Which SUV is cheaper to maintain: Fortuner or Montero Sport?

Our tech guru has the answer
by Ferman Lao | Nov 20, 2012

We just bought a 2.5-liter non-VGT Mitsubishi Montero Sport with manual transmission. I'm just wondering now which SUV is cheaper to maintain: our newly bought vehicle or the Toyota Fortuner with 2.5-liter D-4D engine. We considered the Innova and the Fortuner but got the Montero Sport instead because it is cheaper and has a powerful engine. But I want to know which vehicle is more cost-efficient to maintain? And what are the common issues or problems of the Montero Sport?

Gregory Luiz Paule


Hello, Gregory. The maintenance cost will be about the same for most modern diesels--be it one that uses a VGT or one that employs standard wastegate turbo. In any case, owners of EFI (electronic fuel injection) diesel vehicles should be more conscientious about where they get their fuel as fuel quality and contamination will cause the premature failure of some of the critical components of the engine. The fuel pump and injectors on modern diesels aren't cheap to replace should they fail.

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I've been seeing a number of EGR (exhaust gas recirculation) valves failing on modern diesels--similar failure rate among all brands. When this happens to modern EFI turbodiesel, a malfunction indicator light or check engine light comes on and poor engine performance is evident. I would attribute this primarily to the harsh driving environment the vehicles are subjected to. Harsh environment is the stop-and-go everyday traffic we all encounter with most of the trips being less than 20km in distance and involving long idling periods.

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I would advise that you occasionally go out on the open road for an "Italian tune-up." Fully synthetic oil is also recommended during oil change, including oil filter intervals being 5,000km or every three to four months, whichever comes first. A more frequent fuel-filter change might also be a good idea.

Best regards,

Ferman Lao
Technical Editor

Do car problems keep you awake at night? Send questions to topgear@summitmedia.com.ph.

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