• Mitsubishi Pajero Sport the vehicle of choice for new MMSA Brand Ambassador
  • Legendary 4x4 adventurer Francois Rossouw safe and comfortable in his new ride
  • Close to 2 million km under his belt
JOHANNESBURG. Renowned 4x4 specialist and well-known radio journalist Francois Rossouw took delivery of the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport for conquering the great outdoors on some new epic adventures.

Rossouw, who has been in the 4x4 world since 1975, has covered more than 1 950 000 km behind the wheel of 4x4 vehicles. Starting way back in 1975, this 4x4 guru – affectionately known by his Afrikaans nickname “die 4x4 ou” (the 4x4 guy) – had his first taste of a Mitsubishi 4x4 vehicle three decades ago when he drove a variety of Colt bakkies from 1990 to 1994 as dedicated leader vehicles on off-road expeditions all over Africa.

“I am happy to be behind the wheel of a Mitsubishi, especially the Pajero Sport. I have driven all versions through the years as I also run my own 4x4 dealership in Alberton, and it is just an amazingly well-designed, safe and reliable off-roader,” he said this week shortly before departing on yet another recce for a new 4x4 experience.

“As I have been doing for many years, I add at least one new trip to my arsenal every year. The latest is a 4x4 route in the Songimvelo Nature Reserve in Mpumalanga, which will open in November. The Pajero will be leading the way!”

Francois started his life as a 4x4 guide back in the 70s when he ran his 4x4 dealership and took customers on a 4x4 excursion every month to show his customers what their vehicles were capable of. “I’ll be doing the same with the Pajero, so please come along!”

Part of his experience as one of the most influential four-wheel-drive experts on the African continent was the SA All-wheel Drive Club he founded in 1975, he was a national 4x4 Challenge champion in 1990, ’91 and ’92 and has been writing for various magazines for years. “As radio journalist, I have been doing a regular Wednesday programme “My Bakkie en Ek” for a Namibian radio station (Kanaal Sewe) and the Saturday morning 4x4 programme on the RSG station Reis Sonder Grense – both for more than 25 years. “My very first 4x4 expedition was 1975 and lately I am doing regular trips for RSG listeners where we have our own club, not surprisingly called RSG 4x4 Sport,” he recalls.

As confirmation that Francois is the right man for the job – he has accompanied more than 28 000 people in more than 11 000 vehicles on 4x4 excursions all over South Africa, Southern Africa, and a variety of other regions higher up in Africa.

“So far I have travelled over 1 950 000 km in 4x4 vehicles.”

Francois has covered so much ground that he finds it a challenge to recall the best trips. “Every trip is special and, in many cases, better than the previous. I use some of my 60 different 4x4 routes in South Africa, and this year we will add trip number 61 in Mpumalanga, which will be my first official expedition as guide in the new Mitsubishi Pajero Sport.”

After so many kilometres in basically every 4x4 every available in South Africa, Francois says his experience with customers joining him on many of his excursions in a variety of Mitsubishi vehicles have always covered it “without issues”.

“The Mitsubishis we’ve had and the ones I drove, always offered extreme comfort and reliability, and I am confident the new Pajero will be exactly the same.”

The first expedition planned after Lockdown will hopefully be in September to the desert dunes at Goerapan, followed by one to Moolmanshoek, a West Coast adventure, one in Transkei, St Lucia, Sodwana/Kosi Bay and in November to Golden Gate and the Qua Qua Park offering a massive quantity of animals. Our trip in the Songimvelo Reserve on the Eswatini border (Swaziland) is also on the cards.

Nic Campbell, General Manager of Mitsubishi Motors South Africa, said an adventurer with the experience of someone like Francois Rossouw is an obvious choice for the Mitsubishi Pajero.

“Francois chose the Pajero based on his experience with our brand over the decades as well as many of his clients joining him on local excursions. He said the deciding factor was safety and reliability – two outstanding features of the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport.”

  • The Pajero Sport driven by Francois is the 2.4 MIVEC 4x4 A/T, powered by the renowned 2.4-litre MIVEC DOHC Intercooled Turbo Diesel engine with common rail direct injection offering 133 kW and 430 Nm.

    The vehicle is equipped with the latest version of Mitsubishi Motors’ 8-speed automatic transmission coupled to the Super-Select II 4WD System, offering four different drive modes. The 4H drive mode distributes torque in a 40:60 ratio between the front and rear wheels via a Torsen limited-slip device for safer on-road driving in slippery conditions including gravel and wet roads; 4HLc (4WD High Range with CD locked) distributes torque equally between the front and rear wheels for improved traction on sand, dirt and snow; the 4LLc (4WD Low Range with CD locked) provides greater torque for extreme off-road conditions.

    The Pajero Sport 2.4 MIVEC 4x4 A/T retails for R639 995.