The Borneo Safari needs no introduction to the world of 4×4 adventure, having established a reputation over the past 25 years as one of the world’s toughest 4X4 expeditions.
As Sabah’s premier event celebrates its Silver Jubilee this year, Mitsubishi Motors Malaysia, the official distributor of Mitsubishi vehicles here, is joining in the festivities by sending one of its all-new Triton 4X4 pick-up trucks into the fray.
The automaker is no stranger to adventures in East Malaysia. Pajero and even older Mitsubishi 4×4’s have been in the thick of Borneo’s 4×4 action since the Trans Borneo expeditions of the 1980s, which evolved into the Borneo Safari in 1991.
“MMM is glad to participate in the Borneo Safari event this year with the all-new Triton Adventure. Borneo Safari is one of Asia’s most gruelling off-road events and MMM is proud to say that the all-new Triton is set to conquer all terrain obstacles with its off-road driving capabilities,” said Chief Executive Officer of MMM, Mr. Yang Won-Chul.
The new Triton will be entered as a corporate vehicle, piloted by Borneo Safari veterans Paul Si from Sarawak and Lionel Yew from Selangor.
“We are proud to be entrusted by Mitsubishi with this mission, to take on the Borneo Safari in the all-new Triton, which will go in with the absolute minimum of modifications,” said Si, who took part in the 1992 and 2008 events, and has not missed a Safari since 2012.
“We want to show that the standard Triton, as it left the showroom floor, is capable of handling tough terrain,” he added.
The Borneo Safari is an extremely tough event, taking the participants through various terrain challenges over 8 days and 7 nights. It is a challenge for the vehicles as well as the participants too.
Even before crossing the start line, the Triton has already completed a long journey, starting out from Kuching, Sarawak early on October 17, passing through Miri, Brunei, Limbang and Lawas before arriving in the Sabah capital two days and 1,250 kilometres later.
“It performed flawlessly throughout the road drive, with ample power for overtaking and comfortable cruising. Soon, we will see how well it handles the rough stuff,” Si said.
The Borneo Safari will flag off at 9.30am from the Sabah Tourism Board building at Jalan Gaya, Kota Kinabalu. The convoy will then proceed to Penampang for the opening Prologue Special Stages.
Heavy traffic is expected as the event’s growing popularity over the years has increased the number of entries, from around 20 cars in the early years to 250 last year and around 300 this time around.
Over the next few days, the participants will split into several groups and proceed to various camp sites, including Kampung Sungi and Kg. Tingkolod before tackling the hardcore stretches in the Rundum and Lagud Seberang area in the southwest region of Sabah.
The convoys will then regroup in Tenom town before returning to Kota Kinabalu after 8 days on the trails.