line with consumer needs, a cargo van and a passenger van were added to the line-up. The passenger van, discontinued in 1976, was called the 'Delica Coach' and could seat nine people in three rows of seats. The engine was upgraded to 62 PS (46 kW) in 1969.
In March 1971, a slightly facelifted version, called the Delica 75, arrived. This (the T120) received a small grille rather than the naked metal front of the earliest Delicas, and a new 1.4-liter Neptune (4G41) engine rated at 64 kilowatts (86 hp) was added to the line-up. The smaller 1.1-liter engine may have remained available in a 600 kilograms (1,300 lb) version of the truck but if so, it soon vanished entirely.
After a fall 1974 facelift, the Delica received a new nose with lots of plastic cladding and double headlights, now mounted beneath the swage line. It was now known only as the "Delica 1400", as this was the only engine with which it was available (mention of a Delica 1200 is most likely apocryphal, perhaps an issue of confusion arising from the "120" chassis code). A longer wheelbase (T121) 1-ton truck was added in 1976.
In export markets, this car was usually called simply the Colt T100 / T120. It became a massive success in Indonesia, where "Colt" became synonymous with minibus. Mitsubishi dominated the market and the T120 remained in production until 1982. The nametag was revived in February 1991 with a rebadged version of the Suzuki Carry Futura. Record, a Greek manufacturer of agricultural vehicles, plagiarized the Delica T120 design (even using the same windshield) for their fibreglass-bodied "GS2000" truck.
Second generation (1979–present)Edit
1984–1985 Mitsubishi L300 Express (SD) van (Australia)
|Also called||L300 (Sri Lanka) |
Chrysler L300 Express (Australia)
Ford Husky (South Africa)
Mitsubishi Colt/L300 (Indonesia)
Mitsubishi L300 Express (Australia)
Isuzu Bison (Indonesia)
Mahindra Voyager (India)
1987–2017, 2019–present (Philippines)
|Assembly||Japan: Nagoya (Nagoya Plant)|
Indonesia: Pulo Gadung, East Jakarta (PT Krama Yudha Ratu Motor) (until 2017); Bekasi, West Java (PT Mitsubishi Motors Krama Yudha Indonesia) (2017-present)
South Korea: Ulsan (Hyundai)
Philippines: Cainta, Rizal (Mitsubishi Motors Philippines) (until 2014); Santa Rosa, Laguna (2015-2017)
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||2-door pickup|
|Layout||front engine, rear-wheel-drive |
front engine, four-wheel-drive
|Engine||1.4 L I4 (gasoline)|
1.6 L I4 (gasoline)
1.8 L I4 (gasoline)
2.0 L I4 (gasoline)
2.3 L I4 (diesel)
2.5 L I4 (diesel)
|Wheelbase||SWB: 2,200 mm (86.6 in)|
LWB: 2,350 mm (92.5 in)
|Length||SWB: 4,100 mm (161.4 in)|
LWB: 4,260 mm (167.7 in)
Van: 4,445 mm (175.0 in)
|Width||1,670–1,690 mm (65.7–66.5 in) (van)|
1,695 mm (66.7 in) (pickup)
|Height||1,970–1,990 mm (77.6–78.3 in) (van)|
1,795 mm (70.7 in) (pickup)
The Delica series was replaced in June 1979 by an all new design, bringing overall width up to the maximum 1,690-millimetre (67 in) dictated by Japanese regulations for "compact" vehicles. Suspended at the front by an independent wishbone construction and a leaf spring at the rear, the Delica also features a sliding side door and one-piece gas strut tailgate. The line-up was expanded to include ten model variations encompassing a wide variety of passenger (eight seats in a three/two/three configuration), cargo and recreational applications. A four-wheel drive option was made available in 1982, a first in the Japanese van market. Engines were all four-cylinders well known from MMC's passenger cars and included the 1,439 cc, 80 PS (59 kW) Saturn (4G33) and 1.6-liter Saturn (4G32) engines. A 1.8-liter Sirius (4G62) version producing 100 PS (74 kW) appeared in May 1980, and a 2.0-liter Sirius (4G63B) petrol version became optional in 4WD versions from November 1983. A 2.3-liter Astron (4D55) diesel appeared in October 1982 and was replaced by the larger 2.5-liter Astron (4D56) in 1986.
The four-wheel drive version of the Delica was first introduced to the Japanese market in October 1982. This versatile vehicle utilized a modified version of the Mitsubishi Pajero's chassis, albeit usually with smaller engines (originally only the 1.8-liter gasoline). After the introduction of the third generation Delica, the truck (separate cab) version of the second generation continued to be built until 1994. Japanese consumers were liable for higher amounts of annual road tax due to the larger engines installed in higher trim level packages.
Chrysler Australia introduced the SA series Delica to the Australian market on 14 April 1980 under the name "Chrysler L300 Express" after debuting at the Adelaide Motor Show in 12 April. After acquiring control of the Chrysler Australia operations in the same month, Mitsubishi Motors renamed the firm Mitsubishi Motors Australia in October 1980. This resulted in the rebranding of the L300 Express as a Mitsubishi. Fitted with a 1.6-liter engine and four-speed manual, both van (three-seater commercial) and wagon (eight-seater) variants were offered, with the commercial (van) version available with or without side rear windows. The utility (pickup) version was not sold in Australia, as the L200 Express covered that segment of the market. In November 1981 the SB series was introduced, now fitted with radial ply tires on larger diameter wheels, thus increasing the payload capacity from 925 to 1,000 kilograms (2,039 to 2,205 lb). The following month, Mitsubishi introduced the high-roofed luxury "Deluxe" trim, fitted with electric sunroof and cloth upholstery. The next update to the SB series arrived in October 1982, resulting in the "Deluxe" trim being renamed "Starwagon" and gaining a larger 1.8-liter engine—offered with a five-speed overdrive manual or optional three-speed automatic. The "Star Wagon" (this was written either as one or as two words) moniker was also used on examples assembled by Todd Motors in New Zealand, albeit with the 65 PS (48 kW) 1.6-liter engine. Mitsubishi extended the availability of the 1.8-liter engine to the lower-specification variants, albeit in automatic guise only. The 1.8 was also available in the long wheelbase, high roof, panel van version.
From May 1983, the L300 Express received rectangular headlights in chrome surrounds as part of the SC iteration. The SC also featured newly designed black resin bumpers and adjustments to the front suspension spring rate to improve ride and handling. The four-wheel drive version, badged "4WD", came in October 1983 as a 1.8-liter model with floor-mounted five-speed manual only, therefore becoming a seven-passenger model by losing the front-row center seat. After another facelift in October 1984, the car became the SD series, introducing better equipment and black headlight surrounds along with a black trim piece between the headlights on "Starwagon" and "4WD" trims. The SD revision also upgraded the "4WD" to a 2.0-liter engine, with the 1.8-liter standard issue in a new long-wheelbase commercial (van) model. A final minor update, the SE series appeared in 1986.
This generation has been produced in the Philippines since 1987 as the "Mitsubishi L300 Versa Van" (discontinued in April 2012) as well as the Cab/Chassis variant where local coach builders assemble rear bodies for passenger and cargo hauling purposes. Variations such as the FB (family business), PET (personal and equipment transport), WT (water tight aluminum van) and DS (drop side) have been made to cater to those needs. In 2010, an extended rear body variant for the FB variant called the Exceed was added. In 2014, local truck body manufacturer Centro Manufacturing launched a minibus version of the L300 called the XV Mikrobus. It is built on the FB Exceed platform and is meant to be used as a public utility vehicle, a school bus, or an ambulance. It is also meant to revive the Versa Van and to be an alternative to the FB variant. In 2017, Mitsubishi Motors Philippines announced that the L300's diesel engine will be updated to comply with the DENR's and the LTFRB's Euro 4 standardization project. In April 2019, Mitsubishi Motors Philippines announced that the L300 will be fitted with a new CRDi engine.
This generation is still in production in Indonesia as the "Mitsubishi Colt L300", equipped with the 2.5-liter 4D56 diesel engine. A gasoline engine was also available for a short period, but due to lack of demand, was discontinued. Since 2010, Isuzu Indonesia have sold this second generation Delica as the Isuzu Bison—available in pickup and minibus versions with an Isuzu Panther-sourced 4JA1L 2.5-litre diesel engine with 80 PS (59 kW). The Bison costs a bit more than a corresponding L300. The production of the L300 was moved from the former PT Krama Yudha Ratu Motor plant in Pulo Gadung, East Jakarta to the new Mitsubishi Cikarang plant in Bekasi, West Java beginning in April 2017.
In South Korea, Hyundai built the second generation Delica as the "Hyundai Porter", replacing an earlier model with the same name. South Korean production of this Porter continued alongside the third generation Delica, which was marketed by Hyundai as the "Grace". This Porter was replaced by an indigenously developed third generation Porter in March 1996.
From 1997 to 2000, the car was sold by Mahindra & Mahindra in India as the "Mahindra Voyager", but priced too high it was taken out of production after only a little over two years. The Voyager did meet with some success as an ambulance, but this association only further prevented prospective private purchasers. Unique to the Mahindra Voyager is the fitment of PSA's 2.5-liter XD3P diesel engine, producing 72.5 PS (53 kW) DIN at 4000 rpm.
Third generation (1986–1994)Edit
A Mitsubishi Delica 4x4 van
|Also called||Mitsubishi L300|
Mitsubishi Express (Australia)
PO5 (Sri Lanka)
Mitsubishi Starwagon (Australia)
Mitsubishi Versa Van
Mitsubishi Van/Wagon (US)
Dodge 1000 (Mexico)
Soueast Delica (China)
1994–2013 (extended production)
1996–2013 (Soueast Motors)
|Assembly||Japan: Nagoya (Nagoya Plant)|
South Korea: Ulsan
Taiwan: Taipei (CMC)
China: Fuzhou (Soueast Motors)
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||2-door pickup|
|Layout||Mid engine, rear-/four-wheel drive|
|Engine||1,439 cc 4G33 I4 (gasoline)|
1,597 cc 4G32 I4 (gasoline, P02/12)
1,795 cc 4G62 I4 (gasoline)
1,997 cc 4G63 I4 (gasoline)
2,351 cc 4G64 I4 (gasoline, P24)
2,476 cc 4D56 I4 (diesel)
2,476 cc 4D56 I4 (t/c diesel)
2,607cc D4BB I4 (diesel)
|Wheelbase||2,235–2,435 mm (88.0–95.9 in)|
|Length||4,380–4,780 mm (172.4–188.2 in)|
4,945 mm (194.7 in) (Soueast Delica)
|Width||1,690 mm (66.5 in)|
1,695 mm (66.7 in) (Soueast Delica)
|Height||1,840–1,955 mm (72.4–77.0 in)|
1,970 mm (77.6 in) (Soueast Delica)
In June 1986, the Delica underwent its third full model change. More aerodynamic than previous versions, its monocoque body and extensive safety features proved very popular in Japan's fast-growing recreational vehicle market segment. The more rounded design was referred to as "soft cube" styling by Mitsubishi. Passenger versions continued to be sold as Delica Star Wagons, which became just plain "Starwagon" in Australia. The commercial version is called the "Express" in Australia. Two wheelbases have been offered. In 1990, the Australian market received the naturally aspirated diesel engine as an option; this was the first Delica so equipped in that market.
Although the subsequent L400 Delica and Delica Space Gear were introduced in 1994, production of the L300 Starwagon continued for the Japanese market until 1998. The L300 Delica (van versions only) also remained in production for export markets. These export markets received a facelift in 1999, released in September of that year in Australia. In Japan the commercial Delica range was replaced by a badge-engineered Mazda Bongo under an OEM deal which began in November 1999.
In May 2013, Mitsubishi discontinued the commercial version of the third generation Delica in Australia—badged as the Mitsubishi Express—due to its inferior safety. The Express was the last new car to be sold in Australia with a one-star ANCAP rating. The Express had changed little since it received a minor model change in 2003.
A large range of engines were available, from a 1.4-liter up to a 2.4-liter petrol, and also a 2.5-liter diesel and turbodiesel, plus a 2.6-liter naturally aspirated diesel. Rear- or four-wheel drive, several bodystyles and two different wheelbases made for a particularly extensive line-up. The four-wheel drive chassis was based on that of the contemporary Mitsubishi Pajero, although parts are seldom interchangeable. Late general export market versions received a carburetted 16-valve version of the 2.0-liter 4G63 four-cylinder, with 116 hp (87 kW) at 6,000 rpm.
Cargo versions are built by the China Motor Corporation in Taiwan. This generation Delica was also built under license by Hyundai of South Korea, where it was called the "Hyundai Grace" or "Hyundai H-100" in some Eurasian markets. Launched in December 1986, this version originally received the twin headlights as used in the US market versions, but after a front-end facelift the new more aerodynamic version received thinner and more rounded headlights. This version was called the "New Grace". Both the 2.4-liter gasoline and 2.5-liter turbodiesel inline-four engines were available, both Mitsubishi designs. Hyundai terminology resulted in the 4D56 diesel engine being renamed D4BX / D4BA.
- North America
From 1987 until 1990, Mitsubishi sold this model in small numbers in the United States as the "Wagon" for passenger versions and "Van" for windowless cargo versions. The US versions all received a 107 horsepower (80 kW) version of the 2.4-liter 4G64 engine. For model years 1990 and 1991 an LS version of the Wagon was added. Taiwanese-produced CMC Delica vans are sold in Mexico as the Dodge 1000 as of July 2007. The Mitsubishi Expo LRV replaced the Van/Wagon in 1992.
In the early 2000s, enthusiasts began importing the popular van to Canada. The 4WD turbo diesel van is also a common choice for Canadian postal workers who require a right hand drive vehicle.
- United Kingdom
Introduced for 1987, the British market received the new L300 with either the 1.6- petrol or 2.5-liter diesel engine. Both wheelbases were available.
Fourth generation (1994–2007)Edit
|Also called||Mitsubishi L400|
Mitsubishi Space Gear
Mitsubishi Starwagon (Australia)
|Body and chassis|
2 front doors, one slider on the left side, + a rear hatch 5-door:2 front doors, sliding doors on both sides + rear hatch
|Layout||Front engine, rear-wheel-drive layout|
Front engine with super select 4x4 drivetrain
Dongfeng Fengxing Lingzhi
|Engine||2.5 L 4D56 I4 (t/c diesel)|
2.4 L 4G64 I4 (gasoline)
2.8 L 4M40 I4 (t/c diesel)
3.0 L 6G72 V6 (gasoline)
1.3 L 4G13T I4 (turbo petrol)
1.5 L 4G15S I4 (petrol)
1.6 L 4G18S I4 (petrol)
2.0 L 4G94 I4 (petrol)
1.9 L D19 I4 (turbo diesel)
|Transmission||3-speed automatic with overdrive |
6 speed manual
4 speed automatic
|Wheelbase||2,800–3,000 mm (110.2–118.1 in)|
|Length||4,595–5,085 mm (180.9–200.2 in)|
|Width||1,695 mm (66.7 in)|
|Height||1,855–2,070 mm (73.0–81.5 in)|
|Curb weight||1,690–2,170 kg (3,730–4,780 lb)|
Released on 12 May 1994, the newest Delica received considerably more aerodynamic bodywork. No truck model was available of this generation, and passenger models were now called Delica Space Gear in the domestic Japanese market. Body specifications of the Space Gear in Japan ranged from XR, XG, Exceed, Super Exceed and Royal Exceed, and both long and short-wheelbase versions were available.
The fourth generation Delica is based on the engine and transmission of the Mitsubishi Pajero but unlike the Pajero of its time is of monocoque construction and lacks a separate chassis but still has full off road capabilities, with four-wheel drive, high and low ratio gears and differential locking. It has engine variations from 2.5 liters through to a 2.8-liter intercooled turbodiesel. A 2.4-liter and a 3.0-liter V6 petrol or gasoline engine with 12 or 24 valves, each with 4 gears and overdrive. Apart from the 2.8-liter diesel model they are available as a two or a four-wheel drive version.
In many export markets, the cargo versions of the fourth generation were called the Mitsubishi L400 while the passenger versions were called Mitsubishi Space Gear – without using the Delica nameplate at all.
In South Korea, Hyundai used the Mitsubishi Delica as the base vehicle for the Hyundai Starex (A1) manufactured between 1997 and 2007.
In Australia, this generation, known as the WA series was available in both cargo (Mitsubishi Express) and passenger (Mitsubishi Starwagon) versions. The Starwagon was available between September 1994 and 2003. The Express launched at the same time, but continued on until 2005. To differentiate the semi-bonneted WA Express from the cheaper, previous generation SJ series that sold alongside it, the WA models were disambiguated with the "Walk-Thru" designation.
The Australian Starwagons were made available in four levels of specification: GL, GLX, GLS and 4WD. Mitsubishi fitted the GL with a 2.0-liter carburetored inline-four, with the GLX gaining a fuel-injected 2.4-liter inline-four, and the GLS a 3.0-liter V6. Both four-cyliner engines were fitted standard with a five-speed manual transmission with optional four-speed column-shift automatic. The 3.0-liter GLS offered a four-speed floor-mounted automatic as its sole transmission option. The facelift model, released in 1996 saw the range rationalised with only the base GL and mid-range GLX models retained.
In 1996, the Delica was upgraded with a facelift model. The upgrade is mostly cosmetic with changes to the lighting clusters and front bodypanel, with the integration of a moulded bumper in place of the original three section bullbar. The engine was upgraded with an electronic control type distribution type jet pump and an electronic sidestep was made standard on the higher specification versions.
A final facelift was released in Japan in August 2002.
2005–2008 Taiwan faceliftEdit
In Taiwan, the third generation Delica continued to be produced and sold while the fourth generation Delica was simply named the Mitsubishi Space Gear, and was positioned above the third generation model. Initial versions of the Space gear produced and sold in Taiwan was identical to the series 2 Japanese facelift. However, in 2005 a final facelift was conducted exclusively in Taiwan with minor changes done to the grilles, front and rear bumpers, and front and rear light units.
Fifth generation (2007–present)Edit
|Assembly||Japan: Nagoya (Nagoya Plant)|
|Body and chassis|
|Platform||Mitsubishi GS platform|
|Engine||1,998 cc 4B11 I4 (gasoline)|
2,359 cc 4B12 I4 (gasoline)
2,268 cc 4N14 I4 (diesel)
|Transmission||CVT INVECS-III automatic|
|Wheelbase||2,850 mm (112.2 in)|
|Length||4,729 mm (186.2 in)|
|Width||1,796 mm (70.7 in)|
|Height||1,871 mm (73.7 in)|
On 30 October 2006, Mitsubishi Motors announced that the next generation of its monobox (one-box) minivan would be called the Delica D:5, based on the Concept D-5 prototype first exhibited at the 39th Tokyo Motor Show in 2005. It is an eight-seater, that features Mitsubishi's AWC four wheel drive system and an INVECS-III continuously variable transmission, coupled to a 4B12 2.4 L MIVEC inline-four engine. Based on a new global GS platform, new Delica features Mitsubishi's next-generation RISE safety body. A 2.0-liter version of this engine is also available.
It was released in Japan on 31 January 2007, with prices ranging from ¥2,614,500 to ¥3,412,500.
Available for January 2013 is the clean diesel variant of the D:5, which comes with Mitsubishi's brand new 2.2 L 4-cylinder turbo diesel engine (4N14) that produces 148 PS of power and 360 Nm of torque. Mitsubishi claims that this new 4N14 diesel engine is reliable at low revs and smooth acceleration until high revs. With reduced pressure and temperature in the cylinder, it achieves a low compression ratio of 14.9. The Mitsubishi Delica D:5 with Clean Diesel engine has a fuel consumption of 13.6 km/L based on JC08 Mode cycle.
The Delica D:5 was also launched by PT Krama Yudha Tiga Berlian Motors in Indonesia on 18 September 2014 at the 22nd Indonesia International Motor Show, where it was imported from Japan. It was sold in Indonesia until 2018.
The facelifted fifth generation Delica D:5 was spotted being camouflaged peeking its Dynamic Shield front fascia design based from the Mitsubishi Outlander and Xpander. It was revealed on 21 November 2018 having a 10.1" infotainment system and e-Assist. The facelifted Delica D:5 debuted to the public at the 2019 Tokyo Auto Salon, and was released in Japan on 15 February 2019.
Other models using the nameEdit
Mitsubishi Delica Truck/Van/Cargo (rebadged Mazda Bongo Truck/Van/Brawny)Edit
Between November 1999 and 2010, Mitsubishi Motors retailed a badge engineered version of the Mazda Bongo as the Delica Truck/Van (short wheelbase) and the Delica Cargo (extended wheelbase) in Japan, replacing the cargo version of the fourth generation Delica in that market.
Mitsubishi Delica D:3/Delica Van (rebadged Nissan NV200)Edit
In 2011, Mitsubishi Motors replaced Mazda Bongo-based models with a badge engineered Nissan NV200, sold as Delica D:3 (wagon models) and Delica Van (van models).
Mitsubishi Delica D:2 (rebadged Suzuki Solio)Edit
To complement the larger Delica D:5 minivan, a smaller Delica D:2 mini MPV appeared in March 2011. Equipped with a 1.2 L (1,242 cc) four-cylinder Suzuki K12B engine and a continuously variable transmission (CVT), the car is a rebadged Suzuki Solio provided under an original equipment manufacturer deal.
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- "【三菱 デリカ D:5 クリーンディーゼル 発表】ガソリン車プラス約30万円という価値", Carview, 26 December 2012
- "2019 Mitsubishi Delica Is A Minivan Crossover Based On The Outlander | Carscoops". Carscoops. 11 June 2018. Retrieved 22 September 2018.
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