A few potential faults on the Mitsubishi Triton 2.5 Diesel - Steves Auto Clinic (2023)

What can be expected from a second-hand Mitsubishi Triton?

Do you own a Mitsubishi Triton 2.5 diesel? Do you have your eyes on a humble second hand Triton in this range? If so, then the following may be relevant to you.

The Triton roamed this planet from as early as 1978, and since then they went through many facelifts and engine-lifts… The earliest versions were not as powerful as that of the current generation. Your everyday Triton 2.5 litre diesel produce 100 kW and 314 Nm. This is actually pretty average, compared to other vehicles of the same size, but nonetheless, the Triton engines are renowned for their longevity. They are very stable and due to their long history, are reliable in many instances. All in all, the Triton have a good reputation. Still, it is a vehicle, vehicles undergo wear and tear and vehicles have issues.

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Some issues you may experience

The Triton may have been around for quite a while, and yes, it is not your typical class-leader of a bakkie, but it is reliable and, to say the least, economical to a decent degree. Nonetheless, it does have its issues, just as most any other vehicles have. Whether you possess a Triton, or have your eyes on a new or second hand one, then it may be wise to be aware of these issues. Knowledge regarding them may assist you in identifying issues beforehand, and what do I always say: prevention is at the end of the day, much better than cure (what else did you think?)

Steering wheel vibrations

Let us start with vibrations in the steering wheel. You experience unnecessary but at times also excessive vibrations in the steering. What can be the cause? Well, we hope it was not due to the corrugated road you were driving on… When such vibrations occur (and you are not on a corrugated road…), you may be told that it is the shocks or the suspension. It may indeed be the problem, but it is worthwhile to first have the steering column checked. There are usually two bolts that secure the column just underneath the dashboard. These may become slightly loose, and may require tightening, or it may even be that the entire steering column requires replacement. That being said, a vibration in the component responsible for steering an entire mass of metal and plastic, is not safe, so have it checked and fixed.

Die while idling

As a Triton owner, you may also experience that the vehicle just dies while idling. When random idling issues such as this cross your path, you may wonder whether it is electrical or mechanical in origin. Well, it may be both. Check the guide vanes on the turbo and ensure that it is not clogged with a build-up of carbon. The build-up of carbon in some components can cause many headaches for vehicle owners. Check the turbo diaphragm too and ensure that the exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) vale is clean. You may, at the same time, consider checking all vacuum pipes on the inlet. The pressure sensor for the diesel to the injectors may also be a cause for the idling to cut out. Finally, have the engine control unit (ECU) cleared and the injectors recalibrated, this may resolve the issue as well. The most important point of this discussion, is to address this issue, you definitely do not want to be left stranded and then blame the vehicle, now would you?

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Gear changing difficulty

Any problems changing gears? If you experience any difficulty in changing gears, whether it be that it grinds during gear change, or does not want to go smoothly into gear, then you should consider to have a reputed service centre, such as ourselves, have a look at the clutch plate, pressure plate and bearings. A clutch, just as any other moving part, is a “wearing” part, in other words, friction will make it wear out. Some clutches may last you more than a 100 000 km, some may not. If you experience frequent clutch problems on the Triton, you may consider replacing the clutch with a heavy duty clutch, but that is a choice entirely left up to you.

Loss in power

Have you ever felt a sudden and immense loss in power while driving? There are some reasons why this may happen. Can it be due to a clogged fuel filter or maybe the actuator acting up? Maybe it is even due to a failing turbo! Do yourself a favour and inspect the pipes and clamps on the turbo itself. Also ensure that the actuator on the turbo is opening the dump valve on the exhaust; you will need someone to assist you in this regard, except if you are fast enough to rev the engine, jump out and check if the actuator opens up… I thought so! The suction control valve may also cause such a drop in power. Remember that the suction control valve is responsible for controlling fuel pressure in common rail engines. Do I need say more?

Turbo lagging

Apart from a sudden loss in power, what are you to do when you experience a weak throttle response? Now look, the 2.5 diesel is not a V6, let us make that very clear, but yes, the 2.5 do have some “turbo lag”. If (when) you pull away, or simply want to accelerate, and you do not get the power you think you should get, then again, have a look at the control valve. A suggestion you may take to heart, and one that many Triton 2.5 diesel owners did, is to chip that vehicle. So what do I mean by chip? Let us have a look.


Power gains

If you for one moment think that the power and torque outputs on your Triton is insufficient to your taste, don’t change vehicles, have it chipped. The everyday Triton (as referred to in the beginning), with its 100 kW and 314 Nm power output, shows a gain in power and torque to respectively 115 kW and 365 Nm after installing a Unichip. That is indeed some good gains. How do we know that? Because we tested it, time and time again, that is what we do, we back our claims by scientific proof. Just click here to see the gains on a variety of other vehicles.

It should also be mentioned that there is a fluctuation of factory produced engine outputs for the Triton, which can be as low as 55 kW & 142 Nm for the non-turbo engines, to as high as 131 kW and 400 Nm for the intercooled 3rd generation variable geometry turbo engines. Whichever is the case, it is safe to say that you can expect a 15 percent increase in gains when you chip your vehicle.

Don’t fear – parts will be here…

A final thought, you may have heard that Nissan acquired an equity stake of 34% in Mitsubishi in 2016. By doing so, Mitsubishi became part of the international alliance with Nissan and Renault. The direct outcome of this alliance is the availability of parts, and in the near future the sharing of parts. Yes, sharing! The latest Triton already imitates the mechanics of the Nissan Navara, it is only a matter of time before they share parts as well. The sharing of parts has been confirmed by the chief operations officer of Mitsubishi Motors, and the reason for this is done from a cost competitive point of view and not a product competitive one (caradvice, 2017).

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That wraps up our discussion regarding the Triton and some of its possible issues. Now let us presume that you do experience any of these (or any other) Triton issues, what will be the best advice we can give? SAC Service Centre – that is our advice. We are a reputable service, repair and vehicle performance enhancement centre with more than 35 years of experience in the automotive industry. We have qualified personnel, mechanics and technicians, and state of the art equipment to diagnose and fix your vehicle. Do not hesitate, do not be in two minds, there is only one way and that is the highway to your nearest SAC Service Centre. Contact us TODAY.

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Sources consulted during the writing of this article:

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  • Caradvice. 2017. Mitsubishi Triton and Nissan Navara co-development plans already in the works. Online available at: https://www.caradvice.com.au/558281/mitsubishi-triton-and-nissan-navara-co-development-plans-already-in-the-works/. Accessed on 2 October 2018.

Within the above article, potential problems, causes and fixes have been identified as founded on the experience of vehicle owners and repairers, online sources such as discussion blogs, technical service bulletins and SAC experience. This information is provided solely for reference purposes. SAC strictly instruct readers that only properly qualified individuals should carry out repairs and/or modifications on your vehicles. It should also be made clear that the number of times an item is identified within this discussion should by no way be seen as an indicator of a model’s reliability or the frequency with which they may occur. Two of the exact same vehicles, owned by tow entirely different owners, driven in entirely different ways and on different terrains, and looked after in their own unique ways, will each behave differently. As mentioned, this information is provided solely for reference purposes but we hope – in the process of doing so – to empower you with relevant information which may enable you to make informative decisions whenever you experience any of the mentioned setbacks.


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