The Truth About Cars » Mitsubishi Montero http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. Thu, 04 Dec 2014 19:13:59 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0.1 The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars no The Truth About Cars editors@ttac.com editors@ttac.com (The Truth About Cars) 2006-2009 The Truth About Cars The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars » Mitsubishi Montero http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/wp-content/themes/ttac-theme/images/logo.gif http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com New or Used: Can One Car Last Through Five Kids? http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/04/new-or-used-can-one-car-last-through-five-kids/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/04/new-or-used-can-one-car-last-through-five-kids/#comments Fri, 18 Apr 2014 22:58:29 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=804162 I currently have three cars and I feel a hankering to buy a fourth. My wife has bought into the idea, now it’s just a matter of what to get. The particulars: – Five kids between the ages of 5 and 15… – Active duty military with seven (7!) moves since 2005 with a couple […]

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brady1

I currently have three cars and I feel a hankering to buy a fourth. My wife has bought into the idea, now it’s just a matter of what to get.

The particulars:

– Five kids between the ages of 5 and 15…

– Active duty military with seven (7!) moves since 2005 with a couple more likely over the next several years
– Three current cars are all paid for
– Commute is 35 highway miles each way and will be that way for at least the next 18 months and maybe longer
– Car #1 – 2006 Honda Odyssey with ~120,000 miles (bought new)
– Car #2 – 2007 Honda Accord 5 speed with ~83,000 miles (bought used)
– Car #3 – 1969 Jeepster Commando that’s been in my family since 1973.

Our oldest turns 16 in a few months and we’d like to get a vehicle that the kids can all drive over the next 13 years. Note that I said ‘a’ vehicle as we keep our cars a long time and don’t intend on getting another car for the kids to share. One and done.

What should that fourth vehicle be? I see really only two paths that make sense.

First option: Get a car that pushes 40+mpg to ease the pain at the pump my commute causes. Possible vehicle: my Dad is selling his 2011 Jetta TDI 5 speed wagon this fall and I have dibs, if I so choose. This option would mean that the kids would drive the Accord, which we’re fine with.

Second option: Get something that can double as the kids’ car and that we can use to tow the Commando on our future moves. This means I would keep commuting in my Accord, which is also fine. Budget is about $7K max and we’ll pay cash.

We are leaning strongly towards getting a third gen 4Runner (’96-’01) with a V6, 4×4 and tow package as the min requirements. Manual is highly desired but not required. There are several for sale where we live (north of LA) and examples with 150-175k miles can be found for around $5k, although most are automatics. Reviews and 4Runner forums seem to portend good news regarding longevity with relatively straight forward maintenance required. My fear? My vehicle aperture isn’t nearly wide enough and that there are lots of other good options out there that we’re not considering. Whatever the fourth vehicle ends up being, there isn’t a requirement that it be able to carry all seven of us.

I leave it in your capable hands. What does your magic 8 ball say? (It better not say to buy a Panther, ’cause it ain’t happening!)

Cheers,

Steve Says

I like your first option the best.

If your kids learn how to drive a stick (good move there!), they will eventually get a far better vehicle in the marketplace as they get older and more independent.

As a car dealer circa 2014, it amazes me how so few people know how to drive a stick these days. When it comes to older vehicles, I find that sticks will go for about 15% to 35% cheaper than their automatic counterparts with a few notable exceptions

I still buy a lot of em’ for retail, and although they sit at my lot for longer periods of time, they also attract customers who are far more conscientious about maintenance and upkeep. This helps me when it comes to financing these rides. Since a car that is well kept tends to have fewer issues.

As for option 2, yes, the Toyota 4Runner has an excellent long-term reliability record. But let me throw in an alternative that will cost thousands less and have a solid reliability record as well.

I would consider a Mitsubishi Montero  from the early 2000’s. If you buy one with the 3.5 Liter, they are virtually bulletproof, and the kids will benefit from a higher seating position.  The gas mileage will remain abysmal. But in the real world the 3.5 Liter in the Montero will get you a vehicle with about half the miles of the 4Runner for the same price, and the reliability of that particular powertrain is solid (<—click).

Maintenance history is critically important when buying older SUV’s because a lot of them are neglected and inevitably hot-potatoed in the used car market . So get it independently inspected and only opt for ones that have a strong maintenance regimen. Otherwise you will also be buying someone else’s problems.

Good luck! Oh, and if you decide to not buy an older SUV, I have a beige on beige Toyota Solara with a V6, no CD player, and a hand shaker in between the front seats. I’m thinking about naming it, “The Rolling Leper” in honor if it more or less being an unsellable car.

If you don’t have to tow, go find the west coast version of a low-spec Solara. In a non-rust climate like central California, I think a car like that would probably be the optimal fit.

All the best.

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Junkyard Find: 1988 Dodge Raider http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/12/junkyard-find-1988-dodge-raider/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/12/junkyard-find-1988-dodge-raider/#comments Tue, 17 Dec 2013 14:00:28 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=682026 So, out of the entire series of Junkyard Finds, which goes back three years and includes more than 600 posts, which vehicle has attracted the most readers? Strangely, it’s this 1987 Dodge Raider, which I shot in a Denver yard about a year ago. Why? Perhaps fans of the rebadged Mitsubishi Pajero are especially obsessed […]

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18 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinSo, out of the entire series of Junkyard Finds, which goes back three years and includes more than 600 posts, which vehicle has attracted the most readers? Strangely, it’s this 1987 Dodge Raider, which I shot in a Denver yard about a year ago. Why? Perhaps fans of the rebadged Mitsubishi Pajero are especially obsessed devoted, to a degree that the rest of us (I’m sure Raider/Montero/Pajero fans have a derisive nickname for us) will never understand. Anyway, here is exactly the second Raider I’ve seen in a wrecking yard since the start of this series; I found this little gold devil during my visit to the San Francisco Bay Area last week.
02 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinJust 136,000 miles on the clock, but I’m sure they were manly miles.
09 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinI don’t recall ever seeing Ram emblems on a Raider before. Could these have been lifted from a Dodge Ram 50 aka Mitsubishi Mighty Max?
08 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinMarques in the Chrysler family got pretty hard to follow by the late 1980s, what with all the DNA from AMC, Renault, Mitsubishi, Simca, and assorted second cousins of those badges coursing through the company’s veins at this point. The Raider makes for some good automotive trivia questions, though not quite as weird as questions related to early 1970s captive imports or the greatest Brazilian Chrysler of all time.
01 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinI don’t recall hearing about the lawsuits that must have led to these warning labels. Anybody know this story?
14 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinThe coolest truck in the Napa High School parking lot!

01 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 02 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 03 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 04 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 05 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 06 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 07 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 08 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 09 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 10 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 11 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 12 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 13 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 14 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 15 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 16 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 17 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 18 - 1988 Dodge Raider Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin

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What the Hell, the Japanese Characters Fit the Switch Just Fine! http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/12/what-the-hell-the-japanese-characters-fit-the-switch-just-fine/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/12/what-the-hell-the-japanese-characters-fit-the-switch-just-fine/#comments Mon, 03 Dec 2012 14:00:42 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=468898 When the Mitsubishi Pajero was brought to these shores, as the Mitsubishi Montero and the Dodge Raider, the bosses at Mitsubishi figured they’d just move the steering wheel to the other side and translate the text on all the controls from Japanese to English, end of story. As I learned while working for a localization […]

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When the Mitsubishi Pajero was brought to these shores, as the Mitsubishi Montero and the Dodge Raider, the bosses at Mitsubishi figured they’d just move the steering wheel to the other side and translate the text on all the controls from Japanese to English, end of story. As I learned while working for a localization company a few years back, this job is not always as simple as it looks.
These days, there’s no way focus groups and multiple layers of PowerPoint-enhanced bureaucracy would ever let hyphenated text get by on a vehicle’s instrument panel, but back in 1980s Japan— for example, on the “SECU-RITY” indicator light on a 1987 Nissan Maxima— engineers were in charge. The message gets across? Fine, we’re done!
As a technical writer, which was my trade for more than a decade prior to getting into this here automotive-journalism racket, I had some of my stuff translated into other languages every once in a while. Going from English into, say, German or French, your text bloats like crazy and you have a hell of a time shrinking your diagrams to make everything fit on your pages. Going from English into a language that uses ideographic characters (e.g., Chinese or Japanese), you find that your stuff now takes up half the space. My guess is that the original tailgate-lock switch on JDM Pajeros had a pair of kanji characters, Mitsubishi paid a few yen to Hideki’s Cut-Rate Localization Service and Drain Opening Company to provide English versions, and it was all good. Seeing this sort of thing is refreshing these days, because focus groups lead to fun-expunged Corollas.

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Junkyard Find: 1987 Dodge Raider http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/12/junkyard-find-1987-dodge-raider/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/12/junkyard-find-1987-dodge-raider/#comments Sun, 02 Dec 2012 14:00:13 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=468731 Remember the Raider? No, you don’t. Nobody remembers the Raider, because this one that I found yesterday at a self-service wrecking yard near Denver was the only Raider Dodge ever sold. All right, Chrysler probably moved a few more rebadged first-gen Mitsubishi Monteros out of the showrooms, but it’s hard to think of an example […]

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Remember the Raider? No, you don’t. Nobody remembers the Raider, because this one that I found yesterday at a self-service wrecking yard near Denver was the only Raider Dodge ever sold.
All right, Chrysler probably moved a few more rebadged first-gen Mitsubishi Monteros out of the showrooms, but it’s hard to think of an example of Japan/Detroit badge engineering that vanished into more complete obscurity than this one. Maybe the Toyota Cavalier comes close, but supposedly there are (dozens of) avid fans of the Cavalier in Japan.
Anecdotal evidence (from everyone I’ve ever known who has owned or worked on a Montero) suggests that these trucks weren’t quite as reliable as, say, Blazers and Broncos. In fact, the expletive-heavy anecdotes that I’ve heard about the first-gen Montero suggest that the world would be a better place if they’d all been driven directly from the assembly line into the jaws of The Crusher. Members of the Pajero Jihad, feel free to tell us about your 900,000-trouble-free-mile Raiders.
This truck was powered by the 2.6 liter Astron engine, the same one used in the Plymouth Arrow and (in turbocharged form) the Mitsubishi Starion.
My shot of the odometer didn’t come out, but this truck’s life ended with about 175,000 miles on the clock.
Such a macho name!
It seemed appropriate that F-16s from nearby Buckley AFB were screaming low overhead as I contemplated the warlike name of this piece of automotive history.

14 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 01 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 02 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 03 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 04 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 05 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 06 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 07 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 08 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 09 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 10 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 11 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 12 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 13 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Murilee Martin 14 - 1987 Dodge Raider Down On The Junkyard - Picture Courtesy of Chrysler Zemanta Related Posts Thumbnail

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