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Isuzu Trooper

Here is the new place to discuss the Isuzu
Trooper. Below are links to previous Isuzu Trooper

- Isuzu Trooper, Part IV

- Isuzu Trooper, Part III

- Isuzu Trooper, Part II

- Isuzu Trooper, Part I

Happy Motoring. ;-)

Pocahontas, Host


  • gberrygberry Posts: 21
    does cold weather affect the remote entry? I was able to activate the door locks from about 25 - 20 feet away, but since our cold weather spell I have to be right next to the car for it to work. Same deal with my husband's remote entry which is why I don't think it is a battery replacement problem.
  • I do not know if there is any weather affect on the remote entry. However, since you and I are in the same region and have the same vehicle our experiences SHOULD be similiar. I have not noticed any differences the past few days...although I am usually only 10-15ft away (within eyesight of the door lock) when I try to unlock.
  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    I have had the same problem on occasionally? Once I couldn't get it to work and I had to use the key. After a drive it was fine? I have also seen a problem where the front end was in a snow drift. I think the remote entry is sonic rather than infra-red. I think the sensor is under the front and oriented facing forward. This isn't much help, but I have had intermittent, rather infrequent problems too.
  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    I took the initiative and looked under my 99 Trooper today and looked at the fuel line near the transfer case. I think it is above a skid plate, it looks like a metal pipe which has a rubber hose fastened to it running towards the rear. It looks protected from rocks and other road hazards, but it definitely looks vulnerable to rupture if the 4wd system twists and presses against it. Furthermore, Isuzu telling me that the 99 and 00 models have different 4wd systems is like saying the 99 SLX and Trooper are different!
  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    I read the VIN number report on Edmunds a month or two ago and it didn't line up to mine? Was their report bad? I don't know, but here is a link that goes digit by digit through it and it seems pretty accurate.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    is accurate, at least for my 2000 Trooper.

  • Does anybody (ie: Mike) know for sure where the receiver is for the remote entry? I also have a hunch it is in the front somewhere, as I've noticed occasional problems "hitting it" when approaching from the back. I do have a limited with the tinted back, which might affect it if the receiver is inside.

    The range I have is small compared to my wife's Maxima. I can hit her car from 50 feet - no joke.

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I heard that the reciever for the the keyless entry is located under or @ the drivers kick panel. Personally I've never had a problem getting it to open, I have had problems @ distance but once I get withing 10 feet there is no problem. I've found i can reach 100ft or more by placing the transmitter up to my chin and using myself as an antenna :)

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I'll post the link tonight. I have it bookmarked @ home. GM could have changed the transmission, causing the change in fuel lines. Just trying to justify their not being able to help you out. At this point, i'm inclined to believe them, because it would be cheaper for them to just do it if they could than to keep fighting you. Don't worry, if your truck catches fire, we'll collectively pursue a class action law suit!

  • gpm5gpm5 Posts: 785
    There are some apparent differences between the '99 and '00 transmissions in that the '00 is said to have grade logic/ The '99 does hold low gear on a grade at low speed, but I'm not sure how this compares to the '99.

    The crash test for the jackaroo was performed on a July 1998 vehicle, which is presumably identical to the '98 trooper. Both full frontal and offset crashes were performed. There is a pretty thorough description at

    No mention of a gas line leak, although the offset crash did result in the wheel pushing in the floor space.
  • gpm5gpm5 Posts: 785
    with two broken legs how would one get out before the fire. Bottom line: avoid offset crashes and steer away, if someone is coming over the line toward you. Not always as easy as it sounds--once I had the bizarre experience of someone passing an oncoming car on a bridge in a no passing zone. The bridge was barely wide enough for two vehicles. When I looked in my rear view mirror in disbelief, sure enough the idiot had gone right between me and the oncoming car that he had passed. I had steered to the right as far as I could and the other guy must have done the same allowing the suicidal maniac to get through.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    There have not been 1 single case of this happening in the real world. Only in the theoretical one! I prefer to rely on the real world facts than purely on vacum tests.

  • Bought a 2000 Trooper last week, like it a lot but am getting used to the body roll in tight corners (always drove sedans before this). Could anyone shed some light on this subject, I would like to know if there are any aftermarket products such as new stiffer shocks (or whatever) to tighten up the truck when cornering. Thanks
  • re: Trooper handling

    The disconcerting feeling you get while rounding corners in your Trooper is due to two related measurements: the TOTAL lean of the Trooper, which is how far it leans in a corner, and the RATE of lean of the Trooper, which is how FAST it leans over.

    There are several things you can do to improve the feel of your Trooper.

    The first thing is to throw your stock shock absorbers away, and replace them with some good after market shocks. I just installed (on my '99 Trooper) Rancho 9000 shocks, which are 5-way adjustable from very firm to almost as soft as stock. They will not change the total lean of your truck in a corner, but they will change the rate at which it leans, slowing down so that it will not feel quite as disconcerting. Cost: about $220 mail order, if you do it yourself; probably between $50-75 more to have a shop install them. At the lower settings, these shocks are almost as soft as stock, but with far more driving control, and a slower lean rate.

    Some people have posted that changing the sway bar bushings results in less lean, although the difference proably is not too dramatic. (I have not tried this yet.) Cost: People have reported about $20 for the bushings, and very easy to install yourself.

    The third option would be to replace the anti sway bars with thicker bars. has a pair of thicker bars for about $280. I have not tried these, but they are on my "next year" list. They are the only way to reduce the TOTAL amount of lean in a corner, and should result in the most dramatic results. They would be a perfect match for the Rancho 9000 shocks.

    Good luck.
  • The range on my '00 S transmitter is consistenly 50'+ a bit more. Maybe the batteries in your transmitters need replacing having sat on the shelf for a too long (seriously).

    Didnt scroll back to see who, but one of the newer "posters" on these subjects reported getting a leather steering wheel cover from cool! I'm definately putting one on my xmas wish list! I realize if you have an LS or a Limited you dont need one but if you have an S....BTW, they come in two-tones as well.
  • Good find. It is a 40 MPH test, the same as the recent test on the 2000. I am still not 100% convinced, and still don't necessarily believe Isuzu's position, but this is a good start. I too plan on avoiding any frontal crashes at 40 MPH. I wonder how a winch bumper would effect the results? The Trooper has little or no front bumper, I wonder if a steel bumper would channel more force through the frame and possibly decrease risk of injury? I have been planning on getting one when/if all of the paint is off the front bumper. I don't take complete stock of "vacuum" tests, but they are a good yards stick to compare safety. Thanks for the information and obviously participating in the forum is worthwhile! Happy to be back.
  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    Don't know where my user info went. I checked out the GM powertrain site today, I have it book-marked at work. It didn't reveal much other than the current transmission is a year 2000 release? That may be something and may not. I didn't get a chance to scour the site for any information about 99/00.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181

    Is the website for anyone interested.

    Hey could you post the part#s for the Rancho 9000 shocks, because rancho claims they don't make one for 98-01 (probably never updated thier books after the body change) also how easy is it to change the settings manually?

    Thanks in advance for the info.

    As for a steel bumper... That would be cool. Check out great guys and decent prices. Awsome materials and workmanship.

    I still miss my big steel bumpers on my '74 old 98!

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I did a test tonight for you guys... In the damp NYC weather, I got about 65 feet diagonally away from the drivers front and it worked w/o a problem.

  • bluedevilsbluedevils Posts: 2,554
    I've had good luck with mine. Weather seems to have no effect. Approaching from behind the vehicle seems to diminish range. From the side or the front, I usually get a connection at 20-30 yards (60-90 feet).
  • bluedevilsbluedevils Posts: 2,554
    I've posted these details before, but since the discussion of crash tests is back I figured I'd give a quick summary. Basically, my Trooper protected me very well, although the truck was damaged enough that it was considered a total loss (i.e., totaled).

    A year ago, I was driving my 96 Trooper (3.2L, automatic trans, shift-on-the-fly 4WD) at 50-55 mph. A 98 Cadillac STS ran a red light, heading from my left to my right. I was in the far left lane of 4 lanes of traffic. Once I realized the guy wasn't stopping, I slowed down and attempted to swerve left to cut in behind him-- i.e., let him squeak past me. It almost worked but not quite. I estimate he was driving about 40mph. At impact I was probably going 40 as well. This was not an 80mph collision, since we were driving perpendicular, not head-on. I "t-boned" the Caddy so hard that his car spun around and was hit on the other side by the Chevy Astro van next to me.

    My right rear tire blew, both airbags deployed, and somehow my Trooper skidded to a controlled stop.

    On impact, my Trooper hit the Caddy square. I guess this isn't an offset crash-- is that when a vehicle's corner hits another vehicle or an object? The bumper and frame on my Trooper were pushed back considerably into the engine compartment, but the passenger compartment was fully intact. The repair estimate was $12-13k, so my vehicle was totaled since its value was only $15-17k (I got a great settlement and great service from Allstate, by the way).

    Looking back, I was glad I was driving a Trooper. I may have avoided the Caddy in a sportier car, but I'm not sure. The Trooper handled well, and I was not hesitant to swerve while braking at about 50mph. The guy in the Caddy was okay, but his car was mangled-- looked like a textbook Milachi crunch from Happy Days.

    Looking back at the top of my post, I ended up giving a "long story" rather than a quick summary. What can I say-- I'm proud of the way my Trooper protected me in that accident. I had a stiff neck for about a week, but that was it. And no, I did not pursue damages-- I'm not that kind of guy.
  • bluedevilsbluedevils Posts: 2,554
    I did some digging over at and found a few posts with info. I can't vouch for accuracy, but I think most of it's probably correct. The first stuff is a post I originally made on After that I added other details from other posters.

    It's my understanding that the 3.5L is based on the 3.2L, but I don't know how different it is. The info I have from the '99 Trooper brochure indicates the following about the 3.5L:
    - aluminum alloy block and heads (as does the 3.2L, I think)
    - Dual overhead camshafts (the 96/97 3.2L was SOHC, so this is a difference)
    - sequential multi-port fuel injection (same as 3.2L)
    - direct ignition with coil over plug (same as 3.2L)

    One thing I heard somewhere that raised my eyebrows about the 3.5L is this: it has mechanical valve lifters, as opposed to the hydraulic lifters in the 3.2L. I don't know if this is true, and if so, what it really means (I'm no gearhead). Would this mean the 3.5L would require periodic valve adjustments
    (like the 2.6L 4-cylinder did)?

    ***Technical response from Dennis ([email protected]):

    The 3.5L DOHC has been designed to be quieter,lighter and more powerful than the 3.2L SOHC engine. The rocker arms and shafts have been eliminated and there are no valve liters used in the 3.5L engine. The 3.5L cam lobes act directly on the valve stems through a cam follower(small bucket that houses a shim). Isuzu recommends checking the valve clearance every 60,000 miles and adjust only if necessary. Generally, if the engine is not making any ticking sounds, then this valve adjustment isn't really important. These improvements have given the 3.5L a boost in power and have eliminated an industry criticism about the overall noise in the 3.2L engine.

    The 3.5L has the same bore(piston hole diameter)but has a longer piston stoke for more power. The intake manifold used on the 3.5L is now electronically controlled giving it another increase in power.

    This engine was in development for five years and has now been in service for two years. It is performing very well (typical of Isuzu engine quality). With the increased power and complete elimination of the entire valve train, the
    3.5L is definitely worthy of your consideration.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Also has Drive by Wire...

  • sbcookesbcooke Posts: 2,297
    I have read that the 3.5 is essentially the same motor as the 3.2, just has a different bore? The valve information is interesting, I have also read about some of the other ways manufacturers are pushing HP, such as creating the cylinders, camshafts and lifters with a computer controlled laser. A lot of these improvements involve creating much less friction and more HP. I like the airflow design that Isuzu employs to keep power constant through such a wide rev band and temperature range. Pretty cool where technology is taking us.

    On the flip side, I think we will be seeing more long term engine problems in many vehicles these days. The Pathfinder for example, automakers are now pushing some motors to provide much more HP via advances in technology, are the manufacturers pushing engine blocks further than they can handle? Relying on a superclean camshaft and cylinders may not work with 150,000 miles and years of metal grinding against each other. When a motor gets that old seals don't fit, parts have worn, etc.. I guess we will see. The Isuzu motor has been around a while so I hope to get at least 150,000+ out of it.
  • Mike -

    I just installed the Rancho 9000s on my '99.

    Wow- HUGE difference! I drive over 6 speed bumps getting into my housing community, and the difference going over the bumps is night and day. With the stock Tokicos, the word that came to mind was "sproingoingoingoing" as the rear rode up, then bottomed as I came off the bumps, and continued bouncing.

    With the Ranchos, currently set on "3" all around, the Trooper just hops over the bumps like they weren't there. I actually prefer a soft ride, so I am going to switch to "2" all around to experiment after fully evaluating the "3" position. (This will become important when I install my Valley Spring Works progressive rate coil springs which are currently sitting in my living room.)

    The part numbers are 9214 for the front, 9215 for the rear. I checked with Isuzu and verified that the shocks did not change between '97 and '00, so I ordered the Ranchos for the '97.

    They installed very easily, although more easily on the passenger side rear than the driver side rear due to the muffler. The rears were a tight fit onto the bottom stud, and the shocks MUST be put onto the bottom stud and then pivoted into the top shackle. The trick on the driver's side is to put shock onto the bottom stud while the shock is mostly vertical; if you do not, you will not be able to swing it all the way to the top shackle because the muffler is in the way. (Yet another lesson learned the frustrating way.)

    They adjust very easily, although you will need to put a knee down to turn the knob, and there will invariably be oil next to your parking spot when you want to do so.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Did you notice that the power of the pathfinder comes to 240hp @ a whopping 6200+rpms Who the heck drives consistently that high in the rev range? I guess they really just wanted the HP # for advertising purposes...

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Thanks for the info, i snipped that and e-mailed it to myself for future reference. If you don't mind could you post where you bought em from? Also how about those springs advantages/disadvantages.. etc.

    Another question i had is I can't seem to see and front springs on this vehicle, am I not looking in the right spot?

  • gpm5gpm5 Posts: 785
    Good post on a real-world crash test. I'm glad to hear that the trooper kept you safe and did its job well.
  • Mike-

    I bought the Ranchos from . I have to tell you that they took over 6 weeks of harassing them to get them to send the shocks. I believe that they are a kitchen table type of operation, in which they take the order, then have the supplier drop ship to the customer. I dealt with "Dorian", the owner, who seemed genuinely upset that I did not get my order for a while. You may be able to search for other suppliers on the net. Bear in mind that it might pay to wait, because Rancho does a "4 for the price of 3" special in the springtime. I did not get the special; I paid about $61 apiece.

    You don't see springs on the front because you are looking for the wrong type of spring. The front suspension is a "torsion bar" suspension, which uses bars that are subject to a twisting motion. The twist in the bars supply the spring action to keep the front of the suspension at the right level. A bonus of this type of suspension is that it is only a matter of tightening the bars to raise the front suspension, although this method of suspension adjustment comes with an equivalent loss in suspension travel. You can find some posts about the torsion bars on the regular offroad Trooper boards.

    Finally, the springs. I got the springs made not to raise the vehicle. In fact, they are supposed to be stock height. I got them because they will help firm up the rear suspension. I tow a 4,000 pound boat, and when I hook it up for the ride to the lake, the Trooper looks like a low rider in the rear, which is actually riding on the bump stops. The aftermarket springs are initially about 25% firmer than stock, but as they are compressed they become about 50% firmer than stock, thus the term 'progressive rate'. I currently feel the suspension bottom if I have more than two people in the truck and I go over a speed bump; I don't like this. I just need to find time to install the springs.

  • I was just about to take my trooper in to have them fix the rattle in the right side of the dash. Instead I saw your post and placed a felt pad on the plastic nub touching the hood. Needless to say no more annoying chatter. Thanks again
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