The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)





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  1. #1
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    Default The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Roll back 10 years. I bought my first 4x4. A Colt 3.0 V6, 4x4 Auto! Man, what a bakkie, really. How do you know? Sell it, and see how you miss it! Alas, one should not own the same car twice! Lets roll eight years forward again.

    Its time to retire the colt, mostly cause I'm bored of it, and also my bakkie has become my daily driver so I needed a better car. The colt was modified a lot for offroad, which means on-road comfort was terrible!

    I looked at various bakkies and the criteria was simple: leather seats, cruise control, electric windows, aircon, 4x4, lastly and was important to me at this stage was warranty, like an idiot.

    Toyota, Nice, but I don't want to get hijacked in a more expensive car.
    Ford, also Nice, still don't want to get hijacked.
    Amaroks I was too poor for.
    I looked at the Foton Tunland which is massively underrated in my opinion, but alas I went with the FIAT after looking at the equivalent Mistubishi's. The mits with the chrome grill is ugly, really it is. So FIAT it would be.

    At the end of May this year I found a 2017 4x4 Fullback with six months warranty left and I was joyful. It looked great, has decent kit for the price and was very flashy and shiny without chrome bits!

    When I test drove it it had a steering shake at 110km/h. I did not think much of it, and wrote it off as imbalanced wheels. I took it in for balancing twice and yet, it did not solve the problem. Eventually I ended up at autowiel in silverlakes and they figured out that one tire was damaged. They replaced it, and did an on-road balance for me. This too did not solve the problem, but we found that the gearbox mounts were torn. This bakkie has not been abused. The under carriage is still in a great nick! Lets put a pin in this shaking steering wheel, more on this later.

    In June I had a little bit of time to appreciate my "new" vehicle. But found a lot lacking in the build quality compared to the colt. Everything is plasticky, flimsy and rattles. The driver seat started started clicking like a Khoi-San every time you apply the brakes and turn left. The alarm system did not work properly and always beeped four times, with the occasional random fire of the alarm siren for no reason. Imagine this at 02:00 in the morning? New underwear please. I reported this broken alarm to FIAT centurion who are absolutely terrible, thank goodness they are no longer in business, who referred me to fiat menlyn.

    Getting allowed more and more time with this bakkie I noticed all the stone chips has rust. Something I never saw on the 20 year old colt.

    Finally after being able to take the bakkie to the farm, where its supposed to shine. I got an engine light on the highway and all boost gone. Stopped next to the road, switched it off, and started again with the turbo functioning as it should. This time I did not punch it uphill, it does not like it.

    With the broken and annoying alarm and check engine light, it prompted me to visit fiat menlyn. They scanned and checked everything. There was a bulletin out for the alarm issue and the check engine light came back as a faulty wastegate. I was about 1000km shy from my 70k service. I asked them if we could sort this all out once the car is booked in for the service.

    27 July came along as the service date. The bakkie was booked in for the service, broken four beeps alarm, broken wastegate and Khoi-San clicking pilots chair.
    ...
    ...
    ...
    ...
    16 Oct - I could finally pick up my bakkie. Its been a few months, should be fixed right? No sir.


    • Alarm module changed, now it does not beep at all. I essentially have a silent central locking system now. I have no idea when they will fix this, I hear nothing from Fiat, despite numerous attempts to get this sorted out.
    • New turbo installed after waiting 3 months for a gasket. YES, A GASKET! And you guessed it, they are not allowed to buy one from mits. At least this was working at the end of the LONG wait.
    • Fiat head office ordered the passenger seat, or rather LHD driver seat. So no seat replaced, and still today I do not have a new seat.
    • Service? I pulled the dipstick, at least there was clean oil, and they did not forget.
    • The gearbox mounts were changed and the 110km/h wobble was gone. However, now the other steering jiggles became present. Any secondary road you drive on the steering shakes erratically.


    So here comes the gripe with fiat head office. I phone them and complained that out of the six months as owner, the bakkie spent three months at the dealership due to their bad policies and lack of available parts. I just want my warranty extended by the days the bakkie was in at the dealership.

    I spoke to the folks at the dealership. They are required to send proof of the broken turbo to fiat with pictures, but fiat knows they do not have stock of the parts needed for re-assembly. The dealership also did not want to assemble with old gaskets, as when the turbo blows because of used parts, I will be liable for the damage to the engine and not the warranty.

    Its been another two weeks that the dealership and I have been trying to get FCA to come out to have a look at the steering wobble issue.

    The warranty is now essentially over, although I reported the issue with the steering in JULY already. Few months ey...

    I'm at wits end. Do I wait for them to fix the small issues left, or do I just sell it? I also could not in good conscience sell a bakkie I know has issues to some poor sod. I'm really hoping fiat comes to the party on this one. Their poor service really puts a dampener on the experience.
    BMW X5 3.0d ---

    Vorige? FIAT Fullback 4x4, Wat 'n loutere stuk strooi voertuig en geen diens van FIAT af nie. Bly weg...

  2. #2
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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Ouch! Sorry to hear about all your troubles. Other than not liking the chrome bits on the Triton, why didn't you rather go for a proper Mitsu? I've added some black plastic here and there to break up the white and chrome on mine..
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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    I don't want to be that guy but how was buying a Fiat bakkie ever going to end well??

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Quote Originally Posted by Skylark View Post
    I don't want to be that guy but how was buying a Fiat bakkie ever going to end well??
    But aren't they essentially Tritons? Literally just with the badge changed? Serious question as I own the older generations. Maybe you just bought a dud?? I was once bought a Pajero Sport brand new which was Kuk in every way.

    But nothing can be done about the dealers, the Mitsu dealers are also terrible, but in your case it seems FIAT wins.

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    I would check Fiat SA's website for a suitable 2nd hand bakkie that meets your needs and trade it in. I would insist on trade value PLUS for the vehicle. I would also insist on a discount on the newer vehicle.
    Toyota Fortuner 2.8 GD-6 4x4 Auto

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Quote Originally Posted by Morne - Skip View Post
    But aren't they essentially Tritons? Literally just with the badge changed? Serious question as I own the older generations. Maybe you just bought a dud?? I was once bought a Pajero Sport brand new which was Kuk in every way.

    But nothing can be done about the dealers, the Mitsu dealers are also terrible, but in your case it seems FIAT wins.
    I'm not sure how much is Triton but you can probably be rest assured that any Fiat parts are pretty crp and that the general build will be lacking.

    The Uno seems to be the only modern Fiat they ever got really right, you still see them regularly on the road and in decent condition whereas much newer Fiat's are already well past their prime and just about ready for the dump, like the Fiat Palio and Doblo.

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Quote Originally Posted by Leeubok View Post
    Ouch! Sorry to hear about all your troubles. Other than not liking the chrome bits on the Triton, why didn't you rather go for a proper Mitsu? I've added some black plastic here and there to break up the white and chrome on mine..
    Having owned the colt for 10 years, and having dealt with mits' TERRIBLE service. I could not have imagined fiat could be worse. (yes, I know better now)

    It was the fine line between within budget with warranty and outside budget without warranty. Also, I have a FIAT tractor that has been working flawlessly for years!

    Its technically a Triton series 5, built on the same line, just as a variant. Did not think it would be slightly troublesome.

    Its still fixable though, fiat just need to want to.

    They cannot compete with the big guns if this is their attitude. They sell about six a month. They cannot afford to lose the other four clients they have.
    BMW X5 3.0d ---

    Vorige? FIAT Fullback 4x4, Wat 'n loutere stuk strooi voertuig en geen diens van FIAT af nie. Bly weg...

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Quote Originally Posted by Skylark View Post
    I don't want to be that guy but how was buying a Fiat bakkie ever going to end well??

    Its technically a triton series 5, just rebadged.
    BMW X5 3.0d ---

    Vorige? FIAT Fullback 4x4, Wat 'n loutere stuk strooi voertuig en geen diens van FIAT af nie. Bly weg...

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Quote Originally Posted by Caracal View Post
    I would check Fiat SA's website for a suitable 2nd hand bakkie that meets your needs and trade it in. I would insist on trade value PLUS for the vehicle. I would also insist on a discount on the newer vehicle.
    Could be an option, thanks!
    BMW X5 3.0d ---

    Vorige? FIAT Fullback 4x4, Wat 'n loutere stuk strooi voertuig en geen diens van FIAT af nie. Bly weg...

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Quote Originally Posted by Skylark View Post
    I'm not sure how much is Triton but you can probably be rest assured that any Fiat parts are pretty crp and that the general build will be lacking.

    The Uno seems to be the only modern Fiat they ever got really right, you still see them regularly on the road and in decent condition whereas much newer Fiat's are already well past their prime and just about ready for the dump, like the Fiat Palio and Doblo.

    Agreed, the interior is not fully mits. I will replace everything with mits parts as I go along.

    I also think, due to it being one of the first models of the, then, newer shape, not everything has been up to standard yet. The superseeding parts should be better quality in theory.
    BMW X5 3.0d ---

    Vorige? FIAT Fullback 4x4, Wat 'n loutere stuk strooi voertuig en geen diens van FIAT af nie. Bly weg...

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Got final confirmation from FCA. Basically got told I can go F myself. They do not care.

    Reason: We have no records of your car being in at the dealership.


    I'm taking this to the ombudsman.
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    Vorige? FIAT Fullback 4x4, Wat 'n loutere stuk strooi voertuig en geen diens van FIAT af nie. Bly weg...

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    You should. Some people just learn the hard way. Had to take a Volkswagen dealer to the Ombudsman once and it turned out to be a very successful exercise.
    Mitsubishi Pajero 3.2 D-ID GLX LWB

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    The ombudsman finally took on FIAT yesterday. Boy O boy did they spark. I am waiting for them to let me know what now.

    The ombudsman takes no stories. In the direct email to them, telling them, 10 business days for an answer or 10% of turnover or R1m fine if they don't comply.
    BMW X5 3.0d ---

    Vorige? FIAT Fullback 4x4, Wat 'n loutere stuk strooi voertuig en geen diens van FIAT af nie. Bly weg...

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Wow, I can't believe you're still not sorted! Glad to hear that Ombudsman is at least making them sit up and take notice!

    Is the bakkie running now? Or still at dealership? You certainly got a lemon here, I can't believe that all Fullbacks are this bad
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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Quote Originally Posted by Leeubok View Post
    Wow, I can't believe you're still not sorted! Glad to hear that Ombudsman is at least making them sit up and take notice!

    Is the bakkie running now? Or still at dealership? You certainly got a lemon here, I can't believe that all Fullbacks are this bad

    I speak to the service adviser there at least once a week. She says I am the only person with a problem. The others come in for services, and that's it. No problems whatsoever.

    Must be a lemon....

    It drives now, but nothing besides the turbo has been fixed.
    BMW X5 3.0d ---

    Vorige? FIAT Fullback 4x4, Wat 'n loutere stuk strooi voertuig en geen diens van FIAT af nie. Bly weg...

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Quote Originally Posted by Tr0jan View Post
    I speak to the service adviser there at least once a week. She says I am the only person with a problem. The others come in for services, and that's it. No problems whatsoever.

    Must be a lemon....

    It drives now, but nothing besides the turbo has been fixed.
    That's so unfortunate that you got THAT one..

    So what outcome are you hoping for from going to ombudsman? Do you want the dealer to take the vehicle back and reimburse you? Or just cover and fix all the issues? You probably don't have any trust in that vehicle or the brand, so I presume you'll sell it as soon as you can?
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    2014 Mitsubishi Pajero Sport 2.5 Auto 4x4
    1998 Mitsubishi Pajero SWB 3.0 V6 - SOLD
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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Quote Originally Posted by Leeubok View Post
    That's so unfortunate that you got THAT one..

    So what outcome are you hoping for from going to ombudsman? Do you want the dealer to take the vehicle back and reimburse you? Or just cover and fix all the issues? You probably don't have any trust in that vehicle or the brand, so I presume you'll sell it as soon as you can?
    Quite honestly, the mitsubishi base of the vehicle gives me trust. Mostly the reason I went for the tried and trusted 2.5 version and really doubt if it would leave me stranded.

    If they can fix the steering issue, which is my biggest gripe. I would keep the vehicle. I doubt if I would be fortunate enough to receive a new vehicle.
    BMW X5 3.0d ---

    Vorige? FIAT Fullback 4x4, Wat 'n loutere stuk strooi voertuig en geen diens van FIAT af nie. Bly weg...

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Quote Originally Posted by Tr0jan View Post
    The ombudsman finally took on FIAT yesterday. Boy O boy did they spark. I am waiting for them to let me know what now.

    The ombudsman takes no stories. In the direct email to them, telling them, 10 business days for an answer or 10% of turnover or R1m fine if they don't comply.
    Great News!!!
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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    For those who are not sure what we mean with the steering issue:

    (*This is not mine, but EXACTLY the same issue)

    https://imgur.com/SNUHAul



    Thanks Mitchtriton123 for uploading this video.
    BMW X5 3.0d ---

    Vorige? FIAT Fullback 4x4, Wat 'n loutere stuk strooi voertuig en geen diens van FIAT af nie. Bly weg...

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    Default Re: The Highs and Lows of owning a cheap Mitsubishi (FIAT)

    Update....

    The bakkie was at fiat menlyn for (another) two and a half weeks. They fixed a few things from their side on their account. Door trim, leaking window etc

    FIAT SA (FCA) refuses to fix the broken steering and clicking seat. They firstly said that the bakkie is out of warranty, however this was reported last year in July already, secondly that all fiats have a steering shake, because they found another one that shakes. NO, NO, they should not shake, the other one is broken too.

    The seat they are now refusing to replace as the bakkie is out of warranty, really? The seat that was agreed to be fixed while under warranty, and in four attempts they could not order the right seat? How can you decline now? You never fixed it...

    Is FIAT SA really in such a bad state? Hell, I feel bad if you bought a R1m+ Jeep from these circus performers.

    I let the ombudsman know that FCA has no intention to fix my vehicle. Lets see what happens.
    BMW X5 3.0d ---

    Vorige? FIAT Fullback 4x4, Wat 'n loutere stuk strooi voertuig en geen diens van FIAT af nie. Bly weg...

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