1998 Isuzu Rodeo LS 4x4 V6 from North America
The reason Isuzu isn't sold here anymore
OEM exhaust installed 2008 (have receipt from prior owner). Cracked in two places a month after purchase in 2009.
Electronics were plagued by a legion of gremlins. Dashboard lights worked on occasion, 4WD switch too. Thank God it didn't have power windows or locks.
Driver's window rail collapsed, glass cracked.
Valves went at 140k.
A/C compressor died at 145k, replaced.
4WD switch failed at 156k, replaced with junkyard part.
Heater coil died at 178k, replaced.
Rear lower hatch's handle/lock broke, stuck open, took two months to locate part (thank God for bungees).
Rear seat bottom dislodged from vehicle, bolts rotted.
179k, radiator blew.
190k, miss-fire detected.
Burned 4qts of oil every 3,000 miles. Towards the end of its life I stopped maintaining level and just burned the oil out, changed the filter, and added 4 more quarts.
210k, engine exploded (I expected it to). Sent rods through the engine and the force popped the hood open and cracked windshield. Car: Junked.
A great idea built by THE lowest bidder. It drove like a nice rugged SUV (rare these days), but the sheet metal was terribly thin and the interior plastic was crap, even for the 1990s. The front crumplezone is paper thin in areas and the frame/subframe, though rust free and intact, was poorly designed and I saw potential for failures if impacted heavily from the side. I'm amazed Honda willingly sold these.
I bought it for $1,000 off a fellow mechanical engineer who was fanatical about services. He purchased it new and sold it to me upon his retirement in 2009. He had a 4" binder of ALL receipts, including car washes. I was impressed.
I bought a brand new car in 2009, but needed a beater for the baseball team I help run and for camping etc. The vehicle was OK for what I needed. It was cheap enough in initial purchase cost, where I didn't care about it and it was functional enough to be safe. This thing nickel and dimed me to death.
Towards the end, after all the repairs and rewiring and aggravations, I stopped caring and decided to let the car commit suicide when I could tell the engine was dying from a misfire and other issues. I could feel the power depleting and it began knocking and vibrating. I decided to drive it home, and the engine blew going up a hill two minutes from home.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No
Review Date: 13th November, 2010