If you think that the Philippines is the only country that still makes the L300, you'd be surprised. Indonesia still has them, and so does Taiwan, the latter just unveiling yet another heavy update on the workhorse.
Their “new” L300, called the Delica over there, is based on the L300 Exceed we got in the late '90s, which you might also know as the Delicas brought in here as Subic or Cagayan imports. While the platform used on that particular generation of L300/Delica dates way back in 1986, Mitsubishi Motors Taiwan actually "tried" to make it bang up to date.
First off is its front end which now looks nothing like the model from the mid-'80s. It now has dual-stacked headlights and even the Dynamic Shield nose mimicking all modern Mitsubishis today.
The rest of the body, on the other hand, is still the same as before. The doors, quarter panel, and tailgate are still the ones found from the 1986 model. The tailgate does get some extra lights to add a bit of a modern touch.
Inside is a mix of old and new. For instance, the instrument cluster now has a digital display in the center, and the door panels have been freshened up a bit. Gone is the twist-to-release parking brake, replaced by a more conventional hand brake. However, don't count on it having a touchscreen or even Bluetooth for that matter. Although you'd be pleasantly surprised to know that it now comes with steering wheel mounted audio controls and even cruise control.
The surprises don't stop there as it's also fitted with modern safety features too. This goes beyond the usual airbags and anti-lock brakes. This van also comes equipped with stability control, traction control, roll stability control, hill start assist, ISOFIX seats, and tire pressure monitoring. Opt for the top-spec variant and it adds blind-spot warning and even rear cross-traffic alert. As far as safety equipment goes, the Taiwan-spec Delica packs a lot of them.
On to the engine and it uses the (very) familiar 4G69 petrol block. If that sounds familiar, that's because it's the one found in Mitsubishi models such as the Galant 240M, the first-generation Outlander, and Grandis (remember those?). It's detuned for the Delica as it makes 133 PS and 200 Nm of torque. Transmission options include a six-speed manual or a five-speed automatic.
It will only be sold in Taiwan, so don't expect to see this in our showrooms any time soon. However, it is rather amusing that Mitsubishi is selling three different generations of the Delica worldwide, all at the same time. Those generations are the 1979 model (here and in Indonesia), the 1986 edition (in Taiwan), and the all-new version which debuted in Japan late last year.