2002 Mitsubishi Magna TJ 3.5 from Australia and New Zealand


Good value, but small problems need to be sorted out.


Nothing has specifically gone wrong, but the car does not feel robust.

There is a 'clunking' in the drivers seat at the level of the lumbar support. It seems to 'clunk' when cornering.

The transmission does not change very cleanly from 1-2. Topping up the transmission fluid improved the problem, but it is still there.

The radio has a buzzing noise which increases in intensity with the engine revs.

The car is not very economical, recording fuel consumption of around 13 litres/100 km around town - which is a fair bit higher than all reports I have read to date.

The car idles very roughly which I understand is unusual, though I have been advised by a Mitsubishi dealer that the 3.5 litre V6 does not idle very smoothly.

General Comments:

Seat height is very low. I would prefer a higher position, or greater range of adjustment.

Reach to the steering wheel feels to be far away. Adjustment for reach would be nice.

Wipers do not have an option for a 'single wipe'. The lever must be moved to 'on' and back to 'off'.

The car is still under new car warranty and I am hoping that all problems identified to date will be fixed.

Split fold rear seats would have been a good option.

The options fitted are great value in comparison with Ford, Holden and Toyota. The latter two are markedly higher in price, though I suppose this is recovered to a certain extent in re-sale.

The car feels good overall, but needs a few things fixed before I can start to rave about it to my friends.

The car looks good with aftermarket wheels (standard 15") and a rear spoiler.

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

Review Date: 26th June, 2004

15th Dec 2004, 10:52

I don't think your dealer is right. Magna's (especially the newer models) generally have excellent idle quality and as a car, they are noted for above average NVH characteristics. I have a TJ sports (tiptronic 5sp) and it is hard to even tell if the engine is running whilst idling. Also, V6's are inherently stable with a 60degree angle between banks (such as in the Magna's power-plant). As for fuel consumption, I get about 11.5-12L/100km around town with fairly liberal throttle usage. So maybe you have some sort of engine fault? Tackle your dealer a bit more and see if you get anywhere.

2002 Mitsubishi Magna TJ 3.5 petrol from Australia and New Zealand


A true performance car that isn't a WRX, Commodore or Falcon


The Ralliart badge on the boot is starting to deteriorate.

Other than that, nothing has gone wrong with the car.

General Comments:

The rear wing is not very subtle, but kind of grows on you after a while.

The engine is outstanding and has ample amounts of torque and power.

Fuel economy is best in class.

It has the same power to weight ratio (manual) as a WRX and has the fastest top speed of any Australian six cylinder. Don't try this on the road!

Handling is also a strong point, especially fast, flowing corners. It maintains it's poise even when there are irregularities in the road surface.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 8th March, 2004

16th May 2004, 03:31

Yes, the Magna is a very nice vehicle. Fast, comfortable, composed, etc. BUT... You cannot realistically compare it to a WRX. Your assertion that it has a better power to weight than a WRX is incorrect.

Current WRX: 168kW & 1395kg = 8.03kg/kW

Current Magna VR-X: 163kW & 1532kg = 9.4kg/kW.

Yes, I know these are the current vehicles, but there is a significant difference in power to weight.

2002 Mitsubishi Magna VRX 3.5L V6 from Australia and New Zealand


A nice looking lemon


Needed to be fixed :

New gearbox and clutch

Needed a new ECU

Needed a head gasket fixed.

CV joints needed to be replaced.

Steering shudder.

Rear right power window died.

Rough idle.

Air bag light went on a few occations,

General Comments:

I found this car to below average. It is comfortable and its very nice inside. But the problems with the gearbox and clutch was a pain in the bum. The resale values on these cars are crap, but great for 2nd hand buyers. It is well built. But its isn't built well enough.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 28th September, 2003

22nd Mar 2006, 05:17

I have owned one since new will be 6 yrs old soon and I haven't exactly babied the car. Never a problem apart from front power windows failing. Driven it from Cairns to Brisbane 3 times and one from Cairns to mt Isa never missed a beat. Excellent car - loves a thrashing when needed and much more reliable than my other halfs Commodore, and I must say a lot quicker (a new model Commodore by the way). Must bought a real lemon mate!

2nd Oct 2009, 08:12

Here in Adelaide, the taxi drivers are all opting for Magnas cause they have double the reliability of Holden or a Ford. I work on all three for the taxis, and the Magna is by far the most reliable; engines cover 700000km and transmissions. Good for the cabby, bad for my hip pocket.