1991 Mitsubishi Magna TR sedan from Australia and New Zealand - Comments

14th Oct 2008, 08:34

Further Update,

250,000km, Computer replaced with another one ($220), this apparently is a relatively common problem on the TR model, due to alternator over voltage, i.e. defective alternator ($200). Plastic top tank on radiator split, replaced whole radiator 2nd hand for $125-00. Front end starting to get a bit rattly, probably needs new tie-rod ends on the steering and bushes in the suspension. Wife says I should trade it in on a cheap run-about, I tell her it is a cheap run-about, Current market value $2000 and falling, but I owe nothing on it, OK $550 in one month, but no car repayments EVERY month!

7th May 2010, 08:05

2010, still going, replaced alternator (again), clutch (again), EFI computer (again). But still use as a daily driver, 260,000km on the clock. Engine blows a bit of oil smoke after sitting at the traffic lights for a few minutes.

Love this car! Soon to celebrate 20 years old!

24th Nov 2010, 04:50

I bought a March 1991 build Magna TR 2.6 just over a week ago. I have always had a prejudice against Mitsubishi for some reason, but I now have to eat "humble pie".

This one, even with 267,800 km on it, seems to have been well cared for and drives like a new car. OK, the front engine mount is just about chopped out, but that is a small issue. Everything else works, and even for a 19 year old car, the build quality, paintwork, auto trans, air-con, etc is good. Hood lining sag, yes, so what? It is not important.

What is important is that I never let the tacho go over about 2500 RPM and drive the Magna according to its age.

In all, a far better choice for the money than a similar year Commodore or Falcon.

3rd Sep 2011, 06:31

Further to my comments in November 2010. Total cost of repairs/maintenance so far - one and a half liters of 20/50 engine oil. That's it. Now has 271,000 on the clock and just goes and goes. Suspected blown cylinder head gasket/warped head turned out to be a small leak fixed with a pack of SilverSeal.

Still stutters a bit when starting on a cold morning (about 2 or 3 degrees Celsius), but that is all, and once warmed up it idles at a rock steady 900rpm.

In all a lucky purchase, and apart from the Magna thirst for petrol, a pretty good 20 year old car.

More in a few months perhaps. This TR Magna is a "keeper".

22nd Mar 2012, 06:30

I posted two comments on my 1991 TR Magna (November 2010 and in July or August 2011) and called it a "keeper".

Well, I have had the Magna now for 16 months, so it's probably time for an update if anyone is interested to read.

Problems; none, well apart from a little electrical niggle, which is probably a dirty/corroded earth connection somewhere, or the voltage regulator likes to "play up" from time to time.

Surprise, surprise, my Magna has no oil leaks. Yes, most unusual for a 21 year old Magna. The Magna just "goes and goes", but I still limit the revs to about 3000 rpm and don't "flog" the car in view of its age and having 273,000 plus km on the clock. Maybe I was lucky in finding a good one (the Magna), and it certainly has removed my prejudice against the "three diamonds of death" as Mitsubishi vehicles are sometimes called.

Yep, it's heavy on petrol, but one has to remember the 2.6 litre (156 cubic inches) Magna engine is larger than the first Ford Falcon six cylinder (144 cubic inches) and the Holden "Red Motor (149 cubic inch motor), or, correct me if I am wrong, the British Leyland 6 cylinder motor used in the Austin Tasman and Kimberley, and the P76. Those vehicles were all lighter than the TR Magna, which weighs in at 1,384 kg. So, with auto, air, power steering and all that, the TR Magna 2.6 Astron Gen 2 engine does pretty well on fuel, all things considered.

I will be keeping this Magna, not just because it cruises around town like a new vehicle, but because is also just plain, old fashioned, reliable.

11th Jan 2013, 05:40

Yep, I will eat “humble pie” with regard to my previous comments. The Magna, gone, traded in for a pittance! Amazing what 10,000 or so gently driven km's will do over two years.

First, the "biggie", the automatic transmission lost second and overdrive, leaving only first, third, and reverse. Sometimes only third and reverse. Broken second/overdrive band. To have it repaired, the quote was $900.00.

Then, the EFI system, idle speed would never stay the same from day to day. Running rich, far too rich all the time. A real petrol guzzler.

After that the timing chain started to make the "I am getting stretched and loose" noises. And then, or at the same time, overheating constantly, despite a full radiator/cooling system drain, flush, refill and no leaks. Thermostat working properly. And then more, chronic misfire under load or even "on the flat". New leads, spark plugs etc, all the usual, but the problem remained. Every day, something to fix or a problem to chase and wonder "how much will this cost?".

Time to go Magna! Which it did in favour of a Ford Falcon EF Series 2.

In all, an older Magna might look good and drive well for a while, but eventually will (in my experience anyway) turn in to a "money pit". I may be in my dotage and have many miles on my clock so to speak, but I did get rid of the Magna without spending more than $100.00 in repairs.

Advice from an old codger who got caught. Should you want or need or have to buy an older car, buy Holden or Ford; they are "known quantities". Anything but a Magna.

22nd Jun 2013, 11:17

Final update of my review, retired the Magna at last (Jan 2013), welch plugs corroded out. I replaced them (nasty job) and the car still overheats and it seems the head gasket has blown. The car is not really worth repairing, as it has no sale value and I have also been quoted $2000 to get the steering and front suspension up to standard - both struts have lost their oil, various bushes are just worn out and the steering knuckles are rattly and need replacing. The clutch is on its way out etc, so it is currently parked up awaiting to go to the big scrapyard in the sky. I don't have the time, effort or inclination to do it all myself, and don't want to spend the money paying for someone to do it for me.

Bought a 2007 Mini Cooper S turbo, and after a few weeks took the Magna for a drive and realised what a crap heap the Magna had become! Got great value out of it over 18 years of ownership and daily driving, and if I get the same out of the MINI, I will be very impressed.

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