Mitsubishi Motors Corp. will debut the new Pajero SUV at the 2006 Paris auto show later this month.

The new model is the fourth generation of the vehicle, some 2.5 million copies of which have been made since 1982, Mitsubishi says.

“The latest Pajero offers reliability forged in the crucible of grueling competition and use under the harshest conditions to be found on our planet,” Mitsubishi says in a statement. “It retains the all-round SUV specifications of its predecessor, as seen in its approach angle, ground clearance and other all-terrain performance parameters.”

A new 3.2L 4-cyl. diesel engine with common-rail direct-injection technology, or a 3.8L V-6 gasoline engine, powers the new Pajero for Europe

The Pajero has a 4-wheel-drive system using the auto maker’s Super Select 4WD-II transfer case in conjunction with optional active stability and traction control and a rear differential lock.

Inside, Mitsubishi offers a new 12-speaker, 860-watt Rockford Acoustic Design Premium Sound System.

The new Pajero will be built by Pajero Mfg. Co. Ltd., located in Japan’s Gifu prefecture. Shipments to Europe begin this month, with Japanese and Australian sales following shortly thereafter.

The SUV will be sold in 170 countries worldwide, including the Middle East and South America, the auto maker says.

Also on hand in Paris will be the next-generation Pajero Evolution, which will be entered in the 2007 Dakar Rally.