Results 1 to 16 of 16
  1. #1
    rock hopper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Crawlerado Springs
    Member #
    15304

    Question 1988 Mitsubishi Mighty Max

    I know this isn't a 4x4 but feel its a good place to get some quick answers. I'm looking at picking up this "cute" lil' truck as the girl called it, and was wondering if anyone had any opinions on them. It has a 5 speed and 130k on the clock and is just over 1k. Is there anything I need to look for on this truck specifically?
    Thanks To All
    Clean 1986 4Runner, I've joined the dark side

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Grand Junction
    Member #
    1070
    This is the same truck as the Dodge D50. The engines tend to be a little weak and may burn some oil with that kind of mileage. I believe head gaskets were an issue with those as well. You might want to do a google search for head gaskets and that truck or the Mitsubishi Montero/Dodge Raider that had the same engines. Also expect the typical Chrysler paint problems and that this is a light duty vehicle.

    Kevin
    92 Cherokee Laredo<br />4.5" Lift, 31x10.50 BFG AT's<br />Rock Rails, Skids, Disconnects<br />4:10 gears, Trac-Lock Rear <br />True Trac Front

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Greeley, CO
    Member #
    13125
    Would be an awesome candidate for a DSM 2.0L Turbo swap lol

  4. #4
    rock hopper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Crawlerado Springs
    Member #
    15304
    Well I'm buying it as the isurance on my Jeep is $305 a month and gas 13mpg and this truck costs $67 a month to insure

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Longmont, CO
    Member #
    10744
    Aftermarket is practically non-existant compared to just about anything else.
    President, CO Chapter TTORA
    Check out www.ttora.com, and www.yotatech.com to 'wheel with great Toyota folks!
    1993 Toyota 4Runner with some armor, lockers, dual cases and stuff ...
    Stop with the mods and get on the trail!

  6. #6
    CapnCrunch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Colorado Springs
    Member #
    7838
    Quote Originally Posted by ~tc~ View Post
    Aftermarket is practically non-existant compared to just about anything else.
    Not non-existant...just requires more homework, money, patience, time, and even a bit of luck. My truck is proof of that. But yes, building out a Jeep or a 'Yota is a lot easier.

    Now to answer to OP, the 4-banger engine provides enough torque for the trail, but it's a dog on the highway. There are ways to increase the overall performance (turbo or gears if you're lucky enough to get a hold of some), but expect it to be underpowered on the highway.

    The most important thing to do at first is to make sure you have a cooling system in tip-top shape. If your engine starts to overheat you need to pull it over and shut it off immediately, otherwise it's pretty-much guaranteed to blow a head gasket. However, if your cooling system is working as it should, you should be fine.

    If the previous owner indicates at all that the head gasket has been replaced, specifically ask them where they got the cylinder head checked and machined. If they didn't, and just popped it off, replaced the gasket, and put it back on, then you should expect to be replacing the head gasket within a couple months. That happened to my Montero a couple months after I bought it...same scenario, same engine. After blowing a head gasket, those heads do require inspection and machining. After doing it the right way, my engine has been fine for several years.

    As with any vehicle that age, you'll probably need to go through and replace little things here and there. With this truck, you may be looking at pitman/idler arms if they're the originals. If you're having sluggish engine performance (beyond the "norm", that is), and if the cat is original, you'll probably have to replace it.

    Also, the 5-speed tranny in the 4-banger trucks are not the greatest if you're hard on transmissions. But if you're easy on vehicles it'll last. I've managed to stretch the life in mine, but it does have its issues.

    And there will be other things. Over the last few years, I've replaced a number of items that were just original, old, worn-out parts and it's become a reliable truck.

    Edit: Forgot to add...if you're going to go ahead with acquiring that pickup, check out the Mitsubishi section of www.4x4wire.com. Seriously, there's no better knowledge about Mitsubishi trucks on the 'net than the gang there. And they're good folks. They won't flame you for asking newb questions.
    Last edited by CapnCrunch; April 20th, 2009 at 07:25 PM.
    Joe
    88 Mitsubishi Montero 2.6L 5-speed - dual-locked, low-geared, armored, lifted, lit, rigged for dive...

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
    Would be an awesome candidate for a DSM 2.0L Turbo swap lol
    Is this what your talking about?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2BX9lwMcoH0

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by StrokedYj View Post
    Is this what your talking about?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2BX9lwMcoH0
    That's just too funny. We had a '83 4x4 Ranger that we put a '88 turbo T-bird 2.3 in, it was way fun to go stomp 4.3 S10's, I'd be in 2nd half way through a light before he even knew what hit him.
    America, land without a president as of 1-20-09 R.I.P.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Marcus View Post
    Would be an awesome candidate for a DSM 2.0L Turbo swap lol
    that would be SO TIGHT!

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by CapnCrunch View Post
    Not non-existant...just requires more homework, money, patience, time, and even a bit of luck. My truck is proof of that. But yes, building out a Jeep or a 'Yota is a lot easier.

    Now to answer to OP, the 4-banger engine provides enough torque for the trail, but it's a dog on the highway. There are ways to increase the overall performance (turbo or gears if you're lucky enough to get a hold of some), but expect it to be underpowered on the highway.

    The most important thing to do at first is to make sure you have a cooling system in tip-top shape. If your engine starts to overheat you need to pull it over and shut it off immediately, otherwise it's pretty-much guaranteed to blow a head gasket. However, if your cooling system is working as it should, you should be fine.

    If the previous owner indicates at all that the head gasket has been replaced, specifically ask them where they got the cylinder head checked and machined. If they didn't, and just popped it off, replaced the gasket, and put it back on, then you should expect to be replacing the head gasket within a couple months. That happened to my Montero a couple months after I bought it...same scenario, same engine. After blowing a head gasket, those heads do require inspection and machining. After doing it the right way, my engine has been fine for several years.

    As with any vehicle that age, you'll probably need to go through and replace little things here and there. With this truck, you may be looking at pitman/idler arms if they're the originals. If you're having sluggish engine performance (beyond the "norm", that is), and if the cat is original, you'll probably have to replace it.

    Also, the 5-speed tranny in the 4-banger trucks are not the greatest if you're hard on transmissions. But if you're easy on vehicles it'll last. I've managed to stretch the life in mine, but it does have its issues.

    And there will be other things. Over the last few years, I've replaced a number of items that were just original, old, worn-out parts and it's become a reliable truck.

    Edit: Forgot to add...if you're going to go ahead with acquiring that pickup, check out the Mitsubishi section of www.4x4wire.com. Seriously, there's no better knowledge about Mitsubishi trucks on the 'net than the gang there. And they're good folks. They won't flame you for asking newb questions.
    You forgot to mention the funky carburetors.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by JeepTherapy View Post
    Also expect the typical Chrysler paint problems...
    It's not a Chrysler, it's a Mitsubishi.

  12. #12
    CapnCrunch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Colorado Springs
    Member #
    7838
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim B View Post
    You forgot to mention the funky carburetors.
    True. I had plenty of trouble with mine, until a few years ago I replaced mine with a reman and it's been great since.

    But you're right...it is a complex carb. When I replaced mine, I counted the number of connections I had to remove:

    1 electrical connector
    1 throttle linkage
    2 fuel lines
    2 coolant lines
    7 vacuum lines

  13. #13

    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Parker
    Member #
    19
    Images
    5
    I had an '86 D50 4x4 and I hated that POS carburetor.

  14. #14
    Cherokeenut, any pics of the old 83 Ranger SVO?

    Always been a fan of the 2.3L T into a 2wd ranger, 4x4 = funnay!
    One of our best mechanics over on the exploder forum is putting a SVO drivetrain into a 93 Navajo 4x4 on 33's.... should be pretty interesting! LOL

    all I can think is LOOK AT ALL THAT ROOM!!! you could get two of them in there!!
    1988 Ford Bronco II, Gt-40p 5.0L, 4r70w auto, BW1354, OBD-II, cut and turned d35 TTB, 31 spline 8.8, 4wheel discs, 35" MTZ, dual ARB's and heated leather. My blood runs blue
    Bronco II forum moderator - www.Explorer4x4.com

  15. #15
    I'm glad I had a '90 mighty max. It was the first year for fuel injection. Much more power and 4 vacuum lines.

    The biggest problem I remember on the carb'd ones was the vacuum operated secondary. The diaphragm of the actuator would start leaking and were expensive and next to impossible to find. There is (was?) a webber conversion though. Figuring out the 50 billion vacuum lines is daunting though.

    Dont remember if the earlier ones had hydraulic lash adjusters or settable valve lash. The '90 had hydraulic ones and the ALL tick. Using Shell Rotella oil helps some by cleaning the gunk out but can take a while.

    Btw, my 4cyl '90 would do 75 mph from georgetown to eisenhower in 5th gear with a bed full of camping gear Best mileage I got was a camping trip to lake granby and back, got 34 mpg.
    --Dave
    1999 Rodeo LS 3.2 4x4 5 Speed 33x12.50-15 Goodyear Wranger Duratrac 4" Lift - Rancho 9000x - No-Slip Locker rear

  16. #16
    rock hopper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Crawlerado Springs
    Member #
    15304
    Well there was something really wrong with the engine. It leaked oil everywhere(literally) the whole block was covered as was everything around it and the front of the crank had a awful wobble. So now I looking at a 1988 VW Cabriolet the girl thinks this is cute also lol(she has to get a run up to get in the jeep)
    Also how bout backhalf and stretch it so I can tow the jeep.
    Last edited by rock hopper; April 22nd, 2009 at 10:19 PM.

Similar Threads

  1. 'Mighty Mo' Comes out of Drydock
    By DaJudge in forum General Chit Chat
    Replies: 36
    Last Post: January 11th, 2010, 07:00 PM
  2. The Mighty Mo is getting a facelift
    By Da Kine in forum General Chit Chat
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: October 15th, 2009, 04:25 AM
  3. 1988 YJ Howell TBI 258
    By JeepBBQ in forum General 4x4 Discussion
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: December 1st, 2006, 07:51 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •