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Posted: 8/19/2004 1:58:05 PM EDT
Just got a new job. I'm going to be working as a security officer (Yeah, shut up, it pays 10.25 hr and that's damn good for only my second job) and need something more reliable than my Jetta. Not that I'm going to get rid of it, but I need something more reliable with 4 wheel drive. Right now I'm thinking Dodge Dakota or a Toyota Pickup. Has to have decent gas mileage, truely off road capable, damn reliable, easy to work on myself, and not too expensive to fix when it breaks. Does anybody have any suggestions as to make/model/year. Also, I don't want to spend more than 7.5k on it, preferably less.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 2:01:03 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/19/2004 2:06:59 PM EDT by Burley]
Toyota, end of discussion.

ETA - Get a 4 cylinder, early 90's vintage. Check the bed carefully for rust.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 2:01:33 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/19/2004 2:01:53 PM EDT by brushdog]
I don't know, but if you find it, let me know cause I want one too.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 2:03:01 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 2:03:23 PM EDT
forget toyota go Ford!! I love my v8 ford f-150. So much power and torque,you can't go wrong with a ford.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 2:03:26 PM EDT
you should be able to pick up a late 90s mazda or ford ranger for that price. i just got a 95 ranger with the 4.0L, power everything for under $4000 the only thing it doesn't have is 4wheel drive.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 2:09:42 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 2:46:58 PM EDT
Don't buy a Dodge. I had a 98 1500 4x4 & I had more mickey mouse shit go wrong with it. Go with Toyota, all the way. Get at least a V6 if not a V8 Tundra.

My .o2
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 3:05:02 PM EDT

Originally Posted By BobCole:
Don't buy a Dodge. I had a 98 1500 4x4 & I had more mickey mouse shit go wrong with it. Go with Toyota, all the way. Get at least a V6 if not a V8 Tundra.

My .o2

Dakotas are a POS, Go with the Toyota, or maybe a small SUV or Jeep.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 5:06:20 PM EDT
Toyota Tacoma?
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 5:08:04 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 5:09:10 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 5:11:46 PM EDT

Originally Posted By thebeekeeper1:

Originally Posted By HighCaliber:
Toyota Tacoma?

That's the small one. It's what I've had times three. My brother has a Tundra and loves it.

yes i have one it is not cheap but it drives better them my moms Lincoln. she even likes it better and she is 63 years old
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 5:13:15 PM EDT
Toyotas are known for their reliability, but diesels sound sexier.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 5:15:59 PM EDT
I'd avoid the older Dodge's. Engine good, tranny weak.

For a good work truck, honestly I'd shop around and find an old Dodge Powerwagon or Chevy Heavy Half. There old, there built like a tank and EASILY fixable.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 5:23:06 PM EDT
Go for the Taco. They are very reliable and there's tons of aftermarket parts available to really get them set up nicely.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 5:47:54 PM EDT

Originally Posted By BobCole:
Don't buy a Dodge. I had a 98 97 1500 4x4 & I had more mickey mouse shit go wrong with it. Go with Toyota FORD, all the way.

My .o2

+1 (with edits)
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 5:50:16 PM EDT
Do yourself a favor....Toyota.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 5:55:57 PM EDT
full size I'ld probably go for an early 90s late 80s Chevy. Not raised or otherwise trashed by some dolt. Compact - Toyota.

Avoid anything raised more than a few inches, raisng p/u's has got to be the single most important thing involved in keeping mechanics in work.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 6:24:28 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/19/2004 6:26:46 PM EDT by DriftPunch]
I was searching for a secondary vehicle last year to replace my 1988 S10 (bow heads). The requirements were that it had to be full sized, 4wd, and have an 8 foot bed. Ford or GM were the only ones considered. It's difficult to find something cheap, and the popularity of extended cabs over the last 10 years really reduces the number of 8 foot beds. After looking at some disasters, I stumbled upon a 1994 GMC K1500 (TBI 350) that fit the bill nicely. The key was the condition. In addition to being very clean, it was BONE STOCK. This is important because while no guarantee, it indicates that noboby has fucked with it or abused it. It even already had a decent fiberglass shell which was going to be manditory for me.

There is only one design problem, which is a GIANT 54 FOOT TURNING CIRCLE. No U-turns for DriftPunch. Fuel consumption is a bearable 15mpg with 80% highway driving, and goes to 17 at 100% highway. If I chose to drive it hard, its mileage will plummet. If you found one in decent condition, it would probably do you well.

The hardcore boys frown on them because they are probably the least capable off road of the big 3. However, it doesn't matter, because it's a 4wd pickup, not an off road vehicle. The real beef is more likely that the IFS makes it very difficult to and prep for off road use.

I also have a 1999 4Runner, and it's the best vehicle I've ever owned although it's small inside, and rides hard. I'd really recommend this one, but you won't find one for under $7500.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 7:07:15 PM EDT
I just put new rubber today on my 1989 Toyota 4WD. It has the 22RE motor (one of the best ever designed) and I turned 193K last week on it. Doesn't leak or burn ANY oil.

Runs and sounds so good I don't know whether to enter it in the Indy 500 or the Phoenix Philharmonic.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 7:10:42 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 10:44:42 PM EDT
get a taco......the dakota are shitty offroad...heeps are excellent 4wheelers but high risk of getting stranded on trails due to problems that it's always been having.

don't get the tundra.....if you're into hauling then get it, but if 4wheeling is #1 get the taco or even the older 4cyc. models......not that much power but it would not fail to start on you.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 10:46:42 PM EDT
you mentioned getting good gas mileage, so that eliminates the dakota.
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 11:29:29 PM EDT
Link Posted: 8/19/2004 11:53:09 PM EDT
My old Dodge Ram 2500:

had to sell to pay for college. Damn i miss that truck.
Link Posted: 8/20/2004 12:19:57 AM EDT
Easy, Toyota.

While some people love to be patriotic and buy Domestic, but dont realize that Toyota is more American now than Ford. Ever check the stickers? Toyota parts are mostly American made (with most trannies coming from Japan) and assembled in America. Where Ford is mostly parts from Canada & Mexico, and assembled in Mexico.

Its just a name game nowdays! Doesnt matter what you buy, check the sticker and find out where your money is going.
Link Posted: 8/20/2004 1:47:26 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/20/2004 2:43:42 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/20/2004 2:56:19 AM EDT
I don't like little trucks, and I drive an F150 right now. But for wha tyou want it sounds like the Tacoma would be hard to beat. Hell, now that I'm living in a truck unfriendly environment, I've thought of going with a 4-door prerunner myself.
Link Posted: 8/20/2004 5:03:11 PM EDT
Thanks for all the replies. I was leaning towards the Toyota already because some of my friends are toyota guys, but I just wanted to see if any of you had some other ideas. It wont happen for at least a few months cause I want to save up and get some other stuff first (that's right, you guessed it, guns). It will be a second vehicle to my Jetta. I have heard that auto trannies are better for off road, is that true? How sturdy are the Toyota auto and manual trannies?
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