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Mitsubishi Montero



  • mp19fanmp19fan Posts: 102
    I paid $35,000 plus tax/lic. for LTD w/ rear air, running board and rear spoiler (which was listed at $999 and $399 on the window), plus the sunroof wind deflector. Also got the 4.9% for 60 months.

    BTW, I got my Monty back yesterday after replacing the dricer's side mirror, tightening the running boards, and installing the sunroof wind deflector. Mirror doesn't look to be much better (still some distortion, maybe designed that way for wider FOV). Sunroof deflector is HUGE! Nearly covers half of the sunroof. Not sure this is a good thing. --Jimmy
  • karno1karno1 Posts: 33
    Hmm....thats why I'm not too keen on getting the wind deflector....takes up half of that huge sunroof. If its wind noise you are worried about, simply roll down one of the rear windows to increase air flow, thus lessening the wind noise. As you know, when air enters, it usually requires an outlet to pass thru. Why did your running boards require tightening?

    Is it hard to get approved for this 4.9% financing? Don't know about you guys, but I sure do have bills,ie.: mortgage, couple of credit cards...etc. any advice?
  • mp19fanmp19fan Posts: 102
    WRT the wind deflector: it's not the wind buffeting that annoyed me, so rolling down a window doesn't help. It has nothing to do with the air pressure inside the cabin. It's just the design of the pop-up metal deflector. If you look at it, it's quite large, vertical, and has oval cutouts in it. I'm assuming that because of the massive sunroof, there were some design compromises in that piece. Even around town you can really notice the wind noise as it hits the metal deflector. Do I still enjoy the XL sunroof? You bet.

    As for the 4.9%, I suppose all you could do is ask them to run a credit check. I have a mortgage, credit card debt, etc. as well. But I believe as long as you don't have any 60-90-120 day delinquencies in your credit record, too much outstanding debt relative to your income, or any judgements against you, I think you should be approved.
  • karno1karno1 Posts: 33
    Thanks Mp19fan!

    I'm gonna try out the monty w/o the deflector, and see how it goes. if I can tollerate the wind noise, then great!, if not, I sure would hate to see that huge sunroof cut down to half w/ that visor taking up most of the space.
  • brillmtbbrillmtb Posts: 543
    I would not have picked the MDX #1. It truely is not an off road vehicle to any degree. My montero sales rep told me he has had several people who returned them and bought Montero's after they found out how poorly it does off road.
  • I think there should be two classifications of SUV's. How about "Off Road/On Road" SUVs for the Montes, Land Cruisers, etc. and "On Road Only" SUVs for the Acura MDXs, Oldsmobile Bravada. What do you think? To me a SUV is to get off road and I do. Putting the Monte in the same class a MDX is not right. If you want a luxiary AWD mini-van get a MDX.
  • karno1karno1 Posts: 33
    I don't think its that easy to return a $40k vehicle. After all, its not like one is returning a toy at toys r' us. No offense, I'm a true Monty fan here. Yet, you can't always believe what a sales man tells ya. Those that did return the MDX's, had to have taken a loss when giving it back. Granted, they did make a better decision the second time around when going for the Monty. Can't wait to get mine!
  • ehollisehollis Posts: 14
    According to dealer, qualifications for 4.9 are as follows:

    credit score 700 or above
    more than 4 trade lines (credit accounts)
    more than 3 yrs credit history
    Less than 8 credit inquiries in the past 6 months.

    Gonna put in another plug for I just read their book "Car Buyers and leasers negotiating bible" A must read for anyone getting a Mitsu Montero.

    Also, pls go to Good advice. (In fact it was there that I learned about

    Another question: Does anyone have a problem with the rear door on the mitsu? Mine squeaks real bad when I open, and it doesn't seem to close solidly, although the door open indicator is not on. Just doesn't "feel" right.
  • karno1karno1 Posts: 33
    Thanks for the tips Ehollis!

    What if one were to score slighty shy of 700 points, but rather like 655.....would they be approved, or would they simply be denied the 4.9% rate?
  • ehollisehollis Posts: 14
    I'm not sure, however, before you let the mitsu dealer check, do it yourself at for 7.95, you can get a comprehensive credit rating from Equifax, along with your credit score. If you just want your score, that's only 3.95. Important: this will not count as an inquiry, and if you let the mitsu dealer do it, it will count. (If you let 8 mitsu dealers check, you're automatically disqualified from the loan.) Not good.

    Then I would ask the dealer what they could do for you, if your credit rating was on the borderline. Above all, don't let anyone check until you're ready to buy. (It's against the law for them to run a credit check on you w/out your knowledge, but after you give them a deposit, they can.)

    I paid cash, so I'm not an expert on this loan, but I did investigate it as an option.

    Anyone have the rear door problem I mentioned in a previous post?
  • brillmtbbrillmtb Posts: 543
    The rep I spoke with is as honest as they get. The area I live in is paradise for hunter-fisher types so it does not suprise me if the story was true. When I looked at the MDX the FIRST thing I noticed is that the approach angle and the way the bottom of the vehicle is designed was going to hamper its off road ability. Then the off road tests came in stating the rear end felt too light at speeds and that there was problems with grounding out the front end.

    Its probably a great on road SUV though.

    Interesting that the milage the longer term reports are getting for combined on/off, etc are only 1 mpg than the Montero. I dont understand this given that the MDX is rated at something like 24mph on the highway.
  • brillmtbbrillmtb Posts: 543
    Agree with the need to break these tests up more. Also, consumers would benefit by a larger review that educates them as to why SUV's are placed into different groups. They could then quickly par down the choices based on what they want thier SUV to be able to do.

    Just look at how much confusion the Sequoia has presented. Some think the VSC system is great and 4wd hated it off it depends on what you are going to do with your SUV.

    I took my Montero through the hoops at Tahoe the other week. Yes, you can spin out in the ice and this would be harder to do in the Sequoia but where people get into real trouble is driving too fast on ice and then trying to make a corner. No VSC system is going to prevent you from going off the road.

    I personally like less electronics and more mechanical functions to a degree, less car controlling driver input and more driver controlling SUV. Thats basically what 4wd mag said in so many words.
  • ken131ken131 Posts: 20
    Does anyone notice that when backing up slowly while turning (pulling out of a garage for example)or when going forward and turning slowly (into a parking space, for example) when the monte is in 4llc and/or 4wd that it is not too smooth and makes sort of a rumble? what is the reason for this? the dealer told me that it is just a function of the car being in 4wd /4llc mode. Any comments or info would be appreciated. This is my first 4wd vehicle, so maybe this is just standard on these types of vehicles. It does not happen when I am in regular 2wd mode.
  • dskidski Posts: 414
    AAA rated the 9-5 Best in Class as well. Nice to see that the Saab is still getting high marks after 3 years of production.

  • mp19fanmp19fan Posts: 102
    Somebody correct me if I'm way off base here, but I believe that when 4WD is in part time mode (which I believe is the case in 4LLC), the differentials are locked. When you take a turn, the inside wheel is actually travelling slower than the outside wheel, which is what the differential is designed to compensate for. So when the center diff. is locked, you'd get the noise and a "hopping" sensation from the front tires because both are moving at the same revolutions.

    That's why it is recommended that in 4WD mode w/ diffs. locked, it should only be used in slippery stuff. This is what my Jeep dealer told me, but the problem is that my Jeep was doing this even in full-time 4WD, which doesn't lock the center diff. But apparently the svc. tech. knew so little about 4WDs that he didn;t know the difference between part-time and full-time 4WD. --Jimmy
  • ken131ken131 Posts: 20
    Does anyone notice that when backing up slowly while turning (pulling out of a parking space for example)or when going forward and turning slowly (pulling into a parking space, for example)when the monte is in 4hlc and/or 4wd that it is not too smooth and makes sort of a rumble? what is the reason for this? the dealer told me that it is just a function of the car being in 4wd /4hlc mode. Any comments or info would be appreciated. This is my first 4wd vehicle, so maybe this is just standard on these types of vehicles. It does not happen when I am in regular 2wd mode.
    Thanks for any help.
  • pro212pro212 Posts: 44
    Hi All,
    I had agood deal working on a former lease car at my dealer with 12,000 miles, Beige, all seemed perfect except a small burn mark and some soil on the cloth seats @$24500. I passed because: 1)the car felt rolling and lumbering on the highway and handling reminded me of an old Buick or my old 1988 Isuzu Trooper (which I grew to dislike) 2) not full time 4wd or AWD 3)gas mileage seems pretty bad considering the other unibody SUVs are in the mid -high 20's on the highway (why is the Monte so low @approx 16combined? tires, torque, auto trans?)4)fit and finish can't compare to Toyota, BMW, Honda, or even Hyundai Sante Fe 5) worried about reliability specifically brakes (the one I tested was making squeeling noises in reverse) and auto transmission which I heard anecdotal reports from "sister dealers, (eg dealerships selling both Mitsu, Toyota and other makes )as problematic (maybe untrue/unfair?? but seemed to make sense with stress in lugging around town in stop and go such a heavy underpowered SUV) Yet, the side airbags, the room, the design was very nice and seemed to be a well made car. What did I buy? I decided that mileage, excellent handling, AWD/ABS/traction control, and fit/finish were more important to me than rock hopping, size and side bags. I test drove a Hyundai Santa Fe LX 4wd with ABS/traction control which was a very nice, well handling, well made and extremely stabile ride fully loaded (with leather)@$23,000. So I think you are correct about needing to classify SUVs differently. If you want true off road ability and size, you're decision tree runs to Monte at a good price for what you get (though depreciation must be very high after the first year considering the deal I got on the 2001 XLS with 12000 miles @ 7000 off MSRP). On the other hand, if you don't need to rock hop or tow or need 6-7 passenger size, the Hyundai Santa Fe was very impressive on a variety of unpaved road and wet/icy, tight curve situations (and fit and finish reminded me of my BMW!). The Sante Fe to me was much better riding and handling than the Toyota/Honda/Mazda/Ford competitors. Tell me if I made a mistake when I passed up the used 2001 Monte XLS @$24,500!!!
  • sgbassinsgbassin Posts: 22
    I'm seriously looking at the montero limited but concerned about the strain on the engine while on the highway. I read that the SUV is under powered. boat weighs close to 3500lbs,
    Anyone with comments?
  • brillmtbbrillmtb Posts: 543
    I was interested in your comments about the Sante Fe. A relative is considering this SUV because they want an inexpensive and smaller SUV.

    I would disagree on the fit/finish comment compared to all the vehicles I drove.

    Definitely look at the combined mileage in the longer term reports now rolling out on the new SUV. You will find that the Monte stays in the 17 mpg range. I get close to 20 on the freeway at legal speeds, never get below 15.

    It is interesting that some of the quoted mileages on the MDX and Sequoia are substantially higher than what the owners are reporting as well as the testers. Most of the Seq owners are stating 11mpg, very upset and rightfully asking what gives? The last long term report on the MDX quoted combined mileage of 18mpg. This is only 1 mpg above the Montero yet the MDX claims 24 highway.

    As far as drive ride quality you are really feeling the difference between heavy and lighter SUV's. Some people sense the weight of the vehicle and dont like it. Under even fast pased driving on or off road, mud, snow, ice, rain I have had no problems with my Montero. Under normal driving it is one of the best riding SUV's out there. Under very fast driving.....well...I get out my Acura GSR....why would I want to drive my Montero that fast?
  • brillmtbbrillmtb Posts: 543
    I assume you are not driving the Monte in 4LLC on dry pavement....that would give you tire noises.

    But to answer you question, NO.
  • brillmtbbrillmtb Posts: 543
    Towing a 3500lb boat should be no problem. You wont be able to keep up with the American V8's but you should be able to tow at safe highway speeds. I plan on getting a trailer that will be just a little more weight and certainly have a frontal cross section that will catch a lot more wind. The boat should cut through the air.

    We all believe the Monte is underpowered, certainly for towing, but generally bought this SUV because the scorecard is so strong in other areas. If the reliability comes in strong then in retrospect it will be one of the best if not the best 4wd/SUV made because of the features at this price.
  • pro212pro212 Posts: 44
    Thanks for your thoughful comments. Added to my choice dillema was that I've been using a 2000 Nissan Xterra SE 5sp for the last 10 months in my work (emergency rescue) which involves some off-road/undeveloped dirt road/and flooded road use, though also lots of highway miles. At $25,500 loaded (leather not available) the Xterra 5speed has been a very solid, rugged vehicle with excellent fit/finish, no repair problems at all and built tough. So, why did I not buy an Xterra for myself? On long highway trips (8-12 hrs day) it gets tiring, with the Xterra you feel most bumps on the road and hear some constant wind/engine noise. You know you're in a truck not a car!! Mileage is so-so at about 17-18 combined. So at first I looked at the Monte hoping for a blend of off-road ability and comfort, but the Monte didn't feel as tight or well handling as the Xterra even through the Xterra is build on a truck frame rather than the Monte unibody platform. I still don't get why this is so??? I'm used to running medium-heavy SUVs (I've owned a Trooper in the past and the Xterra is not that light) but it felt sloppy and lumbering, perhaps cause it was used rather than new.

    I can tell your family member who's interested that the Santa Fe is very smooth and well handling on the road, feels incredibly stabile and well-balanced on tight corners (read last month's Truckin' mag review during SUV of year ratings; Santa Fe got the best bang for the buck award). Back to the Monte, I feel I should have been more impressed overall but sometimes the whole "Gestalt" doesn't equal the sum of the parts. "Part-wise", the Monte wins hands down over the Sante Fe (comparing similar prices with 23K for Santa Fe new and my deal of 24.5 for 2001 XLS used with 12K miles) with size, unibody construction, standard side bags, standard ABS, skid plates, ruggedness, etc. Yet for me to buy the Monte XLS, it probably had to have 1) better handling, or 2)better mileage (Santa FeLX is 19city/23 highway carrying 3752 lbs; perhaps I was mislead with the Monte figuers but the dealer himself was getting 16-17 combined)or 3)better power (than the Xterra or Sante Fe but acceleration and power across the three seems similar) or4)better anticipated or proven reliability (I guess I was turned off by dealer anecdotal stories of past and present auto transmission or brake problems).

    All in all, I think if you need a true off-road vehicle, its hard to beat the Xterra SE 5 speed (5 passenger) at its price (25.5K) or for a 7 seater, the Monte XLS at its price (31K). But if you won't go "true off road" and instead go on unpaved, poor quality or slippery roads with highway and city miles, the Santa Fe's good mileage, good handling and good traction/ground clearance with modern (AWD,shiftronic and ABS/traction control) technology @$23,000 loaded is hard to beat. Its a good year for SUVs because there are so many choices out there. By the way, was the $24,500 price I got on the 2001 Monte XLS a great price or is depreciation expected to be this high?? With Monte reliability proving itself over the next year or two and I might come back to Mitsu or in any case will let you all know if my decision pans out. Best of luck and have fun in your Monteros!
  • rascalrascal Posts: 26
    With the massive quality problems of Hyundais over the years...I would not use a Santa Fe for a boat offense to anyone who purchased one of these but they are a great car the first 10k miles, after that...ugh...

  • brillmtbbrillmtb Posts: 543
    As far as your concern about reliability. The Montero is well proven in Africa and Austrailia. People feel less comfortable with it over here because it is hard to speak with owners in those countries.

    In Austrailia they picked the 2001 over the Landcruiser this year. That's my personal gold standard.
  • cct1cct1 Posts: 221
    From what I've read about towing, you need to take the ratings given by the manufacterer with a grain of salt--the maximum towing capacity is just that--and should only be used for short distances. If you are going to do ALOT of towing, you should only tow 75 percent of the maximum--about 3700 lbs. You will be cutting it close at 3500 lbs, but you should be all right. If you aren't going to do alot of towing, the Monte will be just fine. If you are going to be doing a substantial amount of towing, or there is a chance that you may be towing something heavier, you may want to consider something else.

    For what it's worth, I was thinking of getting a 24 foot boat--it wasn't until I decided to hold off for 5 years (until the kids are a little older) that I decided to get the Monte, otherwise I would have gotten something with a bigger engine. I will do some lighter towing (probably gonna get a fishing boat, which I wouldn't think twice about towing with the Monte.).

    With the exception of the HP issue, I absolutely love this vehicle, and don't want to steer you away from it.....
  • Hi all. Been away a couple of weeks, during which time I had the chance to rent a 2001 XLS from Enterprise to tool around Florida. A few observations: (1) the driver's side mirror is distorted just like on my Ltd., so I can only assume that this is just the way the mirrors are (2) as somebody mentioned some posts back, when the truck was in 4WD mode and the wheel was all the way over, the truck had a weird motion, which I had not noticed in my Ltd.; and (3) I like my Ltd. a whole lot more than the XLS -- definitely worth the extra dough.

    As for gas mileage, how the heck are you guys getting up around 20 mpg? I've got less than 700 miles on my Ltd., but I've been averaging around 11-12 mpg. Granted, that's all on Chicago streets with a lot of stop-and-go driving, and my wife isn't exactly light on the accelerator. Still, 8-9 mpg difference seems to be a lot. Did your mileage improve after the first 1000 or so miles?
  • rick130rick130 Posts: 6
    I've been a long time fan of the Mote, even more so now with the new '01. Always thought it would "someday" before I actually got one. Well, an accident changed all that quickly. After totaling our '94 Toyota Previa mini-van, my wife and I spent the weekend test driving mini-vans (yaawwwn). We were not at all excited about purchasing another one. With our kids almost at the ages where we could consider a more exciting 5 passenger sedan or SUB, we really didn't want to commit to 5 years with a new van, and forget about a three or more year old used one--have you smelled the inside of those things (even after detailing) after they've raised a family?

    We were about to succumb to the new Nissan Quest when we decided to drive the Mote, just to get it out of systems. It was everything we were afraid it would be--solid, smooth, and secure. We decided then and there it was what we wanted. We do have some questions as to the safety of the third row in crashes. Is there any crash data that indicates the back of the Mote is any better/worse than the typical mini-van? Fortunately we wouldn't use the third row very often. We have a blended family of four kids (ages 8-14), so we don't have all four, all the time. In fact the 14 year old is beginning to want to do things on her own away from the rest of us (yeeessss!!).

    Lastly, the dealer has a few program '01 XLS models with 16-22K miles for $25,900 to 27,900 (all similarly equipped with no extras). My question is with the 4.9% financing available on the new vehicles is it worth considering the used Montes at say, $24,500 vs. maybe $29,500 for the brand new one? I've seen lots of prices stated on the Limiteds here, but not much regarding the XLS. What is a reasonable price to expect to pay on a new XLS that invoices at $31,300? Any help or experiences other recent buyers can provide would be greatly appreciated.
  • What octane gasoline are you using? I think most people posting mileage are using the 91-92 octane; that may make a difference. After my last tank my average is closer to 18 MPG with a 2001 full size Monte Ltd.s, mostly road miles.
  • Have you been to this site on towing? It looks like a pretty objective test on Montes and other SUV's.

  • Claybuster, so far I've used nothing but the highest grade of Mobil, which I think is 93. I have a feeling that my low gas mileage is more a function of the type of driving that we do (all in the city) and the low miles on the vehicle. Does climate make a difference in mpg? If so, then the lower temperatures in Chicago during the winter might be part of the problem. I'll find out about highway mileage later in the spring when we make the annual trek to the Upper Peninsula. I'm just hoping to get the EPA highway mpg rating (19, I think) and will be pleasantly surprised with anything more. All things considered, I'm glad that I've got a V-6 in the truck: enough torque to pull my boat, plenty of power for hauling kids around town, and probably better gas mileage than a V-8 would get.
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