1996 Isuzu Rodeo LS 3.2 V6 from North America


You have to learn about car maintenance before you can talk about them


The only Thing wrong with this vechile is the knocking sound that I have had for the last two years. When I took it to a dealer, their response was that the oil has to travel up to the engine, however, that did not solve the problem. I burn a quart every 1000 to 2000 miles. a car with this many miles will burn a quart of oil all the time no matter what car it is. however, that is the only problem I have had.

General Comments:

The car run great.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th April, 2007

15th Oct 2008, 09:32

I agree with your post. My Rodeo has the same problem. I was told by mechanics to replace the engine, but I think I'm going to just buy a new car, which upsets me cause I really like the Rodeo.

15th Oct 2008, 22:10

I had a 1995 Rodeo. It was a horrible experience. If you sell it, now is the time before it tortures you to death.

1996 Isuzu Rodeo 3.2 Mitsubishi V6 from North America


Best all around SUV I have ever owned


The back door latches got rusty and the doors would not open so I dismantled the doors and replaced the latches.

General Comments:

This is a great vehicle, has plenty of power, and I average 18 miles per gallon.

There is one problem with the automatic transmission that nobody has been able to figure out. When the outside temperature drops below 20 degrees, the "Check Transmission" light comes on when I start it in the morning and I have to shift the transmission manually all the way to work. After work, the light is not on and the transmission works perfectly. This condition has existed for the last 60,000 miles.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 17th January, 2007

2nd Feb 2007, 23:28

Just wanted to add to the original poster, FYI, the engine in your truck is ALL 100% Isuzu 3.2L 24V V6 Sohc engine - there's no Mitsubishi period in this truck.

And the auto transmission is the GM 4L30-E Transmission.

Oh, and check the condition of your alternator, get your transmissions fluid/filter changed, and I bet the *cold tranny* issue symptoms go away. Sounds to me like your transmission could be a little low on fluid, or has dirty fluid in it.

Also, on real cold mornings, let that truck idle for about 5-7 minutes, this too, will help cure the cold tranny.

If you're wondering, I have a '97 Rodeo with 167k miles. I've owned this truck for 10yrs and 157k miles, it's an automatic too. Keep your tranny fluid changed every 25-30k miles and it will last quite some time.

Agree 100% - these are GREAT rigs!

14th Jan 2009, 14:01

Back in 1998 I purchased a used 1996 Rodeo LS (20,00 miles) and now have 105,000 miles of relatively carefree motoring. Last week the "check transmission light" came on after rough starting and then followed by some clunking in the transmission. Initially, the transmission shop was unable to get a reading on the computer code. Eventually, it was discovered that my battery, was too weak. The technician tried hooking up a new battery and the Check Transmission light went out and so far the vehicle is starting and running fine. I would recommend anyone with a similar problem, check to see if the car's battery is in good shape before purchasing more expensive alternatives, such as a new transmission, alternator etc...DG.

1996 Isuzu Rodeo from North America


I love this little car and plan to have it for a long time


I have had to replace a water pump and the temperature regulator. I had to get a new radiator at 188700 because of a tiny crack. I had to get a new back-flow reservoir for the coolant, but could not find one except for a Honda which cost $90, so I said no to that and a friend of mine put Goop on the tiny hole in the reservoir and plugged it, and now it works great. Now, I am experiencing "ticking" of the engine and have put in oil. I know it is using oil right now, so I check it frequently and add. However, Today it is "ticking" quietly after adding more than enough oil. This bothers me greatly, because I love this vehicle!!! It is just the right size and had given me great service. Everything was easily replaced when needed. I have done regular service since the beginning.

General Comments:

I had a strange problem with the car when I first got it. The engine would die when I turned to the left. After researching, they found that a wire harness was not in place correctly and was making it disconnect upon left turns. After taking care of the harness, it never happened again.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th July, 2006

30th Jul 2006, 23:23

The ticking noise coming from your engine is called the "pulley rod tensioner" or at least that's what the part guy told me at the dealership. Also, when it gets bad, everyone will tell you that is the engine, and that its screwed. No worries, tell your mechanic to check the timing as it tends to come from that area. Don't allow your mechanic to dismantle your engine, like mine did after finding nothing wrong with the engine.

6th May 2008, 13:52

In reference to the comment on this article. I have read many comments from many owners about what causes the ticking. Many have been told different reasons by mechanics for the ticking. Here is my story: I took my 1996 to dealer at 60K miles to have that ticking fixed. The mechanic said it was because oil wasn't passing through tiny rod openings and causing the top end to starve for oil.

Around 100K, I took the car to a local repair shop for the same problem. They said the rockers wear out and start ticking, it's a known issue for GM V6 engines they said. (I do recall hearing this from S-10's and Buick Regals during the 80's) Less than 20K miles later, (118,000 miles) it was ticking again and I have not done any repairs to it. It now has 193,000 miles on it, still ticking, still running. It's embarrasing but it's paid for and running.

28th Feb 2009, 15:28

I have a 1996 Isuzu Rodeo 3.2L V6 as well. It has 195K miles and has always had that ticking sound since I bought it at 130K miles. Different mechanics have all told me the same things you have mentioned, Pulley Rod Tensioner, worn rockers, small clogged oil holes starving some part of the engine. I never had it fixed and drive it as is. It does have a noticeable performance loss when the ticking is bad though.

Unfortunately the water pump broke and I didn't notice the overheating engine until it stopped. The ticking is real bad now and I'm afraid I may have burnt out the engine.

1996 Isuzu Rodeo LS 3.2L from North America


Excellent product, but is expensive to up-keep


The studs and lug nuts are made of soft metal.

Valves rattle of course.

Water pump and timing replaced at 120,000.

All suspension bushings are blown out.

Needs upper and lower ball joints.

Needs both C. V axles.

Transmission replaced at 105,000 and again at 125,000.

Alternator has gone out (my fault, I have an audio system).

Driver side door lock broke.

Center support shaft had to be replaced.

General Comments:

I love my Rodeo. She is more reliable than my Ranger.

Parts to fix the vehicle are far too expensive.

Handles good and rides great for an SUV.

No major upgrades are available. Have to modify and adjust everything with trail and error.

Has a lot of miles and hope to double the mileage that is on it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 27th April, 2005

1996 Isuzu Rodeo from North America


Best SUV for the money!


Drivers window and passenger power windows failed at 70,000 miles. I repaired them both within a couple of hours for about $180.

A computer chip needed replacing at 60,000 miles.

Alternator replaced at 85,000 miles.

General Comments:

This has been an extremely reliable vehicle.

I replaced the water pump when the I had the timing belt changed, but it was still fine.

I have had this truck for over 7 years and it has been in the shop 2 times. Nothing major. I even got 75,000 miles off of the factory tires!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th November, 2004

1996 Isuzu Rodeo LS 3.2 V6 from North America


Very satisfied with the overall performance


So far I have not had anything to go wrong with my car.

General Comments:

I feel secure in this car, especially in rainy weather.

The seats are not the most comfortable for long distance driving.

I like the sound system.

It could use more vents for the air conditioning.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th September, 2002