Buyer's Guide

Mitsubishi Shogun Gen 3 & Gen 4

These guides are from our experiences of working on vehicles and should not be considered all inclusive or exhaustive.  Bear Tough provides these to help inform your choice of vehicle but we always recommend that you do a full vehicle check and get an independant inspection before purchase.

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Manufacturer: Mitsubishi Motors

Also called: Pajero, Montero

Production: 1981 – 2021 (Gen 3 2000-2007, Gen 4 2007 – 2021)

Check MOT and RECALL status:

Ensure bonnet and fuel filler cap open via the levers under the steering column.
Plastic trim on wheel arches can hide rot, if there’s any sign of bubbling or rust around the trims then they’ll be rotten through in the areas hidden.
Wing mirrors are operated either with the small button next to the mirror adjuster on the left hand dash, or by pressing the key fob 3 times.
All 4 doors can suffer corrosion on the upper areas around the windows. Rots from the inside out so if evident can be an extensive repair.
Check alignment of body panels. Gaps should be even all round.
Open rear wheel cover (two bolts behind little panels in the inside of the back door, uses the wheel changing tools. The frame holding the plastic trim/number plate/rear fog light rots through and is difficult to find replacements.
Rear lights – sidelights and indicators are only in the lower rear bumper lights, not in the rear clusters although this can be retrofitted.


Make sure all seat adjustments work and that 2nd row seats can be rolled forwards.
Check functioning of infotainment system.
All areas of the dash illuminate apart from the mirror adjustment switches – it’s a quirk.
“Scene” lighting illuminates the footwells and gear stick area – low brightness orange LED’s.
Check operation of all steering wheel controls. If any don’t work or are intermittant indicates a new clockspring is required.
Check operation of all windows.
Centre armrest has different buttons to open lid, open main compartment and to slide padded lid forward/backward.
Handbrake should easily hold the car with the transmission in neutral (in park, the transmission locks stopping the vehicle from moving).

Standard Equipment
Low profile red bottle jack
Bottle jack handle – 2 part black.  One section pulls out from inside the other retained by a spring clip.
Locking wheel nut key
Wheel nut brace
Removeable tow bar if fitted.
3rd Row Seat
3rd Row Seat headrests x2
Removeable panels in boot – hinge covers for 3rd row seatt.

Check thoroughly for corrosion
Side steps are usual areas for rot and rust through after 6-8 years if not regularly treated.
Fuel filler/breather pipework is behind plastic trim on the drivers rear wheel arch. Removal of wheel and trim required to check condition and if this isn’t done prior to purchse should be done asap as these can corrode through and contaminate fuel which can lead to fuel pump failure.
Check prescence of factory bash plates.

Wheels & Tyres
Standard size is 265/60/r18
Usual Upgrade Size is 265/65/r18
All wheels and tyres (including spare) must match in size, make and wear. Differing makes and sizes can cause error codes to be thrown by the transmission.

Pistons seizing in calipers is a common issue for all 4 corners. Check that no wheel rim is warmer than the others after the test drive and that the vehicle comes to a stop in a straight line on heavy braking.

Test Drive
Engine should start quickly with no revving or smoke from exhaust.
Gear changes should be smooth and almost imperceptable.
Drive should be smooth without any knocking sounds from suspension.
If fuel level is just under full, a “knock” sensation/sound can sometimes be felt under the drivers feet. This is normal due to the placement and shape of the fuel tank.
It can take time for the vehicle to get upto temperature, especially in cooler temperatures as it’s a big lazy diesel engine.
Check the operation of the brakes. If a buzzer is heard on use of the brakes this indicates a problem with the HBB motor/accumulator and would need replacement.
Change between 2H and 4H during the drive (but never 4HLc or 4LLc unless off road on low traction surfaces).
To test the manual mode, whilst in Drive, push the gear lever across to the right to activate manual mode. Pushing the gearstick forward and backward will allow you to manually select gears. You’ll see the selected gear on the dash.

Transfer Case/Front Diff Check
These parts are very strong and rarely suffer from catastrophic failures. However, due to lack of use the super select system that comprises of vacuum relays/actuators/switches can fail.
2H – rear wheels driven only (2 rear wheel green lights on dash).
4H – rear and front wheels driven (4 wheel green lights on dash).
4HLc – rear and front wheels driven, centre diff locked (4 wheel green lights on dash) and orange centre diff light)
4LLc – rear and front wheels driven, centre diff locked, low range gears (4 wheel green lights on dash) and orange centre diff light and LLC illuminated).

You can change between 2H and 4H from stationary upto approx 60mph. Green wheel lights will blink on the dash until they fully engage.
To change into 4HLc or 4LLc car must be stationary and in neutral. The car must not be driven in these modes unless you are on a low friction surface.

Cycle the transfer box through all four modes and check that all lights illuminate on the dash as per the above. If any lights flash or at any time all the lights extinguish and the centre diff light starts flashing this shows an issue with the transmission. If it goes into this fault mode return the lever to 2H. The lights may remain and needs to be plugged into a diagnostic machine to be checked.

Standard service intervals are 12 months or 12.5k miles.
Major service items are valve adjustments, check if these have been completed.
Automatic gearbox should be serviced after 60k miles if not yet serviced (rarely has been and shouldn’t cause issues if it hasn’t but is definitely worth doing).

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