2003 Mitsubishi Montero

Jan. 1, 2020
Midway through this truck's production run, Mitsubishi installed a larger 3.8L engine. While styling and comfort features make it well-suited for family duties, this unibody truck has a reputation for outstanding off-road performance.
Midway through this truck's production run, Mitsubishi installed a larger 3.8L engine. While styling and comfort features make it well-suited for family duties, this unibody truck has a reputation for outstanding off-road performance.
The drivetrain can be operated in four-wheel-drive (4WD) on dry roads. The center differential can be locked, and the 4WD traction control system and independent suspension at both ends enhance its already impressive capabilities. This truck's predecessor won the Paris-Dakar rally, twice.
When used off-road or for towing, maintenance requirements are much greater than outlined here, so check the severe service maintenance schedule found in the owner's manual. Mitsubishi recommends using a flush machine to change transmission fluid, but if one isn't available, the fluid can be drained by disconnecting the hose to the cooler and, with the transmission in Neutral, running the engine for no more than one minute. This will get about two thirds of the fluid out, so refill and repeat to complete the change.

There is a coolant drain on the block and two bleeders in the main coolant pipes in front of the engine. Without a scan tool, ignition timing at curb idle is 10 degrees before top dead center (BTDC), and the direct ignition system (DIS) coils fire plugs Number 1 and 4, 2 and 5, 3 and 6.

There are only two serious service bulletins, addressing MIL illumination with P0125 or P0134. They tend to set falsely at low ambient temperatures, and the fix is to reprogram the powertrain control module (PCM).

Mitsubishi uses service bulletins to update service manual procedures and specs, so check TSBs before starting work.

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