Used 1999 Mitsubishi Montero Sport Review

Edmunds expert review

What's new for 1999

A new Limited model joins the Montero Sport lineup and with it comes a powerful new V6 engine.

Vehicle overview

Mitsubishi was in the vanguard at the beginning of the sport-utility boom. Way back in 1989, when the Explorer was yet to be introduced and the Grand Cherokee was little more than scribbles in a designer's notebook, the Montero had already evolved into a wonderfully practical four-door design that offered excellent utility and go-anywhere capability. As the years passed, however, the Montero moved further and further up-market as Mitsubishi lavished additional equipment and expensive gee-whiz components on its only sport-ute. Today, the Montero's price starts above $31,000.

Realizing that they were losing sales because of this high price, Mitsubishi penned a newly-shaped truck, placed it on a proven platform and came up with a not-very-original name for a smaller, less-expensive SUV in 1997-the Montero Sport. The Sport shares a frame with the larger Montero, which is good news for those seeking off-road capability, but it is shorter overall due to decreased front and rear overhangs. The Montero Sport's cabin holds five passengers instead of seven but the Sport's cargo space actually surpasses that of the full-size Montero.

This year, the Montero Sport is available in four trim levels: ES, LS, XLS and the all-new Limited. Each trim level comes with two- or four-wheel drive except the ES, which is only available as a 2WD model. The ES is powered by a four-cylinder 134-horsepower engine, but not many people opt for this value leader due to its weak engine and sparse equipment. Recently, the most popular model has been the LS 4WD automatic. This year, the LS also gets alloy wheels, black fender flares, side steps, cruise control, AM/FM/CD audio system, and power windows, door locks and mirrors as standard equipment. This truck, as well as the XLS model, includes a more powerful 3.0-liter SOHC V6 engine. Be sure to check out the acceleration, though; we were disappointed by this V6's lack of oomph.

The new Limited trim level promises to please many and includes the 3.5-liter SOHC 24-valve V6 engine that also powers the larger Montero. Other standard features on the Limited include unique chrome grille and front bumper with integrated fog lamps, integrated side steps, leather seat trim with removable rear seat cushion, antilock brakes, power windows/door locks/sunroof, Infinity premium sound system and a security system with remote keyless entry. The Limited 4WD version adds a locking rear differential, rear heaters, heated outside mirrors and multimeter with compass, exterior thermometer and an oil pressure gauge/voltmeter.

Available in 1999 on all Montero Sports is a new automatic transmission, new rear bumper design, new roof rack design, and three new colors: Cambridge Red Pearl (replaces Phoenix Red), New Zealand Green Pearl (replaces Belgium Green Pearl and Ozark Green Metallic), and Royal Blue Pearl.

Edmunds expert review process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.