Joined: Aug 02, 2006
Location: McLean, VA, USA
Sun Nov 12, 2006 4:55 pm
This one was a disaster. We bought it for my former wife, after she started to drive with some confidence. I believe it was 1996, may be 95 or 97. This was 92’ Mitsubishi Galant GLStd. This car fascinated us, and I still think it is beautiful, despite all the stuff what happened to it.
We were buying it from the dealer, and it had a bad turbine. After long negotiations dealer agreed to replace the turbine, but it turned out later they just put another crap instead of the original one, or just gave it some facelifting. After a few months car started to smoke like hell if you step on the gas. We got used to it, though. At the end, those were not us who were breathing this smoke, and at these times in Moscow it was not that extraordinary – there were a plenty of cars on the street smoking even worse.
We bought it in the fall, and promptly learned that having a diesel car in winter in Moscow was not fun at those times. Winter fuel was scarce, and putting in summer fuel diluted by gas was tricky and did not always help. Several times we had to tow the car to the nearest warm garage to be able to start it.
My former wife started to get her share of accidents. Among a few insignificant ones came one more or less serious. She rear-ended another car. Nobody was hurt, but damage to our car was significant. The car was able to move by itself, though, and we were able to get home. I severely overheated it on the way home, because the cooling fan was stuck in the radiator and did not turn, and I did not notice this in a rush.
I think that this overheating triggered another problem. One day a few months later the engine started to produce some strange sounds. It continued for a couple of days, and then I set off to figure out what was wrong. I opened the hood and tried to determine the source of this sound. I revved the engine, and it made a loud “BAM” and stalled. The stream of motor oil showed up from beneath, joyfully running aside my leg…
Broken rod and ruined block. New engine was priced at quite a few thousand dollars and was not an option, so I set off to search for a used one. They were not in abundance. In fact, they were scarce. My wife did not have anything to drive, and pressure was mounting. I found one possible donor car, but it needed some serious paper work and title change before I even could think of buying it. Not willing to wait until this story was over, I made a huge mistake and bought another engine, which did not have a turbine and, worst of all, did not have proper customs clearance.
Not sure now why I did it back then, probably because my wife needed her ride, which has been disabled for more than three months. Anyway, as a result of this operation I got a Galant that had illegal engine making about 60hp. Pretty impressive for 1.3 ton car. You can get used to this power, though.
About that time I separated from my former wife, and got this car as a part of the separation deal. It took me several years to legalize the engine and to sort out some mechanical problems originated from the time of the accident. I still have this car, I use it whenever I visit Moscow, but mostly it sits in garage back there and costs me $400 every year in parking fees. I don’t know when and how I’m going to get rid of it.
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