Looking for a 4wd vehicle!

Discussion in '4x4's, SUV's and P/U Trucks' started by carrmann, Oct 28, 2011.

  1. carrmann

    carrmann Well-Known Member

    Im moving to alaska in a few months and am tryign to figure out what to get! My truck will not work out up there.. I used to drive it in the winter in NH and it was horrid in snow. I plan on doing some light offroading (hunting, fishing, towing snowmobiles to trails etc), so I have to have a 4wd.

    Any suggestions on what to get? I've looked at a range of vehicles. Does anyone have some experience on here with some larger suvs/trucks? I'm avging about 15mpg with my truck back/forth to work with stop signs and traffic!

    I"ve looked at suburbans/tahoes (and gmc equivalent), ford expeditions (excursions are out, as it looks like the 5.4 is as well cuz it gets horrid mileage), dodge rams/durangos/dakotas

    Any suggetsions/tips/help? I wont be towing anything heavier than a snowmobile trailer with 2 sleds on it so I dont need anything serious.

    Thanks in advance

    Can someone please change the topic by subtracting 'fullsize' please
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2011
  2. rfruth

    rfruth Well-Known Member

    Re: Lookin for a fullsize 4wd vehicle!

    New or used, why full size would a 4wd Escape or a Rav4 do the job ?
     
  3. carrmann

    carrmann Well-Known Member

    Re: Lookin for a fullsize 4wd vehicle!

    im buying used. Rav4 I dont fit in, not sure on towing capacity of escape but I doubt they are in my price range.

    my old man is a car dealer, hecan get me pretty good deals tho. he just picked up a 01 expedition i can buy from him for $1500.
     
  4. PaleMelanesian

    PaleMelanesian Beat the System Staff Member

    Re: Lookin for a 4wd vehicle!

    What about a Subaru wagon?
     
  5. carrmann

    carrmann Well-Known Member

    Re: Lookin for a 4wd vehicle!

    can u tow a couple snowmobiles with it? I need to go sit in one as well, not sure I would fit well! I need to be comfortable lol. Gotta drive it 5k miles to alaska haha. I know they are AWD as well but would they handle some types of off-roading etc?

    Im 6ft 3, 240lbs and I'll be bringing my 90lb husky along as well so interior size is definitely a factor in my decision!!
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2011
  6. southerncannuck

    southerncannuck Well-Known Member

    Re: Lookin for a 4wd vehicle!

    We love our Subaru, and I think it's rated for 3500lbs towing. We average 27 mpg. Heated seats!!!!
     
  7. carrmann

    carrmann Well-Known Member

    Re: Lookin for a 4wd vehicle!

    Thats a possibility, little harder to get one of those cheap as the imports usually bring a lot more $! I will def. look into it tho.
     
  8. carrmann

    carrmann Well-Known Member

    Re: Lookin for a 4wd vehicle!

    looks like i got a pretty good deal on a 03 mercury mountaineer v8 awd
     
  9. 08EscapeHybrid

    08EscapeHybrid Moderator

    Re: Lookin for a 4wd vehicle!

    If you can afford a new vehicle, the new Ford F150 with the Ecoboost engine is supposed to get amazing mileage. If I remember correctly its EPA rated for 27 MPG.
     
  10. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Super Moderator Staff Member

    Re: Lookin for a 4wd vehicle!

    http://fueleconomy.gov/m/GetData.jsp?id=null,32124

    17 mpg combined.
     
  11. carrmann

    carrmann Well-Known Member

    Re: Lookin for a 4wd vehicle!

    no way can I do a new vehicle lol. im lookin to spend less than 5k.
     
  12. 08EscapeHybrid

    08EscapeHybrid Moderator

    I was just talking about them with a friend that works for Ford. I'll have to find out exactly which model was supposed to get that mileage.
     
  13. carrmann

    carrmann Well-Known Member

    maybe a 2wd reg cab short bed? 4wd club cab is gonna lose a lil mpg from theweight etc.

    think the mountaineer fell through! so im still lookin around for a vehiclew ith good reliablilty and good mpg. anything better mpg wise than my ram will make me happy to be honest.
     
  14. 08EscapeHybrid

    08EscapeHybrid Moderator

    Yeah, my 4wd extended cab pickup weighs 3 tons.
     
  15. phoebeisis

    phoebeisis Well-Known Member

    Hmmm, the 96-99 GM 1/2 tons- pickups suburbans-get better FE(5.7) than the equivalent Ford-AND MUCH MUCH better FE than the equivalent Dodge.
    Suburban- length vehicles can carry 4X8 material flat in the back- Explorer Expedition,Yukon,Tahoe length vehicles can't- but they still have the same FE penalty.
    Excursions get horrendous FE(even the diesels) and they have a HORRIBLE RIDE- not as easy to get parts either.
    In Alaska many folks have camper tops on their pickups-snow- so why not get a 8" "bed" covered pickup-a Suburban
    A 150,000 mile 98 Suburban 4x4 will sell for maybe $4500 if it was PRISTINE looking with recently -documented- AT rebuild and maybe AC replace.rebuild also.
    In general 1996-1998 Suburbans-and pickups 4x4 sell for $2500-$3000 in average condition with 180,000 miles or so.
    Obviously avoid those MIDWEST and NE rust buckets- Texas is a good place to buy Suburbans/pickups- very little rust.
    Parts for GMs are relatively cheap and EXTREMELY available.They are REASONABLY easy to work on.
    Many older trucks are reliable- probably survivor bias-trucks that had the good luck to get the good QC and parts just last longer than the lemon.Besides usually the factory mistakes have been repaired on 13 yo vehicles- if they are still running.
    The QC wasn't good for any of the big 3 in the 90's- but in generally the drivetrains of the GMs are reliable-and the FE is a bit better than the Fords.

    A 2000 on GM will cost maybe $2500 more than the 96-99-BUT THE 2000-2001 5.3 is rated EPA- about the same as the 98-99 12/17 2wd.
    The 2000 on do have BETTER BRAKES- 2002(maybe $7000) on you start seeing significantly better FE-2004(maybe $10,000) are rated 2 mpg better CITY- 2007 2MPG better city 3 MPG HY
    But a 2007 will be $20000+

    Yeah get a 1998 or so Chevrolet/GM 1/2 ton Suburban-cheap to buy and reasonably -reliable.Your dad can find you a good one for $2500 or so- near perfect looking well maintained for under $3000-$4000-lotta affluent soccer moms bought them-so they saw very light duty-rarely or never towed-kept pretty looking-dealer maintained-I've never seen anyone try to sell even the best one for more than $5000-so your dad's price will be much lower-they have close to ZERO actual trade in valve in most of the country.
    Charlie
    PS the 4 cyl Four Runners of that vintage will get maybe 50% better FE if you want a smaller vehicle-the V-6 had occasional engine problems-same story on the other Japanese small pickups-they were still small vehicles in the 90's-the 4 cyl versions are adequate and get much better FE than any 1/2 ton.
     
  16. carrmann

    carrmann Well-Known Member

    Thank you phoebeisis!! Im was approaching the same conclusion, tho it was with a tahoe over a suburban (either one is Fine with me lol).

    My father can get Killer deals on most suburbans/tahoes/yukons etc. that roll through the lot for the reason you mentioned... everyone is scared of them cuz of fuel mileage (tho it isnt that bad considering IMO and probably easily overachieved with light effort).

    The mountaineer was a pretty good deal at 2900$ (03, v8, fully loaded, awd, perfect condition) but you win some u lose some!! The expedition was a 2001 5.4 (horrible FE lol) 4x4, but I could have gotten it for 1300$ which was why I was considering it (ran/drove great too).

    Im expecting I will get a 2002+ tahoe/yukon/suburban for around 2500-3500 so thats waht Im shooting for for a full size. I'd be ok with a durango as well (I like those things a lot).

    Good condition older japanese vehicles are hard to come by, they had a lot of issues with rust lol. Plus if they Are nice, they bring a LOT of money haha. But i've got my eyes on the lookout for one of those too!

    Thanks for the input!
     
  17. phoebeisis

    phoebeisis Well-Known Member

    Yeah if you can get the 2002 for $3500-GREAT!! The usual asking price for a 2002 is maybe $7000.
    The 2002 have MUCH BETTER brakes than thr 96-99-and the 2002 5.3FE is at least 1 mpg better city-maybe 8% better than the 5.7's.Some of the early 5.3 have a piston slap type noise- it doesn't effect reliability- but it drives down resale-a good thing if you are a buyer.It isn't actually from wear-not really a problem except when you are a seller.
    Yeah for that price- easy choice- better brakes of the 2000 on is a big plus-Tahoe is a somewhat handier size for garages etc.
    Charlie
     
  18. carrmann

    carrmann Well-Known Member

    Dealer auctions are a great place for me lol. If i had had the money he was going to pick me up a 06 suburban LT 4wd with 60k miles for 7k.

    Good to know on the mpg year range etc. btw I appreciate it!

    Yip, tahoes are a lil smaller and easier to park lol, but Im a beggar haha so I cant be too picky!
     
  19. FXSTi

    FXSTi Well-Known Member

    You might look for an Explorer or Explorer Sportrak with the V-6 and AWD. My wife drives a Sportrak, she does not hypermile but her fcd is usually over 18 mpg. Hers is an '07, which you won't find in your price range, but the older Explorers seem to go cheap. Explorers have that whole reputation for doing back-flips, so make sure to put a little air in the tires.

    Older Toyota pick-ups can be had with 4wd and the 2.2 four cylinder. Plenty of pulling power, decent mileage, and they hold their resale value. The hard part is finding one which hasn't been modified for severe off road use.

    Kirk
     
  20. 08EscapeHybrid

    08EscapeHybrid Moderator

    That is true, there is no trade in value. My 1/2 ton 4x4 is a 98 GMC. The 350 is a solid motor, even with 180,000 miles it runs so smooth and quiet that from 10 feet away you can't hear it idling. I decided to buy the Escape, and keep the GMC as a beater since its cheap to insure, and I won't get anything for selling it. Fuel economy is pretty good (considering), for a 3 ton 4x4 I usually get 18-19 highway and 13-14 city. With 4wd active in the snow I usually get 9-11. My last road trip I took in it I averaged 16 MPG, and that was with the cruise set on 70 MPH with my motorcycle (almost 1,000 pounds) strapped down in the bed.
     

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