Mitsubishi issued a recall for my car. Why won’t it pay for the repair?

Photo of author

By Christopher Elliott

A critical part of Jaimin Patel’s Mitsubishi Lancer is corroded. Although he pays for the repair, Mitsubishi ultimately recalls the component. Why won’t the company cover his costs?


My 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer had a corroded front cross member. I contacted Mitsubishi in 2019, and a representative suggested I repair the car myself because there was no recall. But he advised me to keep the documents for reimbursement if there is any recall in the future. 

Fast forward to mid-2020, when Mitsubishi issued a recall for the same part. 

I submitted all the paperwork in early 2021 and have been waiting for my reimbursement. I have called Mitsubishi almost every month to get my status. In early 2022, a representative said the process was “complete” and that I would hear from a case manager soon. But so far, nothing. Can you get Mitsubishi to pay me the $1,460 it owes me? — Jaimin Patel, Bartlett, Ill.


Mitsubishi should have paid for the repair the first time you brought this to the company’s attention. The cross member is an essential component of your Lancer. It’s bolted to the vehicle’s underside, where it supports the engine and transmission and aids the suspension system by maintaining stability. A rusting cross member can lead to a catastrophic problem with your car.

But wait, wasn’t your car out of warranty? Technically, yes. But if a Mitsubishi rep asked you to keep the repair records in case it recalled the part, it means there were other cross member problems — and a recall was likely. (Related: Can you help me with this Mitsubishi recall, please?)

Auto manufacturers like to conduct recall repairs on their terms instead of getting their owners to do the repairs and sending them the bill. That may have delayed your initial payment. You had gone to an outside repair facility (at the recommendation of Mitsubishi), which meant your claim needed to be reviewed and approved manually. There might have been a pandemic delay, too, since this incident happened between 2019 and 2022. But ultimately, there’s no excuse for making you wait more than two years for a check. (Here’s our guide to resolving your consumer problem.)

I list the names, numbers and email addresses of key Mitsubishi customer service executives on this site. A brief, polite email to one of them might have jump-started the refund process. Calling Mitsubishi every month was less effective since it doesn’t create a paper trail, and a company can easily ignore any promise made by phone.

Travel Leaders Group is transforming travel through its progressive approach toward each unique travel experience. Travel Leaders Group assists millions of travelers through its leisure, business and network travel operations under a variety of diversified divisions and brands, including All Aboard Travel, Andrew Harper Travel, Colletts Travel, Corporate Travel Services, CruCon Cruise Outlet, Cruise Specialists, Nexion, Protravel International,, Travel Leaders Corporate, Travel Leaders Network and Tzell Travel Group, and its merger with ALTOUR. With more than 7,000 agency locations and 52,000 travel advisors, Travel Leaders Group ranks as one of the industry’s largest retail travel agency companies.

My advocacy team and I contacted Mitsubishi on your behalf. A claim manager called you with some good news: Mitsubishi finally approved your claim. The car manufacturer didn’t pay out the entire claim, but it covered the recalled item and repair, which you have indicated you’re happy with.

Photo of author

Christopher Elliott

Christopher Elliott is the founder of Elliott Advocacy, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that empowers consumers to solve their problems and helps those who can't. He's the author of numerous books on consumer advocacy and writes three nationally syndicated columns. He also publishes the Elliott Report, a news site for consumers, and Elliott Confidential, a critically acclaimed newsletter about customer service. If you have a consumer problem you can't solve, contact him directly through his advocacy website. You can also follow him on X, Facebook, and LinkedIn, or sign up for his daily newsletter. He is based in Panamá City.

Related Posts