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View Full Version : WTB: 100 series (either LC or LX)


Tremek
11-05-2013, 08:58 PM
Hey guys, I have been lurking on ih8mud and other forums for a while now and am finally ready to take the plunge on a 100 series. I have been very excited to begin building an overland and light/medium trail rig and I'm convinced a 100 series is the way to go.

So with that said, what I think I want to find is pretty specific: a 2001 LX 470. I like the projector headlamps of the LX and 2001 was the last year where factory nav was an option (as opposed to in all trucks)... I'd prefer to not be forever saddled with hopelessly dated electronics.

I'd also be interested in an '01 or '02 LC without factory nav; '00+ gives ATRAC which seems desirable for poor traction surfaces and stability control also seems good to have if my wife's driving it on occasion. :) But with the higher incidence of bad transmissions in '00 I'm not sure I want to consider them but am open to input.

Any suggestions or sightings of trucks for sale? There's a few local in Denver that I may go look at... Just missed an '01 at a lot on Colfax this week that was my ideal setup. :( Likewise if you have a truck for sale let me know. Not afraid to fly for the right truck either.

Thanks in advance!

nakman
11-06-2013, 08:43 AM
Welcome! 'round these parts the recommendations tend to be either go old and get a 98-99 with rear locker (then add a front locker), or go 2003+ to get the 5 speed transmission. And still add the front locker:)

IMO getting the right driveline trumps electronics... heck these things still have tape decks. But the 5speed is a +3mpg upgrade most likely, maybe even 5.. big difference between 17 and 12. Just my 2 cents, good luck with the search! will post up if I run across a nice one.

Tremek
11-06-2013, 08:57 AM
nakman, thanks for the welcome and advice! I would totally be open to a '03+ LC without nav, but I know they're rare as hen's teeth.

Point taken about the 5 speed... I'm coming from a twin turbo V8 and a supercharged V8, respectively, so I realize these trucks are going to be dog slow no matter what and the 5 speed would definitely help a little bit. :P Am thinking I may even go to Slee and inquire about their turbo kit once I find the right truck.

AimCOTaco
11-06-2013, 09:13 AM
Or the holy grail is supposed to be the '06 No Nav LC, a rare option that gives the updated front grill/lamps, 5-speed, ATRAC, VVTi and a clean No-Nav dash.

If towing is in the plan the 5-speed makes even more sense.

I'm just fine in 99, would love a 5-speed though.

Caribou Sandstorm
11-06-2013, 09:37 AM
I have been looking for another 100 for a while now.

Your best bet is an 03 or newer. I have an 01, love it but the 5 speed in the 03-07, side airbags, are better all around. And if you mod the 100, you will lose fuel economy, so best to start with an 03 up.

Mine is fully moded, with drawer and fridge always in, just checked mileage yesterday 12 city, so not too bad. Will check highway mileage next week.

They are not that rare, but finding one that fits your liking could be. They are going to be super rare after 07, with less than 2000 sold in the U.S. per year after 2008.

Cars.com is the best right now. Cargurus used to be good but less rigs on their lately. Autotrader ok. CL ok but usually if they are on Cars.com, they are also on CL.

03s are coming way down in price 14-18 depending on mileage. 04-06s are 18-27k depending on mileage. 08s are 35-45 depending in mileage, also these are 200 series.

If Lexus is your cup of choice, add about 4k to the prices above.

I am no expert on these but I seem to know more than any sales guy I have talked to in the last week.

Also what do you want to do with the truck? These are great for family wheeling trips. Very capable but I am not convinced the limited travel of the torsion bar is equivalent to the newer gen IFS or Solid front axel options available.

Hope this helps.

Caribou Sandstorm
11-06-2013, 09:41 AM
Also check Christo's website for the differences between years.

98-99s lockers no ATrac, weak front diffs
2000-07 Atrac no locker, better front diffs, 2000s have tranny issues at 120k
2003-07 5 speed, side airbags, other electronic stuff like Nav, gear ratio different also

Tremek
11-06-2013, 09:55 AM
Part of my challenge here is passing the wife test from an outlay perspective as we're looking to have no payments as we ramp up for saving for a new house... So I think no matter what I'm looking at an 00-02 since the 03+ cost jumps significantly and I'm a cash buyer. If the 4 speed proves unbearable I will look to "trade up" before I get too deep into modding the truck, but its a lot easier to make the case with a slow truck in hand. :) It's funny how varied the pricing is on these trucks.

Luckily also don't have to commute in the truck, so gas mileage isn't really a big concern. If I can somehow scare up a TRD supercharger or figure out a turbo kit, even with the 4 speed, that + gears will probably keep me happy.

Tremek
11-06-2013, 10:27 AM
nakman actually raises a good point re: the 98-99s.

Would I be nuts for having my wife (occasionally) drive around a 5500 lb truck around without traction/stability control in this day & age? We have two kids under 2, too, so I'm slightly concerned about the safety of the truck without ATRAC etc. when it's available on the '00+ trucks. I also hear you re: side airbags on the '03+ but side airbags can actually be dangerous for young kids in car seats in the rear... So conflicted!

Fishy
11-06-2013, 10:59 AM
nakman actually raises a good point re: the 98-99s.

Would I be nuts for having my wife (occasionally) drive around a 5500 lb truck around without traction/stability control in this day & age? We have two kids under 2, too, so I'm slightly concerned about the safety of the truck without ATRAC etc. when it's available on the '00+ trucks. I also hear you re: side airbags on the '03+ but side airbags can actually be dangerous for young kids in car seats in the rear... So conflicted!

Because the kids will sometimes be in the vehicle, I recommend a 01 or newer. The LATCH anchor system wasn't installed until middle production for 2000 model years.

That may not be a big deal for you and this is a huge and safe vehicle either way. IMO, the LATCH makes for a much more secure car seat than a standard belt.

Also, the turbo system is about $7500 and the supercharger is +/- $4000 plus the instal. Obviously the supercharger is more of a DIY, but sourcing everything together is extremely difficult. You could be $10k all in for the turbo, plus the $10-15k you paid for the vehicle.

If you plan on doing some mods/upgrades you may not like the 4spd without regearing. Especially if one of those mods is bigger tires. I had a 20% change in gearing by going to 35s. That's pretty significant and I have the 5spd. I could still pull away from the guys in 4spds going up Floyd Hill. The bad part is I'm to the floor going 40 and they're to the floor going 30. I also wouldn't shy away from a NAV equipped vehicle. There is very little data that shows this is a problem area in any year LC or LX.

OTOH, regardless of what year you buy....... A front locker from TJM or ARB should be at the top of your mod list. It's a proven weak point of the 100 series. I don't think the 2 pinion vs 4 pinion is a valid argument either. The ring gear is known to break on all years. That's $1500-2000+ that should be added to the cost of the vehicle.

Just my .02

Corbet
11-06-2013, 10:59 AM
Personally lack of a 5-speed would be a deal breaker for me on a 100 series.

Has anyone ever looked into ordering non-nav interior trim to dumb down the typical equipment packages. Seems that would be easier than adding a 5-speed.

But hey what do I know, I drive an 80:p:

Romer
11-06-2013, 11:38 AM
The supercharger was discontinued because some engines were damaged. Some have had no issues.

Tremek
11-06-2013, 11:47 AM
Thanks for the feedback guys. I need to go drive another 100 with the 4 speed and see "just how bad" it is... I just sold a '96 Bronco that I suspect had more pickup but was far cruder and less safe (or easy to live with) re: the kids in the back. If I need speed I can always go drive my E55 that my wife has now usurped after she wrecked her Cayenne. :)

Re: LATCH - that was totally in my mental calculations re: '01+ but I had failed to articulate it. I do like LATCH, particularly since both kids are still rear-facing. Worst-case scenario, could I not trade out the second row of seats in an '00 or older for a '01+ middle bench and get the LATCH anchors, as I think they're built into the seat itself?

As much as I want to get a 5 speed, if I want a truck this month and don't want to finance it I think an '03+ is out of the question unless I come across a miraculous deal. I'm really surprised no one has figured out how to do a 5 speed swap on the older trucks... Must be lack of number of trucks in the market, whereas say the Chevy guys are all over this kind of thing.

Last re: swapping the non-nav headunits into '03+ trucks, there's a guy on mud or one of the other forums I found that was working on a swap kit and then got stalled, no updates in over a year. :( Apparently it's more than just trim, it's harnesses behind the dash and worse yet the HVAC controls being integrated into the nav unit. Boo on Toyota for ever thinking that was a good idea.

The supercharger was discontinued because some engines were damaged. Some have had no issues.

The one thing I have read/seen there (that's totally apocryphal, I'll admit) is that the SCs were discontinued due to damage on the 4.7 Tundra motors, not necessarily the LC/LXs. My understanding is that the LC/LX may have stronger conrods, which is where I understand the Tundras may have seen failures? Totally not sure on this.

Thanks again. :)

RicardoJM
11-06-2013, 12:29 PM
...I need to go drive another 100 with the 4 speed and see "just how bad" it is... I just sold a '96 Bronco that I suspect had more pickup but was far cruder and less safe (or easy to live with) re: the kids in the back....

I have a 99 LX470 with a 4 speed. I don't think it is under powered. I also have a 96 Bronco (with the 302 with a 5 speed) and can confirm it has more pickup than the 100 series. :D

Fishy
11-06-2013, 12:41 PM
Personally lack of a 5-speed would be a deal breaker for me on a 100 series.

Has anyone ever looked into ordering non-nav interior trim to dumb down the typical equipment packages. Seems that would be easier than adding a 5-speed.

But hey what do I know, I drive an 80:p:

The problem is that it's not a direct swap. The NAV also incorporates the HVAC controls and audio system. It's an enormous undertaking.

nakman
11-06-2013, 02:13 PM
Same but different scenario with the transmissions- way more electronics and control modules are involved, far beyond unbolting the 4-speed and slapping in a 5-speed. I have asked, and was pretty convinced it's not worth the trouble. Was hoping it was more like putting an H-55f into a 60 series. :(

Where I wish I had 5 gears is when towing- it's a huge jump from 2nd to 3rd, and going up Vail pass or similar it's like you go from red line to nothing... you rap it out in 2nd then third is an RPM so low you can't maintain speed, so you end up shifting to 2nd again. I've resorted to just manually shifting to 2nd, keep it around 45-50, and forget about 3rd until I've hit the top.

I also wish I had 5 gears when wheeling descents- 2nd gear is just a little too fast for actual controlled downhills when it's just a little technical- think Ouray side of Imogene. So I either ride my brakes a lot in 2nd, or go pathetically slow in 1st. Seems like the 5 speed guys are more in the sweet spot of 2nd gear... just the right amount of speed, don't have to hit the brakes as much, etc.

Tremek
11-06-2013, 02:25 PM
Drove an '01 LX this afternoon and wasn't entirely put off by its pickup on 275/70/16 tires, but I readily acknowledge that 33" + people and gear will make that thing sad.

So... Should I open up my search? Would a '03+ v8 4 runner or GX470 be worth considering? I also realized/remembered today that for whatever dumb reason Toyota put the two LATCH positions in the middle and driver's side seating positions in the middle row instead of both outboard spots - again, weird and inconvenient move.

Thoughts on 4th gen v8 4runner or GX? Either of those are also in the ~$10k range I'm looking to keep near.

Corbet
11-06-2013, 06:36 PM
I would think an early GX should fit into your price range or the 4R. But I'd personally go the GX route even though the aftermarket does not embrace it. We plan to replace our Subaru with one as soon as funds allow a cash purchase.

If you have not seen this take a look: http://forum.ih8mud.com/120-series-toyotas/527826-my-2003-gx470.html There are a couple other good builds on MUD or search on www.toyota120.com for either 4R/GX

Model year changes to GX470: http://www.toyota120.com/html/lexus_gx470.html

Caribou Sandstorm
11-07-2013, 09:25 AM
I priced the GXs earlier this week and test drove one with wife.

I also had a 4th gen 4runner a few years back. The 4runner is wider and more leg room front and back. No thrid row seats on 80% of the 4runners but there are some out there and the body mounts are under the carpet for them even if they are not in there, I think.

The GX was super tiny inside front and back. Wife nixed it, pretty quickly.

The GX pricing for an 04 was 14-18k. There is one that looke really nice for 14,800 white with tan interior on CL. It had Stevenson plates but is not there, Mark is the seller, good guy.

2 are at Stephen's on Colfax/Monaco but prices seemed high for what you were getting.

The V8 4runner's are still spendy and rare. But much better for kids in the back, imo.

Fishy
11-08-2013, 08:41 PM
I also realized/remembered today that for whatever dumb reason Toyota put the two LATCH positions in the middle and driver's side seating positions in the middle row instead of both outboard spots - again, weird and inconvenient move.


The reason why they did that is because those are the two safest spots in the truck. A drivers natural instinct is to turn away from danger. Think head on, the normal reaction would be to jerk the wheel drivers side, leaving the passenger side wide open for impact.

For a two-child ride, I don't see how you beat the 4Runner. Especially the 5th gen. But, you can't fit 3 car seats side-by-side in the 4Runner. At least in our 4th gen we couldn't. The 100 you can.

Tremek
11-08-2013, 09:05 PM
The reason why they did that is because those are the two safest spots in the truck. A drivers natural instinct is to turn away from danger. Think head on, the normal reaction would be to jerk the wheel drivers side, leaving the passenger side wide open for impact.

For a two-child ride, I don't see how you beat the 4Runner. Especially the 5th gen. But, you can't fit 3 car seats side-by-side in the 4Runner. At least in our 4th gen we couldn't. The 100 you can.

I think what we have here is the Japanese building for their market versus ours. In the US the right-rear (passenger) position is the safest for a kid - NHTSA says cars are hit more often on the driver's side in the US, which makes sense as crossing traffic, it's more likely to be coming from your left (sooner) than right. So in the case of the Japanese market having the two LATCH positions on the center and left, away from their traffic, makes more sense (due to driving on left and RHD.) Unfortunately with LATCH in center and left, our kids (on the left) are a little more vulnerable overall.

Why do you say the 4th gen 4runner's best for kids though? The trucks are significantly narrower than the LC, right? I only have 2 total so I don't have the 3 car seat dilemma thankfully. :)

Fishy
11-08-2013, 09:34 PM
Bad info on my part I guess. When my son was born we went to a local seminar on car seat safety. That's the explanation they gave us and we've always used that logic. My kids are out of car seats and on to booster seats now.

As far as what car to buy, I wasn't making a suggestion in either direction. It's your vehicle, drive a few and see what you like best. As you said, you're coming from a twin turbo V8, a supercharged V8 and an E55 in your driveway. Clearly, you know what you like.

If you re-read my post I didn't say a 4th gen was the best for kids. I like 4Runners in general, especially the 5th Gen. Now that my kids are in boosters we'd consider a 5th Gen for my wife. Just my preference. My 100 isn't really a family vehicle anymore, we have a Honda Odyssey for that.

Sometimes I feel like I took a really nice family vehicle and ruined it. It's dented, scratched, over-lifted, locked, terrible on MPG's, loud, slow, underpowered and too big for some trails. However, it's the best vehicle I've ever owned. My wife loves driving it, my kids love riding in it and every time I walk to get in it, it makes me smile.

If I had to buy another one today, I'd go 98-99 LC and not LX and add a front locker and 4.88s before driving it 5 miles. Or, another 2004 and build it almost exactly like the one I have.

Tremek
11-08-2013, 09:44 PM
Really appreciate the input. I also like 4runners - I had a 3rd gen that was a sweet truck. I need to go drive a 4th gen and form an opinion there.

Would I be right to think you guys are pretty relaxed about any Toyota hitting the trails with you? :P