Is it worth saving and what should I be willing to pay??? Help (1 Viewer)

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I have been driving past this cruiser for about 15 years and finally stopped last month to talk to the owner, not to buy it, but to show it some interest. They bought the LX450 22 years ago. They called me today and asked me to make a fair offer...

I am passionate about Land Cruiser’s and feel the life obligation to save them... I have kids and carpel tunnel. I now choose my projects carful as I age..... What is a good deal and still a fair price?

1996 Lexus LX450 206k no lockers

the good:

Owned for ever
No paint work
No rust anywhere
No modifications
AC works!!!

bad:

Looks very very rough!!!!!!
Leaks everywhere
Paint is crap
Seats are crap
Check engine light
Will need everything to baseline
 
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leonard_nemoy

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Considering the price these things are going for these days, the mid range mileage, and the lack of rust I would say it is worth.....




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Seriously though it is probably a $10,000.00 rig. Offer them $5,000.00. I only say $10,000.00 because someone offered me $20,000.00 for my 97 in the hardware store parking lot today.
 
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I just bought another 80 series last month, but this one is so rust free it is tempting me... This is my new 1996 below. I was so excited when I drove this one home I woke up in the middle of the first night and went outside to look at it just to make sure I was not dreaming!

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Irish Reiver

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I bought something similar as project a couple of weeks back. I am more or less on budget so can help you with expected costs. Has the tuck been sitting unused for any length of time?
Baselining will be extensive, brakes, fuel, suspension, maybe even engine.
In my book a truck that needs leather, paint and a moderate amount of baselining with no lockers is worth about $3-4k. With lockers it might be worth $7k.
Baselining isn't cheap unless you are cheap. same with paint etc etc etc....
I do all my own wrenching with the exception of the specialist stuff so my labout is free. If you are going to pay someone to do this then buy a few lottery tickets... :oops:
 

Feldrian

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I bought my trashed, stock '97 LX450 for scrap value ($500) with a rod knock (puke -inducing pictures in my build thread). Deferred maintenance end to end required replacing pretty well everything which was both time consuming and not cheap.

Rough shape but running with a straight, rust-free frame - I'd certainly throw $3-4k at it ... No idea if that's what it's worth, but it's probably what I'd part with. Being a Lexus and no lockers certainly knocks a few bucks off.
 

cartercd

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Although those "in the know" ignore Kelly Blue Book for these trucks, in this case I would offer the owner the low end of the KBB price for fair condition. That would be in the $4K neighborhood. They should consider this a reasonable offer.
 
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I paid $4200 for mine in similar condition in '18. So with addition depreciation $3-4K seems reasonable.
I've been plugging away at mine for 3 years and would take it cross country in a heart beat.
I pay myself a "car payment" every month and when the truck needs something, or more lately when I want an upgrade, I hit that account.
There was a lot more "need" than "want" for the first two years.;) But its been worth it.
 

FMC80

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Looking at the engine bay, there’s evidence to show some shoddy, band aid fixes, years of neglected maintenance and who know what else. I would pass and focus that cash on your current rig. But if you’re bored and need to spend money then you do you. I wouldn’t pay over 3K.
 
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Ask the seller if the head gasket (not just valve cover gasket) has ever been
replaced. If they don't know, find out where it's been serviced and ask that shop.

I would say offer $2000 and go to $3000 max. 1) it's not a land cruiser which is what most people want 2) it needs everything fixed including: interior ($2000 to start), full repaint ($5000-10,000 done properly), and $5000 for mechanical repairs and maintenance. So right there you have between $12-20k. So if you get it for $3000 you will have at least $15,000 into it to make it nice.
 

inkpot

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Yes, it leaks, but not BAD. Pavement under truck is dry. Need to swap or reupholster seats, replace radiator and heater valve, as they are aged out. If your going to wheel it, then the paint does not matter.. Work on leaks starting on the top, the valve cover. then clean it up and see what it needs.
 

flintknapper

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That one has every ear mark of a vehicle where the owner(s) just drove it....and little else.

A vehicle in that condition.....it just screams 'neglect' and an uncaring owner.

The 'basic' vehicle is all there and is certainly rust free for the most part. But sadly not a good candidate for anything other than an off-road vehicle.

4K tops........
 
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Definitely worth saving. It's essentially rust free.

There are electrical wiring issues. Battery cables , fusible links, trailer harness.
I see no oil leaks of any significance.
The cooling system needs lots of attention. Do it all right away.
Front seats are ragged, but could do seat covers for a while to cover it while you do PM.

I would guess you're going to throw $4000 in parts at it plus about $6000 in labor. So, in the $2000 to $4000 range if it runs and drives. I don't think it's one to part out. I think a bit of love and some paint and it could easily be a DD. I bought mine with 196K and in need of LOTS of PM and it's my DD.
 

rdcnj

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Shoot low, you can always come up.

You know that truck needs a head gasket at minimum and possibly an engine.

The interior is trashed.

The paint is trashed.

The frame is good and the body seems straight.

I'd start @ $2200. Anything above $2500 isn't worth it if you're going to want it painted. Even that is pushing it, but it'll be amazing if you follow through. You will spend $4,000-$10,000 getting that truck running and driving reliably, hoping for nothing else to be wrong. A lot of risk. $4k is mostly DIY territory. $10,000 is you paying someone else to be accountable. It also might be light.

So now the real question is... what can you buy for $12,000? A fair amount in better condition.
 

rdcnj

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12K spread out over 2-3years of steady plugging away may be more palatable that 12K all at once....
My only fear in this equation, you may have to front load this particular example with $6-$8. That's the risk you take not being able to drive one before. When opening pandora's box, she doesn't care about our expectations or dreams, lol.
 
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I bought one kinda like that, for 3000. Probably have another 10,000 in it, and very little of that went to cool stuff that can be seen. It’s reliable now, but I’m pretty much just now starting on the cool/ fun stuff. 🔥 💰 🔥 and there is still more baselining to be done. No end in sight, but I enjoy it.
 
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You guys are crazy, I'd offer $2k MAX! So many band aid fixes and neglect, and that's just what you can see.....

Personally I'd focus my time/money/efforts on the nice cruiser you already have.
 

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