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Cheap, Low-Mile Starquest: 1982 Mitsubishi Starion Turbo

In the past, Mitsubishi offered a variety of stylish and sporty vehicles, with the Starion being one of the most unique options available from the manufacturer. The turbocharged, rear-wheel-drive sports car was also sold under the Chrysler, Dodge, and Plymouth brands as the Conquest, resulting in the “Starquest” nickname among fans of the vehicle. Barn Finds reader Cameron E. Jensen found this 1982 Mitsubishi Starion Turbo here on Facebook Marketplace, and it seems like a promising project for anyone seeking an earlier, “narrowbody” version of the Starion.

This example is available in Idaho Falls, Idaho. The advertisement features poor quality photos and also does not specify any information on the vehicle’s title status, but the seller does mention that this Mitsubishi runs well.

The exterior of this Starion has faded paint and some other blemishes, but it only adds to the character of the sports car. I love the subtle, yet sporty exterior design features, such as the hood scoop, the gradient maroon lines, and the “turbo” badging. Last but not least, this Starion features aftermarket wheels with good tires.

Inside the cabin, you’ll find a maroon theme, which nicely complements the exterior graphics. The interior could use a cleaning, but it shows promise – everything appears to be original, and items such as the dashboard and seats have very little wear.

Mitsubishi’s 4G54 engine is under the hood, which is a turbocharged, 2.6-liter 4-cylinder mill. This example utilizes a 5-speed manual transmission to drive the rear wheels, and the drivetrain only has 47,346 miles on it. The seller mentions that it has a straight-piped exhaust, but does not specify if this Starion has any other modifications.

For the reasonable price of $1,250 or best offer, this distinct Mitsubishi could be yours. Does this low-mile Starion seem like an appealing project, or would you pass on this DSM predecessor?


  1. Nevadahalfrack Nevadahalfrack Member

    Very underrated car during its time as I remember. Chrysler sold it as the TSi under Dodge and Plymouth I think.
    These in the later (OverFender?) configuration with the wide body, hot turbo and intercooler surprised a lot of SCCA folks-especially of you used the drivetrain and suspension out of a wrecked TSi in a Mits pickup truck! Some engineer figured out the loophole in the rules and put that together with great success at the local (Reno) Autocross course.. I think that later gave way to a 13B rotary and suspension from an RX7 in a Mazda pickup!
    It was suspected he’d been involved with NASCAR before coming to us and knew how to find holes in engineering specs for race cars.

    How about it, Wayne-do you recall his name?

    If this runs decently it’d be a fun commuter-the Millennials would be wondering why an electronic firm was making cars.. and no clue as to the fighter planes they made during WW2.

    Like 5
    • Todd Cook

      Remember one at Harrah’s being a prize in 83…man I drooled over that car as a young guy. Aggressive styling for the time, TURBO!…man could it get better? Yeah probably, but who cared; it looked fast just sitting on the platform!

      Like 5
    • Chris

      The Mitsubishi Zero on wheels. That what my dad called my 87.

  2. Stangalang

    These cars were fairly easy v8 swaps back in the day..we did quite a few for street and strip pretty simple to stiffen up the substructure too. I’d probably leave this one alone and fix it up..reminds me of my old conquest ( 302 V8 of course)

    Like 2
  3. Cooter914 Cooter914 Member

    That dash channels more “Sapporo” than Conquest. My first ride was a 78 Plymouth Sapporo. Picture the same car without the turbo and a half vinyl roof. The TSi was and still is a bucket list car for me. Closest I ever got was driving one as a demo at a used lot I worked at around 89 or 90.

    Like 1
    • Superdessucke

      That makes sense considering this car was a successor to the Galant Lambda (sold as the Sapporo/Challenger in the U.S.) and used the same chassis.

      Like 1
  4. Stangalang

    I bought my conquest with a knocking engine just for a 302 swap and loved it..wish I still had it..scary fast and fun

  5. Bob C.

    I remember there were a few of these around, but not many. Pretty much a forgotten 80s car that just didn’t catch on liked they hoped. To some, it was a cheaper alternative to a Nissan 300z. I used to work with girl who had one and she had to be about 6 ft 2. I used to wonder how she could get in and out so easily.

  6. PairsNPaint

    $1250 for a running, driving, rear drive turbo 5-speed? What, no pictures of where it was probably bashed in in the rear?

    Like 5
  7. Keith D.

    These are the worst pictures I’ve ever seen in my life Ugh!

  8. chrlsful

    wrkin on these Mitus all ways reminded me of motorcycles – internal oddities, unusual work-a-rounds, clear plastic tubes as internal engine parts, reliance on lill clips

  9. giorgitd

    I’ve never looked at a FB Marketplace vehicle ad. One picture? No description, just a list of features? Meh. I had forgotten about the narrow bodies since the widebodies has power and tech features – Wheeler Dealers refurbed a wide body, I think, and required some fixes to the electronic features. The narrow bodies, even with the turbo, did not make huge HP from the 2.6L (I think(. The low miles makes this interesting, but, c’mon, this is next to zero info…

  10. Nessy

    The Starion was really ahead of it’s time when it came out to compete with the Supra, Datsun Z and the RX7. This Starion is the rare first year 1983 model as there was no 1982 model. This was also the only year with the hood vents and the center hood duct. Starion and Conquest fans will pay serious money on the rare occasion when an 83 hood comes up for sale. The 83 hood alone in good condition can bring over 500. This car is a gift at 1250. Something must be really wrong with it and watch out for floor rust. My now 86 year old dad bought one new when he turned 50 and was the first in our entire county to have a Starion. Nobody could figure out what it was. He bought it after his two other brothers bought a Supra and a 280ZX a few months before so he wanted something completely new. That car was very quick and handled like it was glued to the road. We still have the Starion today sitting in the garage. Wonderful car and wonderful times.

    Like 6
  11. Bob McK Member

    I think this is the first ad I have ever seen of a car covered with ice, sitting in the snow. Good luck to the seller…

  12. Brittany Wadsworth

    This is actually my ad on FB Marketplace! I apologize for the horrible pictures guys! I will take some more tonight and get them up. There is nothing wrong with the car, and I do have a clean title! I am actually selling it for an 81 year old man, who I believe has owned it for most of its life. I don’t know a lot about these cars, or what the value is so please tell me if I am asking a fair price or not! The mileage is really low, only 47 thousand! It’s been sitting for about a year I believe. As far as I can see, there’s only a little bit of rust on it. It’s never been wrecked, there are only a couple little dings on the body. It’s got new tires on it. My husband just dropped the fuel tank and cleaned out the rust and gunk from sitting, and replaced the fuel filter. He flushed the radiator and put fresh antifreeze in it. He put a newer battery in it, and changed the spark plugs and a couple of hoses under the hood. And he also vacuumed it out and cleaned up the interior as well. Which is in pretty good shape too! The original floor mats are even still there! She’s running good now, and is ready to go!

    Like 2
    • Andrew Wiegert

      Hello Brittany, I was wondering if the Starion was still available? I have an 89 and would love to have the first and last years of this unique car!

  13. Brittany Wadsworth

    I’ve got more pictures up now!

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