Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - Rerepo

My son is looking for a cheap car and a family friend has offered an 'abandoned' 2005 Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 with 80k on the clock. The car would be almost free but I am worried it could cost more to recommission than its worth.

The main issue is that it was last MoT'd in Dec. 2019 and has been sat, outside, unused since March 2020. The current owner has had the car for about 7 years, serviced it annually and had no trouble with it. It passed the last MoT without a problem and has only done 1000 miles since then.

I am going to look at the car in the next few days but these are relatively uncommon and I know little about them. Are these good cars and what problems should I be looking for on this model? I am expecting that it would need a complete service, new brake discs and pads, a battery and possibly a set of tyres. I could do most of this myself. Anything I am overlooking?

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - elekie&a/c doctor
These are good and reliable little runners . Tyres , brakes and battery are easy fixes . I would be worried about any excessive corrosion underneath. Perhaps put it in for an mot and see what happens .
Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - bathtub tom

I would ask why it was parked up as it had a fairly recent MOT (3 months).

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - Rerepo

I would ask why it was parked up as it had a fairly recent MOT (3 months).

The owner bought a much newer and better car and with the first lockdown etc basically never got round to selling the Mitsubishi. He now basically just wants it gone.

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - craig-pd130

As it's only a year since it last ran, definitely try and jump-start it just to make sure it's OK. The old oil will need changing but it shouldn't be too contaminated. Make sure that mice haven't nested in the airbox before trying to start it!

Handbrake could be sticking on, and you've already mentioned discs, pads and tyres.

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - Andrew-T

could cost more to recommission than its worth.

That's a nebulous phrase. If you mean what you could get for it, probably not much. If you mean how much are you prepared to pay to make it roadworthy, your choice. It's a question of whether you could find something better for less. Sounds to me as if it should be usable for a bit of cheap work.

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - edlithgow

In those circs the owner is likely to let you check it out fairly thoroughly before you commit, so if you have agreed an appropriately low price you have very little to lose.

New pads and disks sounds likely to be a superfluous expense to me, unless you have a reason to believe otherwise. Pads don't wear out sitting.

Disks rust, but (cosmetic MOT failure aside, which certainly happened in Scotland) cleaning and freeing up calipers and changing brake fluid seems likely to be more productive.

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - RT

In those circs the owner is likely to let you check it out fairly thoroughly before you commit, so if you have agreed an appropriately low price you have very little to lose.

New pads and disks sounds likely to be a superfluous expense to me, unless you have a reason to believe otherwise. Pads don't wear out sitting.

Disks rust, but (cosmetic MOT failure aside, which certainly happened in Scotland) cleaning and freeing up calipers and changing brake fluid seems likely to be more productive.

Disks can rust quite significantly when stood so replacement may be easier.

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - edlithgow

In those circs the owner is likely to let you check it out fairly thoroughly before you commit, so if you have agreed an appropriately low price you have very little to lose.

New pads and disks sounds likely to be a superfluous expense to me, unless you have a reason to believe otherwise. Pads don't wear out sitting.

Disks rust, but (cosmetic MOT failure aside, which certainly happened in Scotland) cleaning and freeing up calipers and changing brake fluid seems likely to be more productive.

Disks can rust quite significantly when stood so replacement may be easier.

II've de-rusted disk rims quite effectively here (car parked outside during the summer monsoon/typhoon season, when I was in the UK) by motoring them in 2nd gear and applying a crumpled beer can to them. Grinds the rust off and costs nothing.

https://bobistheoilguy.com/forums/threads/coke-can-for-brake-drums.242350/

(Starts with the drums, but goes on to disks)

(There was an HJ thread, but it was mostly howls of condemnation from the chorus with no visible means of support, and search doesn’t find it anyway).

I dunno if that would have been good enough to avoid my past UK Cosmetic MOT Fails (for rusty disks which passed the braking function test just fine), but I'd think it would have been worth a try, if I'd thought of it.

Regarding the criticism in that BITOG thread, that a wire brush would have been easier and safer, I’m not sure this is the case. As well as the point I make on the anti-corrosion effect of aluminium (which is probably only relevant if you use a binder to retain it) aluminium oxide is a very hard abrasive. A wire brush is roughly the same hardness as the disk, and tends to polish the surface of rust scale rather than remove it

Replacing these disks wouldn't necessarily be all that easy, since its a "captive rotor" design, involving risk of bearing damage during removal.

Edited by edlithgow on 24/02/2021 at 02:57

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - dylan

You might be being a little pessimistic. A few years ago I left a 10-year-old Daihatsu Charade in the garage for 18 months, untouched. At the end of the 18 months it needed only a new battery and then it started right away, and went through the MOT no problem. (It likely wouldn't have needed a new battery except that I left it connected when I should have disconnected it).

Of course garaged is better than outside, but I suspect it wouldn't have made much difference.

Bottom line - I'd charge the battery (or get a new one) and give it a try before you worry about all the things that might be wrong.

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - madf

Try startiing and driving.

The clutch should work. If it is stuck due to rust PIA.

If it moves then disks are not rusted solid.

Check for oil leaks/coolant leaks (no antifreeze= bad news in cold winter),and corrosion especuially around suspension mounts - front and rear.

Budget?

New brake pads.plus.

Check exhaust/tyres etc...

Check MOT history - it will show if well maintained or not..

If no rust, and it moves and no noises/leaks worth a gamble.

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - Rerepo

Try startiing and driving.

The clutch should work. If it is stuck due to rust PIA.

If it moves then disks are not rusted solid.

Check for oil leaks/coolant leaks (no antifreeze= bad news in cold winter),and corrosion especuially around suspension mounts - front and rear.

Budget?

New brake pads.plus.

Check exhaust/tyres etc...

Check MOT history - it will show if well maintained or not..

If no rust, and it moves and no noises/leaks worth a gamble.

Thanks for all the comments. The MoT history is actually very good, and I know the car had routine servicing. If it had been stored in a garage I would be more optimistic, but its been outside in an exposed location. I expect the discs to be very rusty..

I remember in my youth I left a Triumph Herald parked up for about six weeks and the clutch plate stuck to the flywheel. I finally got it free after starting the car with one back wheel jaked up and spinning. Then hold the clutch pedal down and slowly apply the brakes. The clutch let go with a bang.

How long do tyres last if left standing outside? I guess they will get bad flat spots.

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - Andrew-T

<< How long do tyres last if left standing outside? I guess they will get bad flat spots. >>

That will depend on [1] how old they are, [2] how well they hold pressure and [3] how much direct sunlight they are exposed to. As has been discussed in other recent threads.

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - madf

I left a caravan over winter with 5 year old tyres on: rather than removing them and storing it on stands. (as we had done in prior years)

Next year both burst in June on first use after winter.

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - RT

I left a caravan over winter with 5 year old tyres on: rather than removing them and storing it on stands. (as we had done in prior years)

Next year both burst in June on first use after winter.

My caravan stands outside unused every winter with no problem - I always replace tyres at 7 years from manufacture date.

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - Rerepo

Little bit of an update...

This morning went to see this 2005 Mitsubishi Colt that's been standing more than a year. Battery was totally flat. Tyres a bit low but not flat...Moss growing on the wipers.

Put some jump leads on, turned the key and it immediately sprung into life and ticked over nicely - amazing!

Discs are corroded to hell but basically everything seems to work as it should. Engine is smooth and no oil or water leaks visible. Seems a solid little motor....

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - RT

Little bit of an update...

This morning went to see this 2005 Mitsubishi Colt that's been standing more than a year. Battery was totally flat. Tyres a bit low but not flat...Moss growing on the wipers.

Put some jump leads on, turned the key and it immediately sprung into life and ticked over nicely - amazing!

Discs are corroded to hell but basically everything seems to work as it should. Engine is smooth and no oil or water leaks visible. Seems a solid little motor....

So - what's your conclusion, are you going to take it on?

Mitsubishi Colt 1.1 - Recommissioning a car - Rerepo

Little bit of an update...

This morning went to see this 2005 Mitsubishi Colt that's been standing more than a year. Battery was totally flat. Tyres a bit low but not flat...Moss growing on the wipers.

Put some jump leads on, turned the key and it immediately sprung into life and ticked over nicely - amazing!

Discs are corroded to hell but basically everything seems to work as it should. Engine is smooth and no oil or water leaks visible. Seems a solid little motor....

So - what's your conclusion, are you going to take it on?

Yes indeed. Never really noticed these cars before but they actually seem pretty good.

 

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