Long-term update: 2010 Mitsubishi Pajero

Long-term update: 2010 Mitsubishi Pajero

It has been a while since we last posted an update on our Mitsubishi Pajero, simply because there was nothing much to report about it. Apart from some minor repairs, all of which arose as a result of frequent off-roading excursions, absolutely nothing has gone wrong with the vehicle as it clocks over 30,000 km on the odometer.

During the 25,000 km servicing, which was done from a trusted garage in Umm Ramoul, Dubai, we had them eliminate an annoying creaking noise coming from the steering wheel every time we turned it. It appeared that the steering-wheel noise was due to the excessive desert sand that got collected in the steering coupling bush, which might have happened while we were attempting to recover our Pajero once when it was stuck in deep sand, with windows open. We also had them take a look into a minor rattle that came from the centre dash, which they attempted to solve by tightening the dashboard joint screws. There was a faint, but noticeable grinding noise that appeared to be coming in from the rear-left brakes, only with the application of parking brakes. The noise was heard while the parking brakes were being applied, and when one gets off the vehicle with parking brakes applied. The garage personnel just cleaned the brake calipers and other internal components, and once again got to remove truck loads of sand trapped inside these, which solved the issue. Along with the 5,000 km Mobil oil and filter replacement, the whole service cost us Dhs 325.

Ever since we bought the Mitsubishi Pajero, off-road excursions became a frequent thing – especially dune bashing. The Pajero also happened to be the back-up vehicle, for our off-road test of the all-new 2012 Toyota Land Cruiser 4.6-litre V8. While the Pajero is very capable in handling the loose stuff, the difference between Mitsubishi’s flexing unibody and Toyota’s rigid body-on-frame is very apparent. While ascending through a tricky part of a dune during another off-road event organized by a well-known off-road group based in Dubai, we hit a firm sand bump on the path and the Pajero had all its four wheels in the air for a brief moment, before landing hard on its skid plate. The metal skid-plate proved to be strong as it resisted the crash-landing well enough, but still got slightly pushed and bent inwards.

The plastic lip on the rear bumper protruding outwards is a common sight after almost every off-road session that we have with the Pajero, and we just push it back in place every time it happened. After several such occurrences, the two flimsy metal clips supporting the plastic lip finally gave up and broke off the metal plate that supports the rear-steps, during our most recent off-road session. Even the plastic brackets that held the plastic lip in place against the bumper, were damaged.

So for the 30,000 km service, we got the front skid-plate back in shape, and got the broken metal clips in the rear, welded back on to the metal plate supporting the rear-steps. The damaged plastic brackets were glued back, but it does not appear to hold the plastic lip in perfection anymore. A colleague’s child, who had accompanied us for a picnic, had successfully managed to pull out the rear a/c control module, damaging the locking clips and brackets in the process. The garage guys attempted to replace the clips and then fix the module back in place, but in vain as the controls were still loose, so they glued it back in place. The repair works, 10,000 km Mobil synthetic oil and replacement filters cost us Dhs 750 altogether.

Another discovery which we made is the increased rolling effect felt by the passengers in the second and third row seats, in comparison to the driver and front passenger, especially when the vehicle is driven in two-wheel-drive mode around the corners and in roundabouts. This phenomenon may be attributed to the body flex, typical of a unibody construction.

As a daily-runner, the Mitsubishi Pajero fares well enough. Average fuel-burn rate, as registered by the trip-computer, soars at an awful 15.9 litres / 100 kms, even though that includes our frequent off-road runs. But that said, we have seen relatively better fuel-efficiency numbers in a 4.0-litre Toyota Land Cruiser Prado. The air conditioner in the Mitsubishi Pajero has no issues coping up with the increasing outside temperature, even as the mercury soared to a high 43 degrees. Last but not least, we do intend to buy a rear bull-bar in order to avoid breaking the rear bumper components again in the future.

Original Mileage When Bought: 8,880 km
Latest Mileage To Date: 30,500 km
Latest Average Fuel Economy: 15.9 litres/100 km
Cost of Latest Problems: Dhs 400
Cost of Latest Maintenance: Dhs 350

Total Non-Fuel Running Cost Since Bought: Dhs 1,320

Read all 2010 Mitsubishi Pajero long-term updates

What do you think?




    • There is a workshop called Al Mirath auto repairing in Umm Ramoul. Their works are very professional, fast and cheap too.

    • Author

      The “trusted garage” I have mentioned in this review, is the one which Rahul just said..Its Al Mirath auto repairing in Umm Ramoul, behind Ali Dhaher something!

  2. Al Mirath Auto Repair Services, behind Bin Dhaher(dealer for Seat n Skoda) Service center, Umm Ramool, Dubai.

  3. I just came back from alhabtoor motors, and I did test-drive the 3.5 full options, which cost 126k, but I didn’t like it that much, there were lot of road noise (even more noise than my sports lexus) and the engine is too weak and noisy when flooring the throttle.
    And the 3.8 version is for 134k which comes with all the 3.5 options adding rr dif lock, more gears and larger rims.
    Vivek, which one you think is better to take 3.5 or 3.8, I can afford the 8K extra, but what about the long run and fuel economy, and does that 3.8 feels slow too?

    • I would recommend the 3.8L then..

      Even though the 3.5L has good initial kick compared to the 3.8L, the latter is quicker to 100 kph as the 3.5L just dies after about 50-60kph. But compared to the Prado and Fortuner from Toyota, the 3.8L does not feel very fast. The extra gear does allow the 3.8L to cruise at fairly lower revs, but I do not think that the fuel efficiency is significantly better than the 3.5L; as far as I remember, it is roughly the same as 3.5L. Off-road, even if both vehicles perform great, i feel more comfortable with the 3.5L as it has noticeably better low-end kick than the 3.8L; however, the 3.8L comes with diff-locks which the 3.5 doesn’t have.

      To summarize, if you have that extra 8k and require better on-road performance, 3.8L is the one to go for. 3.5L is the choice for only those on the lookout for a good off-roader while suffering from a strained budget.

  4. Vivek, thanks for this nice update, again. Really enjoy reading them. Very honest and well written. I tried the Pajero a few times when I was looking for a 4×4 and I share your opinion in terms of performance and all that.
    PS: I dont think you’ve done anything dumb. Change that title pls.

    • You will regret the last part once you see his performance in the desert. I haven’t seen it but heard it from his Desert Navigator.

    • ^^Thnx for tat last line Jones πŸ™‚ …din know that story was still making rounds…lol!

      @Mitch: thanks buddy πŸ™‚ …

  5. Hai Vivek Bro..let me say I’m a proud owner of Pajero 2010 3.0 ltr model and I should say so…after this long I find that I had made the right choice in Buying Pajero without any second thoughts even though had a crush on Prado..

    Bro,I have few queries and I hope you and Rahul can help me in this.

    a)My Pajero is a base model version where I really miss the audio effect.Do I have an option to change my existing audio sys(which I don’t know the brand name-default one which Pajero provides) to a Rock Ford audio system?

    b)I have seen few Pajero’s on road having the head light in LED lights.I want to change my Lights to LED. will it cause any problem to my Pajero on the long run?

    Hope you 2 can help me on this queries and please do post more on Pajero reviews.


    • a) You can fit any branded or non-branded system in any car; its just that you have to shell out enough money for it all. Going for the original Rockford Fosgate system, which is found in the high-end Mitsubishis, might prove a lot expensive.

      b) I did not quite get your question, but I am assuming you are talking about the HID Xenon lights. You can get aftermarket HID conversion kits for this, and it does not cost much; neither will it create problems. However, the RTA might not like all that. If you wish to, you may approach Al Habtoor and ask them if they would retrofit the basic Pajero with original HID headlamp units; if they do, it is again going to be expensive like hell.

  6. Guys could you please advise wich 4 wheel between Xterra and Pajero both 2009 model i shoul buy considering the following fact
    who has better milage
    who has best resale value
    who has less maintenance

    • Which Pajero are you talking about, the 3.5 or 3.8?

      Nevertheless, both xterra n pajero drink lots of fuel, resale value should be roughly the same, and maintenance cost will be a tad higher for the Mitsubishi, owing to slightly costlier spares. However, the Xterra is much more powerful on the road and is better suited for regular off-road excursions. The Pajero is much more smoother and comfortable on road and has an extra row of seats.

  7. Hi Vivek,

    I’m looking at buying my 1st car and i was comparing Honda CRV 2012 & Pajero 3.5L 3 door version. Both the cars seems to be at the same price tag( basic model)but Pajero is a 4×4 while CRV isn’t. i’m not planning to do any off roading but was thinking a car with this facility doesn’t hurt. CRV 2012 has been voted as one of the best SUV in 2012 by most north american magzines. so i’m not sure which one to go for ? what would you recommend.

    thanks for your feedback

    • well..CR-V would be more practical if you do not plan to do off-road excursions. For one, CR-V is way more smooth and comfortable than the Pajero; in fact, CR-V is one of the smoothest and most comfy CUV I have come across. It has much more quieter interior and is fairly fuel efficient, while the 2.4L engine turns out to have adequate power in all situations. Furthermore, the CR-V has more versatile space than a 3-door Pajero.
      On the other hand, Pajero is very much off-road capable, even as it is more thirstier and does not ride as smooth as a CR-V. If you have no intentions of off-roading, I would recommend the CR-V over the 3-door Pajero any day.

  8. thanks Vivek for your feedback

  9. I m planning to buy my first 4×4 and narowed my search to 3.5, 5 door pajero as it seems to have something with in my budget as its costing 126k for top of range.
    I own a Civic right now and hav no experiece of 4×4 but like quiet drives with less road and tyres noise. Also like long drives sometimes to Oman & Saudi Arabia.
    Can you guide me and suggest any other option in this price range? do u think i have made the right choice?

    • The drive would probably not be as quiet as your Civic. I have taken my Pajero to Oman several times and once to Saudi border. Though the suspensions are on the firmer side, it is still comfortable – but mind you that the full-option model comes with bigger rims, which may degrade the smoothness. Tyre and wind noise creeps in after 100-110 kph, but not intrusive enough to be disturbing.

      If you do not intend to off-road, there are much smoother and quieter alternatives, such as the Honda CR-V, new Ford Explorer and the Hyundai Santa-Fe. As for proper off-roaders, take a look at the Toyota Fortuner V6. I have not driven the new one, but judging the older model it is more fuel efficient and a tad more quiet, though not as comfortable.

      Pajero is a good choice, but whether it suits you or no is entirely personal. So I do recommend that you Visit al habtoor and test drive the Pajero thoroughly; ask them for a half an hour drive or so, and make sure you get to drive it at highway speeds, and over some rough surfaces too. Then make a decision. Good luck!

  10. I am going to buy a used pajero. Not sure yet 2009 model or 2010 model. Can one of you please explain me what is the differnce between 2009 model and 2010 model. Many Thanks

  11. well, the real difference lies in the base engine. while the base engine in the 2008 and 2009 used to be a 3.0-litre unit, it is a 3.5-litre unit in the 2010, 2011 and 2012 models. Other than that and the newly designed alloys for 2010, there are no differences. The 3.5-litre unit is slightly more powerful than the 3.0-litre engine, but it does make some noticeable improvements in both on and off-road performance.

  12. Thanks Vivek.
    I saw one pajero yesterday 2009, 3.5 lwb top of the range one and 57,000km. I think I will go for that. But apart from the engine, is there in difference in exterior and interior design?

    • no changes in exterior and interior designs..but are you sure its a 2009 model? or is it a 2010 model bought in 2009?..as far as I know, 3.5L engine was introduced as the base engine only from 2010 models, which went on sale in 2009.

  13. Hi Vivek,

    Yes I saw one Tasjeel Passing paper it says it’s a 2009 model..

  14. Dear Vivek,
    Thanks for your advise as you make more easy for me to make a decision. I went to Al Habtoor and took a test drive for around 25 minutes on bumpy old roads, checked some quick brakes, and found that the road noise is not bad as I was thinking.
    I feel thats my time to go some off road also and other quiter options you suggested are either expensive like Ford explorer or they are not proper 4 x 4.
    I also researched about Pajero and finally decided to go for it as it has lot of good comments beside some negative as well but I think in this price range I can not have any other vehicle available with this specification.
    Thanks Vivek for the valuable good advice and I always love to read your advice.
    I will get the car on 24th July and will keep you posted for any query about the car.
    Just one quick question abt the specification.
    What is the meaning of ” Power Mirrors with approach light and side turn lamp”??

  15. Hi Vivek,
    I am very impressed with your updates. This is very helpful!!

    I need your advice, please: planning to buy a new car and am torn between the pajero 3.8 and the jeep grand cherokee v6

    what’s the difference between them in terms of performance, resell value and reliability. Which would you recommend? (we need the car for the family but also we’d like to have the ability to drive off-road. )


    • Author

      Performance and efficiency-wise, Jeep leads the way. It packs a more powerful engine, while offering better fuel-efficiency. Though bigger in size, Pajero’s 3.8-litre engine is slightly slower, noisy and less efficient. Both vehicles are very good off-roaders though.

      More than resale value, I think you should be concerned with the demand for the vehicle. While both the Grand Cherokee and the Pajero depreciates faster, the Pajero will fetch you more buyers any day.

      Reliability-wise, I am not sure about the Grand Cherokee, but the Pajero does have a very good track record for rock-solid reliability.

      Choosing between the two is highly personal. The Jeep is more refined, behaves way better on-road, and is more fuel-efficient, but lacks an extra row of seats which the Pajero has. The Pajero has simple and reliable mechanicals, better demand in the market, and can seat 6 (7 if two of ’em are kids). I suggest you to thoroughly test drive both the vehicles; if possible, rent them out for a day each. Also keep in mind that there are rumours of the Pajero getting a complete makeover in just over a years time.

    • Everything mentioned about Grand Cherokee is ok, and as you said it has ability to go offroad, that’s it, don’t think it’s a Landcrusier offroad, during many desert trips with Jeeps we found out Cherokee fared very badly turned out to be average offroader and getting stuck easily if the driver is not much aware, even if there were people to help around, most of the time you will be having a Wrangler pulling it out in crowd, and after the transmission gets heated, even after waiting for cooling over long period of time (feb-march), it refuses to switch back to 4wd mode, so the instructor asked the family on offroad training to shift to Wrangler and he switched to Grand Cherokee and with some struggle and path through smaller dunes managed to bring it out. On road I think it’s the best behaving amongst Jeep family 4x4s. Please note I am taking about the current Grand Cherokee, I intend not to comment on the old one, as neither I have driven one, nor I saw any of those getting stuck. Also just search some of the articles in the Drive Arabia Cherokee, there are feedback about some mechanical issue reported by OWNERS.

  16. Royer, Thanks for sharing.
    I considered both cars Jeep GC and Pajero and I tested them several times.
    @daura If you are buying new and dont go off road Jeep seems to be the choice. Pajero is less efficient fuel wise as Vivek said and if a new model comes soon youΒ΄ll loose alot on the resale. Check out the new Pathfinder too.

  17. I have come across several guys, all of them having solid off-road experience and belonging to reputed off-road groups based in the UAE, complaining about the Jeeps having a tendency to overheat while venturing in the dunes. Apparently, it is mostly noted in Jeep Cherokees and Grand Cherokees. Any take on this Mash?

    • The broblem with new Jeeps is that traction control is not fully disabled unless you put it in low-range. And driving in low-range the whole time, well, is bad. Still, the Wrangler I drove for a whole day at the Jamboree was fine, and managed a lot in 4-high. And didn’t see any new GC’s failing. But don’t know, there is a probably a limit to how far you can take a GC.

  18. Hi Vivek,

    I need your advice: planning to buy a new car and am torn between the pajero GLS 3.5 LWB H/L Leather Rockford and the Honda Pilot EX-DL. Both with 3.5L V6 Engine.

    what’s the difference between them in terms of performance, resell value and reliability. Which would you recommend? (I’m working outside of the city, with a long distance travel and might encounter offroad and during my weekend off, I will be using it for family cruise both long and short travel. )

    • Sorry for the late reply; better to be late than never, if this helps you. πŸ™‚

      Performance-wise Honda is more powerful, more refined, more smooth and more fuel-efficient. Resale value should be more or less on the same lines. Reliability is guaranteed for both too. The Honda is not a proper off-roader and lacks low-range gearing, unlike the Pajero. If you encounter serious off-roading, like dune bashing or something, you may take the Honda off your list.

  19. Thank you guys for your feedback. Really appreciate it! Will let you know what we buy in the end. Most probably a Pajero πŸ™‚

    Thank you Vivek for all the help and advice you are providing us with.


  20. Dear Vivek,
    i’m buying a 3.0 pajero 2009 with 2nd option. can i do offroading? and is this one has better milage compared to 3.5 new one?

    • you can do off-roading, no issues with that..mileage will be roughly the same, but the 3.0L will be louder, more stressed and noisier, than the 3.5L

  21. Hi guys, just wanted to know about the approximate market value for a 2009 GLS Pajero 3.8 without leather and sunroof and no rockford, but with Nav, bluetooth parking sensors, etc. mileage is low at 35k…

    The new one costs about 124k+

    • 70-72k is a good range, lower the better, but not more..the basic and mid-option Pajeros never hold their values well..but where did u find one?..this spec is kind of hard to find as I have never found one till date..and whats the asking price?

    • He is okay with 73,000-74,000

  22. ^^ oh wait..is it 3-door or 5-door?? I was talkingg about the 5-door..

  23. Vivek, does the pajero 2009 no 2 option still uses timing chain? and how to check that if it requires to be changed.

    • The gen4 Pajero with 6g74 and 6g75 engines (3.5 n 3.8L engines) uses the timing belt I believe. Get the vehicle checked by a mechanic; they can tell you whether it needs replacement.

  24. Hi Vivek,your updates are very useful to know about the auto market.Well I am planning to buy an SUV and I am looking for Trial blazer and Pajero.Down here in Riyadh a 2009 trial blazer can get for 50000 Riyal and 2007 pajero is for about 55000 riyals.Please advise me which one is more suitable for me since I don’t do much offroading but having 5 person in family including kids.i prefer to have less maintenance cost.My budget also not more than 55000 Riyals.Or is there any other SUV you can suggest me.pl advise

    • Hi Williams,

      Your preference for less maintenance cost zeroes you into the Pajero. Trailblazers are fairly reliable, but any major repairs can result in a costly affair. Relatively, the Mitsubishi will be cheaper to maintain and run. Moreover, the Trailblazer has been discontinued; the one that has just entered the market is a Isuzu D-Max pickup modded into a 4wd, somewhat like how the Fortuner was made out of the Hilux!

  25. Thanks a lot for your advise.Even i feel the same as the pajero is much reliable.Now will have to look for one.Thanks

  26. please if there is difference bettween the pajero GLS and
    pajero autlander ,from infrot the driver. I want by the

    GBS , DVD player . my car is pajero GLS 2008 .

  27. Hi Guys,

    I really enjoyed the information posted here. I own a Pajero 2009 which I believe is a 3.0L GLS. I would like to know about its performance in desert? is it powerful enough? and also need some info on upgrades for i, like can i increase the engine power and are there turbo chargers available for petrol version?


  28. Hi Vivek, I have recently bought Pajero 2007 model, 3.0. After having complete detailing there is very annoying noise from front. Can you please advise me where I can take my car to fix the problem. Any good and economical workshop in Dubai? Regards

  29. Greetings Vivek,

    Thanks a million for this invaluable website. It was because of Drive Arabia, that I bought a 2012 3.8L Pajero in September. I am very satisfied with the performance to date except for the continuous, irritating alarm that stays on once you exceed 120kph. Any suggestions on how this can be silenced?

  30. Hi Vivek,
    I am interested in buying a new 4 X4. Confused between Fortuner safari 4.0, Pajero 3.5 & Prad 2.7 as my budjet is around that much
    I ve read your reviews & found them very informative & honest
    Pls advise
    Thanx – Manish, Muscat, OMAN

    • All depends on whether you will be into off-roading.

      Prado 2.7 is a very comfortable on-road family hauler of the 3, and does fine in most mild-moderate off-roading scenarios. But it seems a bit too underpowered for hardcore off-roading. It is fairly fuel-efficient as well.

      Pajero 3.5 is a jack of all trades. It is comfortable, but not as much as the Prado, since it turns out to be a wee bit on the noisier side, and the unibody construction causes the whole interior to rattle whenever you hit rough trails. That said, on the road it is largely smooth. It is a far better off-roader than the Prado 2.7, as it has very good torque in the low-end; you just have to be careful with the rear bumper though. Fuel-efficiency in city driving is alarming!

      Fortuner 4.0L, is simply a Hilux with covered 3rd row seats. It does not offer a smooth ride like the Prado or Pajero. However, it is a powerful and robust off-roader, and is the cheapest to maintain of all the three.

  31. any one can help me to my pajero 3.5 2011 model for desert , i want to upgrade thr power…thanks..

  32. hey everyone
    any one can tell me where is the best place that they can cut the front bummper lip and also add a skid plate for my car
    i got a pajero swb 3.0

  33. Hey Vivek, thanks for some nice stuff on the Pajero. I need some help on a 2006 Pajero. I want to changetheaudio system so it’s newer. Incorporating Bluetooth, USB support, DVD, satnav & rear cam (if possible) all in one head unit that supports the Rockford fosgate speakers already in the car. Any ideas? Costing?
    Also, I the car is 75k km driven, but I need to make it africa ready since aim planning to send it to my bro. Any suggestions / pointers?
    Thanks again for the nice read you have…

  34. Hi Vivek,
    Your comments are really helpful. I am planning to buy a new vehicle, kindly help me which one should I go for. Options are Honda CRV, Pajero GLS 3.5 LWB H/L Leather Rockford, Ford Edge or Hyundai Santa Fe all 2012 models.

    I will drive mostly in the city and very moderate off-road scenarios.

    Kindly let me your valuable opinion on the above with competitive price range if possible.

    • If there isn’t much of off-roading except some loose sand tracks driving, mild duning, and wadi driving, you may consider the Hyundai Santa-Fe. There are extreme adventurers who take things like the Ford Edge and CR-V to a good extent off-road, but realistically, Ford Edge and CR-V are good road vehicles and off-roading is not their forte.

  35. Hi Vivek sir,

    Iam planning to buy 4×4 model:2009-2010 ( for on road drive). plz advise me in one word , CRV or Pajero….

  36. Hi vivek,

    Is there any mechanical differences between a 2008 3.0 litre pajero(not GLS) with black door handles,black radiator grill and black mirror cover and a 2008 3.0 litre Pajero GLS.The only diffrenece I see is that the above mentioned parts are chrome finish in GLS,and I am not aware if any mechanical/spec differences are there.Please advise.

  37. Hi V. Great blog. Loved reading all the posts. I’m a proud owner of 3door Pajero 2009 3.0. Took it to the desert a couple of times. Though had to get the weird noises from dashboard fixed after the desert trip.. may be caused by the loosened screws.. but I must say 3.0 fairs very well off the road.

    Recently I’ve been offered a very nice deal of 0% interest rate from ENBD on new Pajeros for 3years. Just because of this deal i’m inclined to consider an upgrade to the 2013 5door GLS full option (while i still will be able to sell my 2009 before it hits 100k). I’ve gone through all the previous comments and your answers, but still being stubborn to ask a few questions before i upgrade.

    My 3.0 is found quite often on the Dubai-AbuDhabi highway rather than in a desert. The only 2 things on-road in last 3 years that annoyed me about my 3.0 are:

    — 3.0 has got a much louder engine and the road noise is too much. I upgraded the tires (Yokohama to Dunlop) after doing 80k on the clock but it didn’t change the road noise). For the engine sound, even a friend having 2008 5door 3.5 GLS pointed that out. I deducted from some of your answers above, the 3.5 is less noisier than 3.0 and.. and 3.8 is less noisier than 3.5 ..correct? Read on a different blog that exhaust noise was more in 2009 models? I’m considering to go for 3.8 after reading your comments ..hope i’m not upgrading to the same noise level?

    — I found 3.0 having a slow “pick up”.. (i might be using the wrong term for “slow acceleration”). What’s the case with 3.5 vs 3.8? On highway, i normally go upto 160kmph which is fine and smooth.. but pick up from 0kmph to 30kmph is what that takes time.)

    Don’t like Parado’s shape and interior.. worship the Land Cruiser but it’s way out of budget, and Ford Explorer despite having a cockpit full of aeroplane controls hasn’t got much resale value. Then this 0% interest rate really got me to consider Pajero again!!

    What will you do if you were me?

    • Well, I would not suggest an upgrade at this point, as there are rumours of the current generation Pajero being replace with an all-new shape by end of next year, and that will take a big toll on the resale value of the vehicle.

      If you really dont care about the new shape n resale, then its ok..In case of 3.5, especially when you floor it, and even in half throttle, it jumps off the line quicker than the 3.8 even, but after 50 kph, it just dies..however, I found it to be more responsive off-road, coz of the better low-end..I would suggest the 3.8 only because it has an extra gear, so that will help you with fuel effiency on highway..The 3.8l is also fairly less noisier than the 3.5l..

      If you dont really do off-roading beyond the sand tracks, mild dunes and wadi’s, the Explorer is a very good choice. The resale value of the Explorer is not much worser than the Mitsubishi, and the new shape is actually selling good in the market. If you are considering resale, the only brands you can look at is Toyota and Honda. Moreover, the Ford dealers now offer service & maintenance package up to 60k kms, which can be extended as much as up to 200k kms I heard, for an extra premium. Maintenance covers all parts except tyres. That said, there are other good crossovers in the market worth considering, like the Hyundai Santa Fe.

  38. Hi guys

    Could you recommend any good tire brand for pajero 3.5 2010 16 inch stock wheels. my preference is comfortability and low noise and obviously on a budget…


    • Frankly, there is nothing that fits your criteria, simply because good things don’t come without a premium ;-)..Either you spend some bucks for Michelin or Bridgestone, and enjoy the relatively less tyre noise; or cheap out on the tyre by going for Yokohama or Dunlop, both of which will start giving off tyre noise as early as just 25-30k kms…or cheap out even more and get stuff like Nexen or Firestone, and dont even think about road noise… πŸ™‚ ..

  39. Clear enough. Thanks mate.

  40. Dear Vivek,

    Could you please provide me Al Mirath auto repairing in Umm Ramoul contact number and persons name.


  41. Hi Vivek,

    I live in KSA.I am having Elantra 2008 model without any mechanical problems.One of my friend who is doing car business told me that he is having a 2008 3.0 V6 Pajero full option from Dubai which completed 130000 km.Can I I buy it for 50K SAR if everything is good.Is the noise you mentioned above,can be felt much inside the cabin? I am thiking to do off road but not serious about it.Your suggestion would be helpful for me. Is it advisable to go for old pajero?
    Thanks on advance.

  42. hi vivek

    i am a person commuting between Dubai- abu dhabi on daily basis .

    Being a civil engineer , i always has to deal with mudroads at site ( not offroading)

    since my prefrence is a smooth long drive , my order of prefrence are edge,explorere and pajero

    presently i own the best sedan of UAE IE :- 2010 Model Camry

    please advice me

  43. hi vivek,

    i am planning to buy a Pajero 2013, but i confused whether i have to go full option with surroof (AED 123k) or second option with sunroof (AED 115k).
    plase advise me which one has more resell value and one more thing if car with sunroof will get more resell or less.

    thanks & regards
    S.Mohamed rafi

    • Hi Rafi,

      If you do not mind spending the extra cash go in for the Sunroof. Most people I know (excluding myself) wants a vehicle with Sunroof so obviously that is reason enough to believe that if you have a sunroof the resale value could be slightly higher.

      Hope that helps.



  44. Hi Vivek,

    Awesome review… ! Very well written…

    Am considering a 2010 Pajero with 79500 on the meter with a clear intention of selling it in 2 years time… Hope I won’t be set back by a huge amount if I go through with this decision… and how about maintenance do you think I would be spending more than 500 AED per service (i.e. per 5K km) ?



  45. Hi Vivek,

    As I am in field job and drive 250km per day on road. Reading your above articles you have suggested for Hyundai santafe as a smooth comfortable and less noise in 120k speed. Kindy advise the reliability and resale factor and which one to go for 2.4 FWD or 3.3 V6.

    • There aren’t any particularly serious issues I have heard about the Santa Fe, as long as it receives the timely service and maintenance. And V6 3.3 is the one to go for, 2.4 being a lot underpowered!

  46. Hi Vivek,
    Im a pajero 3.0l v6 2008 model owner. The mileage of my car has reached 108,000 kms. I need advice on 2 things;
    1. When i have to change timing belt and how much it approx costs at some good workshop apart from habtoor?
    2. Is the engine a non-interference engine? I mean does it get damaged on timing belt breaking or not?
    Would appreciate your response.

    • I am not sure if it uses a belt or a chain, as I remember having a confusion regarding that. Just visit Al Mirath Auto Garage, or Autotune garage, both in Umm Ramoul area. They are very good workshops which are way too cheaper in price, and do a better job than Al Habtoor. For contact numbers, check the comments, as I think I have lost them. You should find it in one of the Pajero long-term update blogs πŸ™‚

  47. dear vivek
    i am planing to buy my first 4×4 car 3.8litre fro 70k full option driven 78000km
    so do you think it is a good deal??
    and the second thing i wanted to know which car you will suffest me (good for 4×4) in the budget of 80K
    thanks for your help in advance

    • What model is it? Does it have full service history? And have you got it checked up from Al Habtoor or any other known garage?

      For 80k, you may even look into the Nissan Xterra, Nissan Pathfinder (old shape), and Toyota Fortuner. If you are ok with older cars, you may check the 2006-2008 model Toyota Prado v6 and 2003-2005 model Toyota Land Cruiser (6-cylinder), with not much mileage, proper maintenance and service history – those are rock solid vehicles.

  48. i forgat to mentioned that it is pajero

  49. Thank you vivek. I have got Mirath Auto number. It is mentioned in the blog. I will contact the garage for information.

  50. Hi Vivek,

    Trust you are well.

    I am looking forward to buy my first car, and with the budget and available option, Pajero 3.5L (2013), Mid range is what I can get. After 30% discount (Ramadan offer), I am getting it for 104K, is it the right price?

    My weekly usage would be around 200-250KM/week, and may be off roading once a year(very less possibility), Can you please advice if my choice of Pajero(without sunroof {only option available again})is good buy or is there any other vehicle I should opt for?

    budget around 105-110K.

    Thanks in advance for you help.


    • Author

      If you do not intend to off-road, or will not be going beyond the beaches, wadi trails or road-side desert sands, I suggest that you should be looking at the crossover SUVs available in the same price bracket. If not for off-roading, there really is no point in having the Pajero, as there are several other crossovers out there which are far more comfortable and fuel efficient for on-road travels. The V6 Hyundai Santa Fe, Ford Explorer (although I doubt if that would fit your budget), Toyota RAV 4 etc, are all good picks.

  51. What a succesful story Vivek. You sold the car and still ppl are so interested in this car and your opinion. Great job you have done helping so many to decide.
    Mash I belive you ought to buy a more popular car. Something like an Accord, Corolla or Rav4. You will have a lot more followers judging after the Pajero story.

  52. Hi Vivek,

    I am just narrowing with 3.5 ,2010 model pajeero(full option) which have clocked around 15K kilometers, with full service history. What should be the best rate for it?
    And 2010 V6 prodo basic model for 97K dhs clocked around 65K which one will be best choice?
    I am not a frequent off-roader. Please advice.
    Many thanks.

    • Drive both and see what you like. In all probability though, the Prado will be more attractive. Prado has better fuel efficiency, has better 3rd row seating, is less noisier inside, and is a better off-roader.

      Are you sure about the 15,000 kms mileage on the Pajero?? Anyway, if that is correct, then the top-spec 2010 3.5L Pajero should be around 75k. Anything more is a loss since the facelifted 2013 full-spec model costs only around 102k!

  53. Many thanks Vivek for your swift useful information. Yes its done only 15K Kilometers.

  54. hi vivek i’m planning to buy pajero 2008 in galadari -preowned car it’s basic model with 119,000 km, the dealer told me they will going to change the cars 4 tires, do you think its worth it to buy in galdari or look in auto market in al wir? and one more thing its only five seater is it possible to make it 7? thanks!

  55. hi vivek i’m planning to buy pajero 2008 in galadari -preowned car it’s basic model with 119,000 km, the dealer told me they will going to change the cars 4 tires, do you think its a good deal? cost around 43000

    • I suppose it is the 3-door version, or is it not? Pricing is ok, considering that you are getting 4 new tyres (check the tyre brand though), and if the car is neat inside-out, while having a clean service history.

    • No it’s a 5 door that why i’m having bad thoughts about it why is that cheap? I have my friend mechanic we’ll check it later and maybe for a test drive. Can you give me some tips what should be my expectation? it’s my first time to buy SUV not really familiar and it’s a 5 yr old car πŸ™‚ thanks!

    • Pajeros have low resale value, so its fine. But I am wondering why only 5 seats! As far as I know, there was never a 5-door, 5-seat version for the Pajero. You sure it wasn’t folded into the boot floor? Did you lift the boot carpet and check? If its not at all there, then it would have been removed probably, as this might have been a company car or something. Take the VIN number of the car and head over to Habtoor to check the service history and previous owner details.

      Expectations should be low. The engine is a 3.0-litre motor mated to a 4-speed automatic, so it is going to be slow. Fuel efficiency will be crap. And it is going to have a noisy cabin. Things should be fine otherwise, and Pajero is something that is cheap and easy to fix.

  56. oh gees! I did not checked that! I thought the last seats are hanging πŸ™‚ for fuel efficiency could you give me estimated L/100km? I’m beginning to be have second thoughts πŸ™ my daily routine is averaging 70-75 km.

  57. In city and highway combined, I remember my Pajero running anywhere between 450-480 kms for 130 Dhs of fuel. On a couple of occassions though, I have crossed 500 kms on a single tank.

    • hi vivek i already test drive the car it was smooth for me, my only problem is it runs 119,000 km my mechanic told me i need to change the timing belt and some stuff do know how much for these ? you mention this al mirith garage is it cheap but reliable there?

    • Yes. Al Mirath is a very good garage.

    • vivek i am so disappointed as what you said i did check the VIN no. in al habtoor and the result is worst, it had a major accident and the mileage had been tampered lastt record history says its over 200k! my God I thought buying from known dealer will be better, but it turns out its like cheap car dealer in sharjah.. πŸ™

  58. Hi,

    Can sumbody please advice i am looking to buy a Pajero 2005 GLS V6, mileage 125000 for AED 28000 the car seems to be in very gud condition is it worth the price and most importantly it will be my 1st car

  59. Hi Guys…
    I have a Pajero 2010 3.5L LWB full option, agency maintained and done 62,000 kms. Please advice what is the best price range to sell…by the way i am thoruoghly impressed with the car in all ways till date.

  60. Hi Vivek,
    Good day, i hve pajero 2010 mid-range model, i just want to ask if this model have anti-theft warning system because i never tried to activate although its showing on to the owners manual..


    • On most modern cars anti, theft system activates itself when you lock your car. Mostly there is a long blinking red light somewhere which shows it activated.

    • None of the Mitsubishi vehicles offered here, are offered with a theft deterrent system. You may get it fit from outside though.

  61. Hi Vivek, i visited Al Habtoor Y”day and got a quote of Aed.123,000.00 for 3.5 Top of the range. few of above comments says it costs only >110,000.00?? or Pajero prices has gone up? mine is mostly high way/city use and less off roading.do you have any other Japanese cars to recommend in 110-120 range?
    anyways, your review on Pajero is interesting and helpfull, thanks πŸ™‚

    • Sorry for the late reply Mojith. Prices of the Pajero keeps fluctuating depending on the time of the year. Usually towards the late mid-year their prices do go down.

  62. Hello Vivek,

    Thanks for all updates on PAJERO.

    I am looking for SUV. which one is better PAJERO 3.8 or For Explorer Leather? in terms of price explorer is higher than pajero. Any suggestions will be appreciated.

    Thanks in advance.

    • The answer lies in two things.

      -> If the priority is for true off-road ability, then its the Pajero.

      -> If the priority is for 7 seats (Pajero’s 7th seat is a joke), fuel-efficiency, comfier ride, and way lesser maintenance costs for first 5 years, then its the Explorer.

    • ^^Pajero’s 3rd row seats I meant… πŸ˜€

  63. Hello Vivek,

    Awesome reviews… ! Very well written…

    I need some advice on the best SUV 7-seater with great air conditioning.
    price range (Dhs. 140k to 175K).

    Any suggestions will be appreciated.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Prado top range… no point in looking at the others…

    • Check the Toyota Prado; because if off-roading matters, then there is nothing else. You may check the Nissan Pathfinder (the old shape which is still on sale) and save a few bucks though.

      If off-roading is not a priority, you may check out the Dodge Durango, and alternatively, even the Ford Explorer.

  64. Vivek,

    I am looking to buy a new pajero 3.5 but afraid that they will change this shape soon. Do you know when is Pajero going to change the whole shape?


    • As of right now, there is no change in sight, although a mild facelift is coming soon. The current platform may continue for up to a couple of more years (or even more) before a new model is launched.

  65. Hi Vivek,

    Need some advice. I was looking and want to buy SUV. My choices are Pajero, Ford Explorer, Honda Pilot. Which do you prefer? Sometimes I’m using it to Fujairah (2x a week)as I was working in the site. Kindly please advice in terms of fuel economy, durable and less maintenance, and of course family use.

    Thank you

    • The Pajero is a proper off-roader, while the Explorer & Pilot are more of soft-roaders – meaning, they are no good beyond loose sand flats, mild dunes & wadi trails. So unless you need true off-road capability, you may choose between the Ford or the Honda.

      In terms of maintenance, the Explorer will be on the lower side atleast for the initial 3-5 years, owing to the free maintenance & service package Ford offers. Both the Ford & Honda are comfortable family haulers, and are pretty fuel efficient.

  66. Hi Vivek,

    May I know where can I get the same bull bar you used to have? I’ve been looking online and can’t find any.

    • Hi Earl,

      It was there on the car when I bought it. You may get a similar one from the dealers; for cheaper options, you may visit the car accessories shops in Sharjah Industrial area and Rolla, or in Satwa and Naif in Dubai.

  67. Hi Vivek,
    I want to buy used Honda CRV or Mitsubishi Pajero or Santa fe between 2009 to 2011 year model but bit confused to choose. I want to buy on the basis of maintenance, fuel consumption and resale.
    I drive around 80 KM in a day but no off road drive. Kindly advise. Thank you

    • If you do not go off-road, you may remove the Pajero from the list.

      Between CRV & Santa Fe, the choice boils down to personal preferences. The Santa Fe will be more affordable to buy & maintain, is bigger and more spacious than the CRV, and has extra row of seats; if you are looking at the v6, you have extra power too. The Honda will be slightly more fuel-efficient, has better resale value, and is more powerful than the 4-cylinder variant of the Santa-Fe.

  68. Hi Vivek,

    Hope you are doing great!

    My Pajero 2010 is due for 80,000km service. Can I contact Autotune on behalf of you (is there any contact person). Two questions:

    1. What all needs to be changed for 80k service?
    2. What is the approximate bill I need to expect (looks like some break jobs are there)?

    Will appreciate your response.

    • The number for Autotune is 04-286 3565

      I doubt if they would recognize me by name.

      As for the 80k service, I really do not know what is done and how much it would cost, as I sold my Pajero before it crossed 60k. You may try calling up Habtoor service, find out what they do and for how much, and then verify the same with these guys.

  69. Hi Vivek

    I am looking for a 2nd hand vehicle. I am looking at fuel economy/low maintenance and good resale value . I was thinking about Fortuner 2.7/Pajero 3.5 all of which are 2008 model onwards(my budget is AED35000). one more question is it recommended buying a 4×4 second car? will i shell out more on repairs of the engine/gears ?


    • Hi Robin,

      Firstly, a second hand car is always a second hand car. If you are looking for cars that old, it may be hard to find one with a proper service history (dealer / reputed outside garages). Even if you do, it may not fit your price point, unless it is a high mileage car. If a proper service history is not there, all you may do is take it to the respective dealer garage, or any other good garage outside, and do a thorough check-up before buying.

      If you are considering fuel-economy, then you may strike the Pajero 3.5 off your list.

  70. Hey guys.
    If i want to chose between pajero, and explorer 2009.what do u recommend from reliability point of view

    • i am driving the 2012 3.8l version and in terms of reliability the pajero is unbeatable.

      i bought it as our 2nd car, so i smash it around and it holds out strong. service is cheap also.

      only downfall of the pajero against the explorer is less technology and that thing is a** ugly and gets the street credit of a yaris.. πŸ™

      anyways, served me good for 2.5 years now, and it is dirt cheap (i think i paid 138k if i remember correctly)

    • Hi Ahmed,

      Both the vehicles are known to be very reliable, although the far less sophisticated Pajero is likely the one to be more headache-free. But the safety & ride quality in the Explorer is a world apart, and puts the Pajero to shame.

  71. Dear
    Vivek Menon

    I would like to know the country of origin of my 2014 model pajero 3.5 GLS full option (Price 96000 QAR) ,i bought from a local showroom in doha at zero km ,according to them they imported from dubai…….. i don’t have more details about the authorized dealer…car is perfect ,i bought Gulf warranty for 3000 QAR,and registered here in Authorized dealership for periodic preventive maintenance ……. I would like to know how i got the car 20000 QAR difference from Authorized dealer in Qatar ……..somebody told that it may be a defected piece or made in Philippines…i did’t get any evidence based info for my doubt …… i hope you will help me ……..

    thanking you

    regards to drivearabia

    • You may check the metal plates on the inner part of the b-pillars, jus below the door lock striker..its mostly on the driver door side; if not there, then it will be there eithr in the same area on the front passenger door side or on the right corner of the inner frame when you open the hood, just whre the windshield cowl ends. If you r lazy for all this, or still do not happen to find it, take ur car to the local dealer and they will tell u. πŸ™‚

  72. Please check origin using the VIN number. For more details, please search t

  73. Dear

    Vivek Menon / Deepak

    It was there in driver side door ….. and written in capital letter’s …MADE IN JAPAN ……above the year of manufacture ………i wish it will be same there too ……..thank you for the help …….. apologizing for the stupid question …….

  74. What do you think of 2008 Pajero SWB (2doors) 3.0 V6 ??
    is it a good car to buy ?? knowing that the car has done 100,000 KM and agency maintained ! and I’m not an off-roader nor am I a speeder .

    • If you are getting it for a good price, and if you do not expect too much from it, it should be ok. Fuel efficiency will be just ok, if you don’t push it to pull off quick accelerations..Mileage is not an issue as long as it has been maintained well; it is a true Japanese car and it will last for as long as you want it to.

    • Suggest, take a test drive you being in the backseat. It is the best way to judge this vehicle. Saying from experience.

  75. Gentlemen

    I am having a 3.8L 2010 Pajero. My usage is very minimum and my car has done only 32000kms. One of my friends advised me to change the timing belt as the car is 5 years old. Kindly advise whether it is necessary to change it and what more I have to change.

  76. Vivek, Im planning of buying a family friend’s 2005 ,5 door,3.8 done 2,00,000 Pajero.Computerized check did not indicate any problem.Tech informed steering rack and oil pump leakage.Will be using only during weekends.What would be a best quote for the car ?

  77. Vivek

    What is the long term rear bumper/sand scoop fix on the pajero? Thinking of buying one but would worry about breaking the rear bumper on dune trips.



    • Solution is to fix a rear tow-bar, which will sit directly under the aluminium-looking plastic part of the bumper. It can be had from any accessory shops

  78. Hi Vivek/guys,

    Excellent reviews, helped a lot in making my decision to buy pajero 2010 3.5 recently (70K kms on it). Though I got what I expected but im little concerned about the suspension being quite firm. even a small bump makes the whole car vibrate. Is it normal in the pajero or I should have mine checked ?
    Or is there any service/maintenance required at 70K Kms regarding the suspension ? Please advise

    • It is normal with the Pajero, blame the monocoque construction. The same may not be observed in a Prado or Pathfinder, since both of those feature a body-on-frame construction.

  79. Hi vivek, Thanks for all your valuable advise. I stay in Doha qatar. I got an offer of 2013 Pajero 3.5L top range 28K KMS completed for 75K Riyals. Kindly advise……

  80. Just about to buy a 3.8L 2015 Pajero and just wondered what type of upgrades one would need to stop this rear bumper issue from
    Happening. Which brand of bull bar did you go for an the approx cost. I am buying mine In Doha. Thanks

  81. Disregard my request I just saw the answer above is to fit a towbar

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