2001 Mitsubishi Legnum VR4 2.5 V6 twin turbo

Summary:

Wagon with balls that'll drain your wallet

Faults:

Gear box seal blew; $1500 to reseal (120K).

Transfer box wore out; $1000 to replace (125K).

Steering rods stuffed out; roughly $900.

Front end suspension racks got movement and had to be replaced; $1000.

General Comments:

PRO's:

If you have the bucks to throw at it every time something goes wrong, this is a great car. Also good if you are looking for performance and space at the same time.

The AYC is awesome, the car handles like it's on rails.

The engine is the best thing about this car; it's got so much torque, you can just cruise around in third gear if you want, and you are king of the highway. Passing on hills with your car full of people and gear is no problem.

It's a fairly hard ride, but if you prefer a car that handles well, then it's worth it.

Owned the car for 6 years.

CONS:

I lived in fear of the automatic transmission failing. The transmission mechanic that did the reseal said these gear boxes are notorious for failing. Jump on the VR4 forums and you'll see this is true. BAM, $4000 if you can be bothered fixing it, as these cars sell for so little second hand, it's hardly worth it.

Luckily mine held out, although the seal did go and so did the transfer box. Also you'll get 400kms out of a tank if you are lucky (but you will have fun).

If you get a paint chip, it will rust if you don't do anything. My Toyota doesn't do that, so makes me think Mitsi paint is rubbish. Remember, this is a performance car, it's not designed to last to 300,000k's without major work. I wouldn't own a complicated car like this past 150k's, as something big is likely to go, either the head, or the transmission, or the AYC.

Also, when you need the cam belt replaced, expect to pay about $1500, as there is so much labour pulling all the turbos off etc to get to the belt. All the front end suspension and steering rod stuff that needed replacing, I don't think there is an excuse for this; shouldn't fail this early.

Don't think I could buy another Mitsi after this, I'll stick with brands are designed to last.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 24th November, 2011

1997 Mitsubishi Legnum ST 2.5

Summary:

Worst car I've ever owned

Faults:

First WOF (5 months after ownership, had passed WOF on purchase 1 month earlier), all 4 shocks leaking, had to be replaced + replace right front suspension arm, replace timing belt.

1 week after first WOF, torque converter stripped gearbox.

Combined total = $2800 to fix after 10,000 km put on the car.

2 months after first WOF, A/C compressor crapped out after an additional 1,500 km put on the car.

Total = $1700 to fix.

Digital clock/ stereo display intermittently will not work.

General Comments:

Worst car I've ever owned. Coming from having a trusty 1997 Toyota Corolla that I put 120,000 km on with never a hiccup, only required regular oil changes and brake replacements. Defied Canadian winters and worked perfectly through -35 weather never a blip.

The Legnum was purchased for $5,500 from a friend who had it checked prior to selling, was deemed to be tidy and an overall good car. After putting 12,000 km on it after 7 months and having it crap parts left and right, guzzle gas at a horrendous rate (even with majority highway driving), I am getting rid of it and getting a Toyota. Will never purchase a Mitsubishi again. Do NOT buy a Legnum. Ever.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 3rd February, 2010

5th Feb 2010, 02:21

There are a few of these coming into Australia now, used via Japan and are one of the (very few) cars on the governments list of approved 'enthusiast' cars. The prices are much higher than in NZ, and parts would be hideously expensive as the bog standard Galant version of this model wasn't sold new here. I have no idea where you would get them from, unless you had a mate in NZ who could send things over.

I contacted an importer to see if I could import a Mazda Atenza (higher spec version of Mazda6) and the woman said it wasn't on the governments approved list, and then she tried to convince me into a V6TT Legnum 'cause she had one herself and was raving about it. Needless to say the conversation ended there.

They might look nice and go fast (when working) but after my experience with Japanese import Mitsi's in NZ (Libero, Eterna), I wouldn't touch one again, especially over here.