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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all! I just picked up my new 91 3000GT VR4 yesterday in Kentucky. I was just starting my drive back to Columbus, OH when the car suddenly died.

The engine souded perfect, and I was moving at about 80MPH when the engine just shut off, and a nasty burning smell started coming out of the center of the dash and the center vents. I stopped the car, and the engine would not restart. It will crank over fine, but will not catch. I don't smell anything bad under the hood, and as near as I can tell every accessory still works.

The car is stranded out in Murray, KY and I'm going to try to get it running next weekend for the long drive home. Any help any of the great folks on this board could give me on diagnostic procedures or possible solutions would be GREATLY appreciated.


BTW, when the tow truck got there, I used his screwdriver to remove the factory stereo to see if the problem was obviously behind it. I didn't see anything unusual, and since it was a good four hours since it died, everything was cold (if it was ever hot). I also checked all of the fuses under the dash and under the hood... they all look fine.

Thanks in advance, everyone!

:confused:
 

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Lost Soul
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I have no clue why it would it would smell bad. But the VR-4's have a problem with the y-pipe blowing off if it is not correctly tightened down. May want to check that and I hope the tow truck used a flat bed, if he pulled it just on two wheels then you are lookin at some serious damage. You shoulda came on here first theres a few of us Kentucky guys on we coulda met up somewhere and talk about the cars.

-Jeff
 

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Wild & Wacky Meerkat
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Damn dude. That sucks. Believe me, I know the feeling. My 92 VR4's Trans died on the night I was driving home, and it was 2 AM on a Saturday. I won't even GO into the ensuing problems I had with the tow truck company.

I really have no advice to contribute, since we don't know enough about what's going on inside the engine bay right now. I would check the timing belt when you get there, carefully remove the front timing belt cover. See if that looks good, or if there is a burnt rubber odor in that area. (that would mean a belt fried :eek:) Be VERY careful with the two bolts you remove, and the collars for them that 'may' be stuck in the timing belt cover, (they way they should be) or loose, from age and vibration cracks. You DON'T want to drop those in that area, if your timing belt is not the problem.

good luck dude. Alot of us have been there. It will get better.

Elton
 

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Wild & Wacky Meerkat
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Darktrail said:
.... I hope the tow truck used a flat bed, if he pulled it just on two wheels then you are lookin at some serious damage. ...
Hmm... I wonder what that does to a drivetrain Jeff.....

Oh wait, lemme go check my checkbook. It's written in there.....

*recalls*
$2750.00 for a new transmission - $400 in Labor for the install
$400 for a 'new' Used Rear differential (installed myself)
$300 Timing belt retime, due to slipped belt under crankforces. (luckily, thank god, no valve damage)

hmmm....

and I think my driveshaft may have problems, so that'd be another grand roughly for a used, or C/F replacement....

Are we having fun yet? :(


Elton
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The tow truck was a flatbed, but only because I kept insisting on it on the phone.

I would still love to meet with some of ya in Kentucky, we're driving down this Saturday to either fix the car or tow it back to Columbus, OH.

I smelled around the engine bay and I couldn't smell anything that would be out of the ordinary. (fuel, burning plastic, rubber, anything) So I'm almost ruling out something under the hood.
 

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Wild & Wacky Meerkat
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Mr.Bill said:
The tow truck was a flatbed, but only because I kept insisting on it on the phone. ...
I tried that. It didn't do much, as you can see. :( :(

*sigh* My poor VR4. :(

E
 

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Lost Soul
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I don't know if the y-pipe blowing off causes the engine to die...but i belive it does...I know it you lose powersteering and braking so I assume the engine kills. Hopefully it will not be a slipped timing belt.

Good Luck,
-Jeff
 

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Wild & Wacky Meerkat
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yes, the ypipe coming of causes the engine to instantly shut down.

It's because the Throttle body and injectors are not getting anything NEAR what the ECU THINKS they're getting, based on the readings from the MAS and boost system.

It's actually a quick fix, look at the throttle body, and you'd see the y-pipe hanging there off to the left of it, not seemingly attached to the T-body. It's really obvious.

So if you sniffed around the comparent, and didn't notice it, you were either REALLY not paying attention, or that's not the problem.

Your assumption of a fried ECU is a good start. But I'm not sure there would have been a burning or unfamiliar odor from the vents, unless somehow the smell permeated through, and got caught up in the airstream, making you think that's where it was coming from (ie, had the vent system on recirculate)

E
 

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your mom
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Elmo... where did he make mention of assuming a fried ECU? I don't see it. Anyways, thats my vote. Fried ECU.
 

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Wild & Wacky Meerkat
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:D

Detective work.

;)

He said he took the stereo out, and looked behind it.

The only reason ANYONE in their right mind, would take the stereo out when they're car died and the tow truck guy was there, would be to see if an odor smelled during the car's death originated from the ECU, which happens to be located right on the floor board, behind the stereo components. :)

OR, he was just really retarded, and thought that the stereo caused the car to die cause he had the bass cranked up too loud! ;) :D j/k dude. :)

E
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
You're right... I've been thinking it was the ECU, since as far as I know, there aren't many other components in that area.

Is there a way to check codes on this car, if any? Also, anyone want to give me a ballpark price of what I can expect to pay for an ECU?
 

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Mr.Bill said:
You're right... I've been thinking it was the ECU, since as far as I know, there aren't many other components in that area.

Is there a way to check codes on this car, if any? Also, anyone want to give me a ballpark price of what I can expect to pay for an ECU?
A short circuited ECU would cause exactly what you describe. This happened to my Talon. The car shut off and would not restart. It would crank over just fine, but since the ECU no longer worked, there were no injector pulses.

A replacement ECU will not be cheap from Mitsu .. better to get a spare one from someone on the board. Mitsu wanted $1150 for a new ECU for the Talon, but I got a spare for $100 from someone on the Talon list.
 

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Cam Angle Sensor is one possibility.
 

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Wild & Wacky Meerkat
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Frank, CAS would not create a toasty yummy smell inside the car. ;)

FYI, Check with John Monnin. I believe he bought a slew of the capacitors that are prone to burn out on our ECUS.

Thread is here:

http://209.58.199.225/vbb/showthread.php?s=&threadid=47505

You most likely can have that repaired for only a handful of dollars, presuming it's ONLY the caps. I think one gent offered to solder the whole thing up for $100, shipped, if you felt uncomfortable doing it yourself, or could not find a local electronics place to do it for you.

Also, I've heard the ECU's from the 91 are most prone to this problem btw. So, I'm thinking that might really be it. I'm half hoping that the frequency of dead cap's in the ECU dropped by the end of 91, cuz... uh... I have a 92. :D

Good luck dude.

Elton
 

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More Than Meets the Eye
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http://www.foreignecurepair.com - lots of satisfied DSM and 3Si customers.

I'd double-check everything else first. As a quick way to test if it's in any way related to the intake (blown hoses, etc), unplug the MAS. If it starts then, you've got an intake leak / blown Y pipe.
 

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Oops,
Just read my post. Guess I shoulda been a little more awake when I posted my answer. :p
 

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Mr. Bill

Jump on AIM and scream at me......"OhioSpyderman".

Im with the others on the ECU train.....and I think I can help you get a cheap one.

Bob.
 
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