The iconic Pajero is now a hall of famer

The Mitsubishi Pajero's production may have already come to an end in 2021, but the iconic model continues to be celebrated at the Land of the Rising Sun.

This year, Mitsubishi Motors Corporation has announced the first-generation Pajero (otherwise known as the Pajero "box type" in PH) is now recognized by the Japan Automotive Hall of Fame as one of its Historic Cars.

Mitsubishi Pajero Boxtype joins Japan Automotive Hall of Fame image

The Pajero was selected due to its superb contributions to Japanese automotive history. Back when it was launched in 1982, the Pajero combined excellent off-road capabilities with the comfort and ease of use of a passenger car. This established the Pajero as one of the pioneers in the then-growing segment of Sport Utility Vehicles or SUVs.

In the world of motorsports, the first-generation Pajero also claimed the first overall victory for a Japanese vehicle when it competed in the Dakar Rally back in 1985. Mitsubishi would then claim 11 more victories, including seven straight wins in the world's toughest rally raid using the newer evolutions of the Pajero.

Mitsubishi Pajero Boxtype joins Japan Automotive Hall of Fame image

Along with Mitsubishi's participation in the WRC with the Lancer Evolution, the Pajero's dominance in the Dakar Rally gave Mitsubishi a platform to improve its product lineup, including all-wheel control systems as well as its durability and reliability technologies that make Mitsubishi Motors vehicles special.

Today, models like the all-new Triton and the Pajero Sport (aka Montero Sport) are being offered by the Japanese manufacturer as recreational vehicles with excellent 4WD capabilities, but the Pajero will always be the OG for Mitsubishi.