1992 Dodge Colt

Engine Performance problem
1992 Dodge Colt 4 cyl Front Wheel Drive Manual 260K miles

I'm working on my son's 92 colt with the 1.5 mitsu engine.
Engine died a week ago at which time I checked and no spark. I replaced it with a new/not reman distributor which has the coil etc built in.

Car fired right up.

Set the timing as per spec. With wire grounded.

Rough/low idle
While holding the throttle at @1500 the engine sounds like it's detonating. By retarding the distributor while holding the rpm I can kill the detonation noise.

Plugs are brand new just installed with 0 miles. Running for 10 minutes or so the plugs are sooty.

Compression is 175 on all 4.

Timing belt is not new but I checked all marks and they line up perfectly. Sooty condensatioin coming out of tail pipe.

No cracked hoses. It doesn't have an EGR.

Any ideas?

Thanks. John
May 29, 2008.

John: Is there any smoke from the exhaust? Also, have you checked the temp sensor?