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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm planning the purchase of either a 4Runner or Pathfinder to use for camping/off road trips exclusively. Both seem like nice, capable vehicles, with good reliability records. Nice 4Runners are selling for $8-10k and Pathfinders $5-7k, in my area.
To anyone with experience with these vehicles. Is the price premium for a 4Runner justified? Why?
TIA
 

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Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (PoorHouse)

I think they are pretty reliable vehicles. They certainly keep their value, i'm just checking out a few here in Canada. For example, a 92' model ranges from 10K-14K

edit: i'm talking about the 4runner


[Modified by VWVancouver, 4:19 PM 1-24-2003]
 

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Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (PoorHouse)

After 9 years and 143,000 miles with a Pathfinder, it is my opinion that they are pretty good trucks, especially considering most of their engineering took place in the mid-'80s. It certainly doesn't feel new anymore but the paint and interior still look good, rattles and other undue noises are at a minimum and the mechanicals have been robust. Its not fast but decent enough for what it is and the steering and brake feel are superior to that of same-era trucks/SUVs that I've driven.
However, I have no experience with a similar model-year 4Runner to compare it to.


[Modified by Lackey, 6:15 PM 1-24-2003]
 

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My friend had a '94 4 door 5 speed and it was a very good truck, reliable and tough off road (for what he did, which wasn't the Baha mind you).
Last summer he and his wife were house sitting and the homeowner told him he could bomb around in his old 87 2 door Pathfinder all he wanted. Even with 230,000 is still was a pretty decent truck. He offered to buy it when the homeowner got back, but the guy refused.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (Lackey)

Thanks for the input. I haven't heard anything bad about either vehicle. I can't find a reason to justify the extra $ for a 4Runner. Feels like I'm missing something...
 

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Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (PoorHouse)

Can't explain the price difference, necessarily, but Toyotas of that vintage had higher demand new and probably have higher demand used. Toyota just has that bulletproof reputation, and people are willing to pay for it.
I won't say anything bad about either vehicle, but as the former owner of a '95 4runner, it would have my vote. If you intend to modify your vehicle for off road use at all, Toyota has vastly bigger aftermarket support and communities of enthusiast who can help you keep things in top shape. Also the 4runner is body on frame construction and I *think* the Pathfinders were unibody by the years you're looking at. (Current ones are, but not positive about the earlier ones). In my experience, ladder on frame construction holds up better off road.
Toyota's IFS suspension is a superior design, IMO, because the torsion bars are tucked up in the frame rails, while the Nissan's hang down low where they can get in harms way.
Toyota has more Cargo capacity.
If you can find a good low mileage 4runner with the v6 (and check to make sure it either doesn't fall in the headgasket recall program or has had the work done) and a 5 speed, you'll have a darn good vehicle.
I drove my '95 4runer for 75K without a problem, including a 16 week trip from Seattle to Alaska, which included 4,000+ miles of dirt roads including the Dalton Hwy. roundtrip to Prudhoe Bay. Even after this, it had fewer rattles than any other car I've ever owned. I only sold it because I was tired of its low power. Should have just kept it.
Good luck.
 

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Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (art vandelet)

I remember reading something about the pre-97 pathfinders had poor roll-over resistance and weak roof support (even compared to other suv's). Might want to check into that...
 

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Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (CarLuvrSD)

quote:[HR][/HR]Neither, very unsafe! I've seen to many tip over.
[HR][/HR]​

Boo-frickity-Hoo. If he is a good driver, than it won't tip over. If he's a bad driver, than you can worry.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (Cubster)

quote:[HR][/HR]If you are spending that kind of money why not do a Landcruiser?[HR][/HR]​
I just sold a 1984 FJ60 to purchase one of these vehicles.
If you mean an newer Cruiser, I ruled out FJ62 or FJ80 as the combination of the 3FE motor and auto trans is dissapointing. I would like a FZJ80 with factory lockers but they are out of my price range.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (CarLuvrSD)

quote:[HR][/HR]Neither, very unsafe! I've seen to many tip over.
[HR][/HR]​
Sure, this is true of all SUV's. But, to get some places you've got to have the clearance.
If you've read your owners manual you will be warned that, "these vehicles will handle differently than a car."
Be aware = Rubber side down http://****************.com/smile/emthup.gif
 

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Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (art vandelet)

quote:[HR][/HR]Can't explain the price difference, necessarily, but Toyotas of that vintage had higher demand new and probably have higher demand used. Toyota just has that bulletproof reputation, and people are willing to pay for it.[HR][/HR]​
Agreed...sometimes a good reputation isn't a good thing to a used car buyer, as it can inflate the price dramatically. Such was the case with the purchase of our work truck, a 1991 Nissan, 4 cyl, 5sp. No problems, a great truck--I'm sure it's at least as good as a comparable Toyota, but it was quite a bit cheaper in the used market.
FYI, 4runner=Toyota truck based, Pathfinder=Nissan truck based. Most of the comments on either truck will apply to the SUV version thereof.
My vote, considering money doesn't grow on trees, is Nissan http://****************.com/smile/emthup.gif
 

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Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (Brad Jar)

i see old pathfinders at work all the time with rust, trans problems, and engine problems. its rare i see one in good condition (i go through about 500 cars a month, depending on the time of the year). the interiors are usually busted too. im not saying there arent nice ones out there but my experience with them hasnt been that good.
on the other hand, i havent come across a bad 4runner yet. they demand more money because they are toyotas. they have the reputation of being extremely reliable and tough. if it was me, i would look for a 4runner before i looked for a pathfinder. however, i am almost 100% sure you cant get a 4runner with a 5 speed. for offroading you want a manual trans because you can more effectively use the engine as a break when going down steep grades http://****************.com/smile/emthup.gif
 

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Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (art vandelet)

quote:[HR][/HR]I won't say anything bad about either vehicle, but as the former owner of a '95 4runner, it would have my vote. If you intend to modify your vehicle for off road use at all, Toyota has vastly bigger aftermarket support and communities of enthusiast who can help you keep things in top shape. Also the 4runner is body on frame construction and I *think* the Pathfinders were unibody by the years you're looking at. (Current ones are, but not positive about the earlier ones). In my experience, ladder on frame construction holds up better off road.[HR][/HR]​
That's for damn sure. There's practically nothing available for the Pathfinder. At least, that's what my admittedly casual search has turned up.
The Pathfinder, however, was body-on-frame. It wasn't until the MY96 Pathfinders that they switched to unibody.

I would disagree with statements above in this thread about the Pathfinder and 4Runner being unstable. While you don't treat them like Miatas, they're certainly not going to present you with any stability issues.
 

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Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (PoorHouse)

quote:[HR][/HR]Sure, this is true of all SUV's. But, to get some places you've got to have the clearance.

Be aware = Rubber side down http://****************.com/smile/emthup.gif [HR][/HR]​
Not all of them! Lets see, we have the Allroad and it has lots of clearance. The Touarreg, and me thinks the Volvo X90 has some Gyro deelyboppers to keep it stable.
Npw, I know whatyo are thinking, and I'm quite aware that they are in different price range than he is looking in. I'm just trying to say that you need to be a little more careful that what you are saying is corect if you are going to PICK ON ME!

My cousin just got rid of her 4 Runner and I am so thankful. I woried about her tumbling over in it with my cute little nephew in it. Bryce, he's so cute.

If that's what you want, then don't come crying to me when you tip over!
 

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Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (CarLuvrSD)

we've had our 92 4runner for about 8 years nows, and the car has been nothing but reliable, we take it off-roading on a regular basis and we have yet to experince any trouble. i cant say anything about the pathfinder being that i havent owned one. if u buy a well kept 4runner u will probably not be dissapointed http://****************.com/smile/emthup.gif
 

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Re: Pre 96 4Runner or Pathfinder? Why? (Lankyleo)

I vote neither. You can buy a halfway decent 1995 GM S series SUV for the same price or less, and have more capability and the 4.3L V6.
Its a truck. not a p3nis extension. The Toyota is mroe becaise you are paying for a name. WHen it comes to trucks, I refuse to pay for a name.
Of the two, I say Nissan, but I would likely go Domestic before import on an SUV.
 
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