Which car received the most impressive mid-cycle update?

The 1998 Mitsubishi Montero: A Mid-Cycle Reinvention

Car enthusiasts are always curious about mid-cycle updates, which often bring significant changes to the design or features of a particular model before a complete redesign. Today, we take a closer look at one of the most beloved mid-cycle refreshes in automotive history—the 1998 Mitsubishi Montero.

The Montero, known as the Pajero in non-U.S. markets, was first introduced in the 1980s and underwent a significant transformation in its second generation. The first-generation trucks had a classic “square body, round lights” styling that was typical of off-road-oriented SUVs at the time. While attractive, it lacked distinctiveness.

In the early ’90s, the second-generation Pajero evolved into a more rounded and sophisticated SUV, aligning with Mitsubishi’s vision to stand out in the competitive family SUV segment. The 1992-1997 Monteros featured a simple silhouette with visually interesting details like small vents and body cladding pieces.

However, it was the 1998 mid-cycle refresh that truly elevated the Montero’s design to something remarkable. With spectacular flares added to the front and rear fenders, the Gen 2.5 Montero, as it is known among enthusiasts, boasted a beautiful body sculpture that integrated the area over the wheels on the sides and rear quarter panel. This upgrade dramatically advanced the vehicle’s design without abandoning what was good about the original.

But the 1998 update wasn’t just about design. There were also tweaks to the interior and transmission, making it a well-rounded improvement that caught the attention of car enthusiasts around the world.

One of the most ardent supporters of the 1998 Mitsubishi Montero is Andrew P. Collins, who frequently showcases his beloved vehicle on Instagram. Collins, who is passionate about his 1998 Montero, believes that it is one of the best-looking SUVs to ever hit the roads. His passion is evident through the photos of his Montero that he shares on Instagram, highlighting its unique design and features.

The second-generation Montero in the U.S. market underwent a remarkable transformation with its mid-cycle refresh, leaving a lasting impression on car enthusiasts. The facelift not only enhanced the vehicle’s design but also brought significant improvements to its overall performance and appeal.

It’s worth noting that while the two-door Pajero EVO is objectively cooler, the 1998-2000 refresh of the second-generation Montero for the U.S. market stands as one of the most visually appealing SUVs.

The impact of the 1998 mid-cycle refresh on the Montero raises an important question—what other car upgrades have had such a profound impact on automotive history? It is evident that the 1998 Mitsubishi Montero holds a special place in the hearts of car enthusiasts, and its mid-cycle reinvention serves as a testament to the lasting impact of well-executed automotive upgrades.

In conclusion, the 1998 mid-cycle refresh of the Mitsubishi Montero stands as one of the most iconic updates in automotive history, showcasing the powerful impact of thoughtful design enhancements and performance improvements. As car enthusiasts continue to appreciate the significance of this refresh, it prompts an exploration of other notable car upgrades that have left a lasting mark on the automotive industry.