RexSeven UltraDork
7/6/13 1:57 a.m.

My old winter beater '93 Eclipse GSX has been sold. It was pretty much totally rotted out and falling apart. Acceptable (maybe) for a project/rally-x/LeChump car, not so much for something I relied on to get me to and from work through one of the nastiest winters New England has seen in a long time.

I'm considering a 1998-up Rodeo/Passport V-6 or Axiom to replace it. They sound like decently reliable and tough little trucks according to this old thread.

One question, though. I found this Rodeo on CL:

Did the V-6 Rodeos come with a manual transmission? I know the I-4 Rodeos and Amigos did, but the V-6 Amigos were automatic-only, which makes me wonder if the Rodeos were the same way. How are the manuals on these things in terms of durability and how they shift?

06HHR Reader
7/6/13 2:23 a.m.

Well, my stepson has an I-4 with a five speed, and he hasn't been able to kill it yet despite his best efforts. I've heard there are 1998 and later 5-speed V6 models out there, but I've never seen one personally. I have seen plenty of V6 models laid up with head gasket and timing belt issues (the Isuzu V6, not the GM) so I've steered clear of those as a rule. Even when offered at fire sale prices ($500 or less with no rust or other issues). They really are solid trucks though, the only weak spot I've seen is with the V6, not that the I-4 is that great, but it seems to last longer..

octavious Reader
7/6/13 6:04 a.m.

I had an older body style 1995 Rodeo V6 manual 4x4, as a dumb college kid. I neglected and beat the snot out of that thing and it just took it and keep going. Mine had almost 300k miles on it when I finally got rid of it. I loved that thing. As far as how it shifted it was pretty durable, I tried to drive over everything in mine, and I abused the clutch, but it kept going. I do remember mine had manual windows and locks so I had fewer electronics to mess with. I and State Trooper Bird in Georgia can also attest that my Rodeo could really scoot...

I looked at the newer ones and I think they have more issues than the older ones. Some would argue it was because the newer ones had more GM parts... But with GM or Isuzu parts, i think the build quality just wasn't as good. I don't ever remember seeing any of the second body style with the V6 and the manual, but I like it.

JohnRW1621 PowerDork
7/6/13 7:33 a.m.
RexSeven wrote: Did the V-6 Rodeos come with a manual transmission ...but the V-6 Amigos were automatic only

One solution for verifying engine trans combinations is to look at the EPA website, If the combination existed it would then be given an mpg rating.
Sure enough, it existed at a mpg rating of 16/17/19.

The website also shows that Amigos were also rated with manual trans V6's. Actually, for 1998 the Amigo V6 only came with manual trans. An auto trans V6 was not offered until 1999.

That looks like a lot of vehicle and a good buy for the $2k being asked.

Curmudgeon MegaDork
7/6/13 7:57 a.m.

Yep, the Rodeo, Amigo and Rodeo Sport (replaced the Amigo) were available with the V6/MT combo all they way through the end of production in 2004. The combo became more rare in the later years, though.

They are tough trucks; the only real thing to look out for is sludging on the earlier engines (1998-2000). Look in the oil fill hole: gold = good, red or black = bad. It wasn't just Isuzu BTW, everybody had problems at the time. The early engines had a plastic PCV valve, the later ones a metal valve. There were a good many early engine replaced under warranty that were retrofitted with the later PCV valves.

AFAIK the Axiom was never available with a M/T or at least I never saw one. Troopers were, though. On those: some of the GM 4L30 transmissions had a nasty habit of popping a servo cover out and dumping the fluid, that was pretty much a 2003 only thing IIRC and the fix was to change the snap ring to a different design. IIRC the original ring was a round wire type, the replacement was a flat stamped type. Otherwise solid trucks. I'd like to have an Axiom XS myself.

ckosacranoid Dork
7/6/13 3:30 p.m.

i just junked a 98 rodeo with a v6 and an auto. it ran great and not magir issues beyond fixing things like raditor, breaks, and stuff like that. mine had 228,000 when i bought it and had 242,00 when i got rid of it last month and still ran very well. the frame rotted oout from under it. i would very much go under it and really look at the frame. the body was great, just the frame was swiss cheese.

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