NHTSA — Engine And Engine Cooling: Exhaust System Problems


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
135,750 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2002 Mitsubishi Lancer exhaust system problems

exhaust system problem

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2002 Mitsubishi Lancer Owner Comments

problem #6

Jun 302011

Lancer 4-cyl

  • 122,592 miles


Own a 2002 Mitsubishi Lancer, code P0421, showed after failure of emissions test. I called Mitsubishi motors after finding this code was for a recall in Aug. 05 emr-05-001/003, an emission recall on the catalytic converter, "may have experienced damage to the warm-up cat converter and subsequent illumination of the service engine soon lamp." Mitsubishi informed me this recall was an extended warranty recall to replace the catalytic converter but that it expired in 2006, also, that it extended the warranty to 8 yrs or 100,000 mi. I explained to them I had not been notified of any recalls on this car. They informed me it was my fault for not informing them I was the owner, so I could be notified. However, NHTSA says owners are notified through registration records. They later stated they had sent me a recall notice in Aug. 2005. I never received a recall notice on any of the three recalls for my car. This car hit 100,000 mi on 5/10/2008 which was before the 8yr limit. The service engine light intermittently started to flash 2/5/2010, at 122592 miles, still before the 8yr limit. We thought it was the gas cap not screwed on all the way because it didn't illuminate continuously until 06/2011. Mitsubishi has refused to replace the cat, because the car is now over 100,000 miles and the 8yr limit, of the extended warranty. We have performed a tune-up of the engine, oil change, belt replacement, valve gasket replacement, and fluid flush to help remedy the situation. The fan control, and PCM reflash were performed per the other two recalls for this vehicle.

- Vancouver, WA, USA

problem #5

Jan 162011

Lancer 4-cyl

  • 93,000 miles
My service engine soon light turned on and I went to auto zone and got a code : P0421 oem brand: Domestic definition: Catalyst efficiency low bank 1 explanation: The oxygen sensors monitor the catalytic converters ability to store oxygen. Probable causes: 1- catalytic converter defective (failure possibly due to #2, 3, or 4.) 2- engine misfire or running condition. 3- large vacuum leak. 4- engine oil leakage into exhaust-valve guide seals, piston rings. I called mitsu and they said since my car is at 93500 that it would not be covered...that I would have to pay....my car is not accelerating as it was suppose too...alot of people have had same problem....after 90 miles...this is ridiculous.

- Allentown, PA, USA

problem #4

Jul 152004


  • 97,000 miles
Defective cat. Recall is still open but Mitsubishi refuses to fix the problem. Dealers are instructed to clear the code (reflash PCM) but light will come back because defective cat needs to be replaced. This is the original cause of the recall. Vehicle is out of warrenty, so the will not replace the cat. If the cat was still under warrenty and the check engine light was on, they would replace it. We are the original owners and never recieved the recall notice. We have spent a fortune trying to get the light off in order to get through inspection, not knowing of the source and the recall. What is the point of the recall if they don't fix the problem? they just cover it up by reflashing the computer. The fact is, our car has a defective cat. We were never notified of the recall. We cannot pass inspection without replacing the defective cat that caused a recall.vehicle's engine over-compensates for bad O2 reading causing sudden acceleration. Mitsubishi refuses to fix the problem.

- Hammonton, NJ, USA

problem #3

Sep 052007

Lancer 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 200,000 miles


The contact owns a 2002 Mitsubishi Lancer. While driving approximately 65 mph on normal road conditions, the check engine warning indicator illuminated on the instrument panel without warning. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer for diagnostic testing and they stated that the failure was related to the catalytic converter. The vehicle has not been repaired. The failure mileage was 200,000 and current mileage was 247,000. Updated 03/09/09. The consumer stated before the recall was performed she didn't have any problems. The consumer stated the dealer unnecessary repairs to her vehicle and would like reimbursement. Updated 03/11/09.

- Cathedral City, CA, USA

problem #2

Sep 222007


  • 207,908 miles
1/ at about 207000 miles check engine light came on. Dealers diagnosis and 2 other repair shops : catalytic converter has to be replaced. Cost for this job: $ 1500. I did not replace catalytic converter and was performing normally. This happened first time in my life, that catalytic converter gives up during the life of the car. 2/ at 246,570 miles while vehicle was on, would not go into gear. Dealers diagnosis: Car needs clutch assembly and resurface flywheel and clutch slave cylinder. Cost for this repair: About 1,200 plus tax again 1st time happened to me that car needs clutch assembly work with slave cylinder during the live of the car. 4/ while they checked the car for gear problem they recommended to me to replace timing belt: Cost $ 723 plus tax and replacing valve cover gasket: Cost $ 264 plus tax I believe they ripping people off, because while replacing timing belt they have to remove valve cover and they should not charge 2X for removing valve cover. This was estimated by Mitsubishi-Mazda dealership in san bernardino, ca. I'm questioning their prices and ability to properly diagnose and do this repairs based on the statements they made and their prices. After every time this car is serviced at Mitsubishi dealer this car have more problems: Screws missing, broken parts, engine check light comes on. I need from Mitsubishi motor of North America Inc. List of good repair facilities where the car can be repaired not sabotaged, where they have knowledgeable technician not monkeys. I had a few cars, but never happened that catalytic converter or clutch needed to be replaced during the life of the car, or I had to spent few thousand of $$ for repairs while maintaining the car properly during it's life.

- Cathedral City, CA, USA

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problem #1

Mar 242007

Lancer 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 94,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Mitsubishi Lancer. The contact stated that the vehicle idled above the normal idle rate. The rpms increased, similar to as if the accelerator pedal was being depressed. The contact stated that the idling was a recurring failure that usually took place at lower speeds. When the vehicle was cranked or low on fuel the air conditioning powered on automatically. Also, the vehicle attempted to accelerate automatically when idling, and the brake pedal was depressed. Exhaust fumes entered the vehicle intermittently. In addition, the contact stated that the accelerator pedal was sticking on occasion. The current and failure mileage were 94000.

- Jacksonville, AL, USA

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