First post, advice needed on a potential purchase (1 Viewer)

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Apr 21, 2021
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After long and exhaustive research, I'm looking to dive in headfirst to the LC/LX community. I've owned wagons primarily the last ten years or so and this will be my first SUV of any kind. I've been watching youtube reviews and testimonials non stop while combing cargurus, cars.com, Craigs, carsandbids, etc. And now it appears I may have found "the one."

It's a 2000 LX470, in Riverrock Green Mica over gray interior, with 52,000 miles on the odometer (yes you read that right). The interior is in fantastic condition, there are some scrapes on the exterior but nothing major. Coming from the northeast, there is some surface rust on the undercarriage but doesn't appear to be anything overly concerning. It's a two owner and includes a second set of wheels/tires, all manuals, two keys, and original window sticker. I'm guessing it's on the original timing belt and water pump. Carfax is clean. Asking price is in the neighborhood of $18K.

Ideally, I wanted a 2006 or 2007 but was drawn to the color combo (didn't want white/beige/silver), the low mileage, and the ownership history. Planning on daily driving it in Wisconsin year round. Any thoughts/advice/insults welcome. Thanks in advance.
 

aging fleet

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My only advice would be to really know the extent of the rust before you drive home, the mechanical stuff is easier to sort out IMO. Riverrock is a great color so, if you like it, go for it before someone else does.

@Northboundndown recently started this thread with some good photos of places where rust can get bad. This may help you when looking yours over, really watch that part of the lower quarter that's hidden by the rear bumper cover.


Good luck
 
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Joined
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Thanks for the replies so far. I do have a deposit down and an agreed price with the seller. Just have to figure out how/when to get to the east coast and get her. Thanks for the encouraging words so far. The only Toyota I've ever owned was in college many years ago, a 1986 Corolla. And I've never purchased a vehicle sight unseen from out of state before so this process has been a bit intimidating.
 

tincan45

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Just be diligent about the rust situation. Y2K might seem like yesterday, but in the Northeast, that is two lifetimes for a vehicle.
 
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Is the limited rust you’ve seen from pictures only. Do you know the common rust areas on the cruisers. The seller of the vehicle I bought on the east coast sent strategically taken pictures. Have you done a video walk around yet? Sellers know the values of these cars if it is truly they clean 18k for under 60k seems too good to be true. Get the vin and run it in the Lexus owners site too. Look for gaps in service and inconsistencies that might smell of rewind.

Hope it really is the one factoring your excitement but don’t let your excitement allow you to get duped.
 
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Pucker, the surface rust is from pictures only but I have also received several video walk arounds from the seller once we connected. I’m confident in the mileage and it’s provenance based on my own investigation, the Carfax, and my interactions with the seller. It’s going to need some maintenance to give me peace of mind (TB and WP, etc) but I’ve budgeted for that. Based on the numerous YouTube videos I’ve watched, I’m familiar with the common areas of rust. And I’m expecting a certain amount of rust based on where it’s coming from. But at that price I’m willing to gamble. Worst case scenario is I show up and the LX isn’t what it was presented to be, I get to have a few drinks on the east coast, fly home, and continue the search. Thanks for the response. I’m so used to the pretentious Mercedes and Porsche forums and this one is so much friendlier.
 
Joined
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If you have a deposit on it, why not have another Mud member go check it out and stick some hands in those common rusty areas to see what happens? I’m sure there’s folks here willing to help, even if it is a gem of a truck. Or at least have it brought to a shop (not a dealer) for a thorough PPI, unless I missed that somewhere and you already did. Dealers aren’t checking for rust, they just assume you know about it because they’re old trucks. They’re checking for mechanicals, and they miss a ton of stuff generally. They missed the completely blown out rear shock bushings on mine, the almost-falling-off rear swaybar bushings, and a couple other small things.

That spot behind the bumper is from the roof drains, I’m an optimist for you, but even the cleanest of trucks have had some issues back there, 20 years is 20 years and there’s a few threads here where folks thought their truck was mint only to pull the bumper and find holes. Without getting someone under there to look, there’s no way of knowing. The exterior on my truck was pretty clean, but I can tell it was washed rigorously, and every wash sends water down into those cavities where it sat with all the crap from the roads. And if the owners aren’t an enthusiast they probably have no idea that it’s a problematic area. I learned the hard way and it’s going to cost me about $2000 if want to fix it. Chances are I’m just cutting it out and leaving it. It’s going to be covered by a new bumper soon anyway.

Just sayin. If I could go back and do it all over, I would have had a second PPI done by a shop that knows the problem areas, and likely walked away and ate my deposit. In your case. If all else is perfect, I don’t know that I’d walk away from the deal if there’s rust problems in that one area, but I’d tell him you’re not paying the agreed upon price. And if you don’t buy it, I’d post it up here with the details so others know what the scoop is.
 
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Mileage sounds great, but all is moot if that truck has significant rust lurking, I would spend a LOT of time under that truck checking all the problem spots, discreetly scraping with a screwdriver to see if it's truly surface rust or you have serious crust or delamination, and checking under the carpet, under the windshield gaskets, etc. Yes, the price of 100s has gone up, and yes, the idea of low miles and a great interior is wonderful, but $18K can turn into a lot more than that quick if you have to deal with serious rust.

If it truly turns out to be surface stuff, then you're getting a good deal even at $18K, and as someone suggested, you might want to clean up all that rust, get the vehicle highly detailed, and then sell it on BAT or C&B for a huge premium. A super low mile truck like that will sell very well.
 
Joined
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Mileage sounds great, but all is moot if that truck has significant rust lurking, I would spend a LOT of time under that truck checking all the problem spots, discreetly scraping with a screwdriver to see if it's truly surface rust or you have serious crust or delamination, and checking under the carpet, under the windshield gaskets, etc. Yes, the price of 100s has gone up, and yes, the idea of low miles and a great interior is wonderful, but $18K can turn into a lot more than that quick if you have to deal with serious rust.

If it truly turns out to be surface stuff, then you're getting a good deal even at $18K, and as someone suggested, you might want to clean up all that rust, get the vehicle highly detailed, and then sell it on BAT or C&B for a huge premium. A super low mile truck like that will sell very well.
I would echo most of this, and don't be impressed by 2 keys, manuals, and window sticker. I still have mine and I bought the truck with 252k miles. They really don't have any correlation to condition of the vehicle, as we learned from my thread.

In regards to flipping it for a profit... yes, you mentioned you wanted and 06 or an 07, but keep in mind that a cherry 06 or 07 with the same mileage might run you $35k right now, or more if we're using BaT as the benchmark. If you have another 6-12 months to wait around for another one, then you may find another needle in the haystack for less, but that hasn't been the trend, as people are realizing more and more what they have and they aren't making any more of these. As I mentioned in another post somewhere, they only sent something like 3,000 100 series to the US in 2006, and even less in 07. I'm sure a percentage of those have been totaled, wrecked, or crushed. They're pretty rare when you compare them to other 4x4s of that same era, and most others were not built like this or anywhere near as capable.

If this thing is as nice as it sounds and it were me in your shoes, I would definitely sell it, bank the $10k I made on it and find another rust-free one for $12-13K (they're out there) that maybe wasn't perfect and had some mileage, and then immediately put that extra cash into parts and build my dream truck. If your plan is overlanding or building your weekend rig, there's really no logical reason to be coming into the 100 market at the highest price points with these mint condition trucks, unless you're made of money or you're trying to be popular on Instagram with the couchlander crowd. If you're looking for the minty mall crawler and have no intention to offroad it, then by all means flip it and go for the best one you can get with your cash, and you can probably drive it for the next 20 years without too many issues.
 
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These are all excellent points. I'm hoping this will serve as my daily driver for many years. Not planning on any hardcore off roading but do have access to land and trails in northern Wisconsin for weekend camping/overlanding. If we have any members in north New Jersey that could put some eyes on it for me, that would be awesome. That's a popular thing to do on Rennlist, the porsche forum, just wasn't sure if that was a "thing" over here. I had a good laugh at the "couchlander" reference. I never heard that before, is that big on Instagram?
 
Joined
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San Antonio
These are all excellent points. I'm hoping this will serve as my daily driver for many years. Not planning on any hardcore off roading but do have access to land and trails in northern Wisconsin for weekend camping/overlanding. If we have any members in north New Jersey that could put some eyes on it for me, that would be awesome. That's a popular thing to do on Rennlist, the porsche forum, just wasn't sure if that was a "thing" over here. I had a good laugh at the "couchlander" reference. I never heard that before, is that big on Instagram?
I just made it up, but basically there's a million pictures of land cruisers all over Instagram with crazy overland builds and look absolutely mint, but they've never seen anything more than pavement. "mall crawler" is something you'll hear a lot here too.
 

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