Monocoque Construction

Submitted: Saturday, Sep 16, 2006 at 19:36

phillip owen

Hi all,

Looking at buying the current model Pajero or Prado, however, I am not sure about the monocoque chassis construction. Some people I talk to say they are not bad, while others disagree with the notion of a 4WD with no chassis.

Just wondering how other people find the design in off road conditions? Mainly looking at sand and forest trails, but could get more serious.
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AnswerID: 194881   Submitted: Saturday, Sep 16, 2006 at 22:34

Wizard2 replied:

Prado are still the old fashion chassis rail type frame not monocoque, unlike the Pajero.
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FollowupID: 453076   Submitted: Sunday, Sep 17, 2006 at 23:10

GaryInOz (Vic) posted:

Pajero and for that matter Discos and Rangies have longditudinal chassis members hidden within the monocoque with a couple of major crossmembers included, in effect "semi-monocoque" in construction. They are more than satisfactory strength wise. They certainly do not have the lightweight softroader problems with longditudinal strength.

Talk to the people that repair them (Panel beaters). The semi-monocoque can be more difficult to repair that a straight chassis, as you would expect, but certainly not impossible.
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AnswerID: 194888   Submitted: Sunday, Sep 17, 2006 at 03:15

marq replied:

The monocoque will have less flex compared to the Prado and there is no problem with strength.

The only problem with monocoque is more road noise.
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FollowupID: 453029   Submitted: Sunday, Sep 17, 2006 at 20:08

Richard W (NSW) posted:

I went from an NM Paj to a 100 series and found the 100 series much quieter but only with the windows shut.
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AnswerID: 194954   Submitted: Sunday, Sep 17, 2006 at 19:51

Kiwi Kia replied:

Do you want to hang any extras on the vehicle? Have a look underneath and see if you can find a suitably strong place to mount a 10,000 lb recovery hook, tow bar or front protection bar of any type.

Thats the difference between monocoque and chassis type construction !
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FollowupID: 453031   Submitted: Sunday, Sep 17, 2006 at 20:12

Richard W (NSW) posted:

Had a Hayman Reece towbar on my previous NM which I used to snatch plenty of vehicles and a nudge bar which took the impact of a roo at 100kph.
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AnswerID: 194979   Submitted: Sunday, Sep 17, 2006 at 21:55

Member - Tim replied:

The biggest difference you are going to see depends on how "serious" you are about 4wding. If you want to increase the height by more than a couple of inches then it is harder with the monocoque chassis. For what I want to do I would be more than happy with the new Pajero but some people like to add 6 inches height and climb over house sized boulders and they would be better off with something else. Not sure the Prado would be the best thing for that either since it still has an independent front end but it would get closer than the independent suspension, monocoque Pajero. On the Prado you could put in a body lift and to get it up off the chassis and that could not be done to the Pajero.

Mitsubishi have done tests to prove that the Pajero can be recovered with forces far higher than you would expect in any recovery without damaging the chassis at all so don't believe that it can't be used for that. Bars and recovery points are fine.

I have seen Pajeros, both old and new models, go to the same places as Prados and many other 4wds. Until it gets extreme there is not much to call between many of the makes. Pajero currently has a much better diesel than the Prado but that may change later this year.

Personally I would be looking at what features I can get for what money and if either one does the job I want it to do then I would be looking. The Pajero at all levels comes with traction control etc whereas you have to go almost to the top level to get that in the Prado. I believe the Toyotas generally are overpriced but I know there are a lot of people who disagree. Having owned a Pajero for the last six years I think the percieved toughness of the Toyota is mostly that they have better advertising but yet again I know there are a lot of people who will disagree with that too.

Basically get what suits you best and gives you the best value for that, they are both good vehicles.

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AnswerID: 194984   Submitted: Sunday, Sep 17, 2006 at 22:44

Member - jeff M (SA) replied:

The Pajero is more powerful than the Prado diesel "Now".
Prado is coming out with a new diesel soon and so is Pajero.
Talking to the Mitsy dealer at the field days he say's the Pajero is coming with a
3.5 litre diesel.
Maybe Mitsy will still have more power than the Prado ??
Just have to wait and see.
The Pajero is niosier inside than the Prado I reckon.
I have a 2005 DiD NP and my mate has 2005 Prado diesel.
So we have compared a few things over the last year.
Both go the same places, only thing I made it up big red and he didn't,he tried lot's of times, just run out of legs right near the top.Ha Ha.

Kind Regards Jeff M.
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