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2001 Mitsubishi Montero Review
Nicely designed SUV but engine needs more oomph.
Reviewed by Automotive on
The Mitsubishi Montero has been drastically redesigned for 2001. With vast improvements in seating, ride quality, exterior shape, and engine performance, the 2001 Mitsubishi Montero provides a luxury sport utility vehicle with off-road capability that still feels as comfortable as a sedan. One major area that still has room for improvement, however, remains the V-6 engine. More power under the hood would help the Montero compete with other SUVs in its class.
Mitsubishi definitely gets on the right path with the 2001 Montero redesign. This good-looking SUV has a lot going for it. If only a little power under the hood could be added to the mix, the Montero could become a class leader.
Engines: 3.5-liter V-6
Transmissions: four-speed automatic, five-speed automatic
Models: Mitsubishi Montero XLS, Mitsubishi Montero Limited
What isn’t new?! The 2001 Mitsubishi Montero provides a dramatically redesigned, luxury SUV. A full cosmetic overhaul, along with numerous changes under the hood, result in a more stylish, comfortable automobile. Some of the numerous improvements include a new frame, a more refined suspension, and ample interior room.
The most drastic element of the 2001 Montero’s redesign concerns the new shape. The old, boxy look disappears, with rounded edges and a lower profile softening up the SUV. The pronounced fenders and highly stylized front end recall the Toyota Land Cruiser. A new, unibody structure with an independent suspension for the front and rear sits under the redesigned shell. The overhauled rack-and-pinion steering makes driving around town easy. Visibility in all directions looks excellent.
Passenger space increases for 2001. Total cargo volume totals 82 cubic feet, allowing much more space in all directions for passengers in the front and middle seats. The third row still feels somewhat cramped, with only 19.4 inches of legroom. But with the option to fold the third seat down and allow for more cargo space, this hardly seems like a deal breaker.
The transmission in the new Montero has also been redesigned, with the base XLS housing a four-speed automatic. The Limited comes equipped with a five-speed manumatic transmission. This transmission allows for upshifts and downshifts by placing the shifter in a separate gate. The Limited also comes with Mitsubishi's ActiveTrac four-wheel-drive system.
The 2001 Montero’s list of features has also expanded. The base XLS includes standard air-conditioning, power mirrors and windows, remote keyless entry, tilt steering, front and rear cup holders, an AM/FM/CD stereo, and a security system. The XLS also benefits from improved anti-lock brakes and electronic brake force distribution. The Limited adds a leather interior with wood trim, heated front seats, an LCD display, and a sunroof.
The 2001 Mitsubishi Montero actually grows slightly longer and wider than previous models, but the new rounded style makes it appear svelte. The body overhang has been reduced overall and the height shrunk to 73 inches. The tailgate holds a full-size spare tire.
The 2001 Montero seats five passengers comfortably and holds up to seven adults. The inside it uses two front bucket seats, a three-person middle bench that folds down for additional cargo space, and a removable, two-seat rear row that folds flat to the floor when not in use. Almost all of the interior dimensions increase on the 2001 Mitsubishi Montero, including total cargo volume, which tops out at 82 cubic feet.
Performance & Handling
The new and improved 2001 Mitsubishi Montero comes with a 3.5-liter V-6 with 200 horsepower at 5000 rpm and 235 lb-ft of torque at 3500 rpm. That provides plenty of horses for running errands around town, but once the Montero gets loaded with seven people or hooked to a trailer, the lack of power might become problematic. The XLS has a four-speed automatic transmission, and the Limited uses a new, five-speed Sportronic automatic that allows manual gear changes. The four-wheel-drive system for the XLS offers part-time use, in case you come across wet roads. The Limited comes with ActiveTrac, which it always employs. It distributes power between the front and rear wheels as needed for traction.
The 2001 Mitsubishi Montero’s safety features include four-wheel anti-lock brakes, electronic brake force distribution, child seat anchors, a rear center lap belt, a security system, front and rear ventilated disc brakes, rear-door child safety locks, an ignition disable switch, and dual front and side-impact airbags.
EPA Fuel Economy
- Handsome profile
- Off-road capability
- Plenty of cargo space
You Won't Like
- V-6 engine too small
- No optional V-8
Nicely designed SUV but engine needs more oomph.
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