Which year to buy ('93-'97)?

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Sup guys, i'm looking to buy a Land Cruiser within the next few week here. Since this is all new to me, I just wanted to get some advice from you guys. Any advice will be appreciated.

1. What is the best year to buy (between '93-'97)?
2. What is standard features and what are optional?
3. What is the difference between a Land Cruiser and a Lexus LX450?
 

e9999

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Welcome!
loads of info here. A quick search (button above) will reveal enough to keep you busy for weeks...!
 
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As mentioned look at the faq. list it right at the top of the list. Also check www.sleeoffroad.com there is a lot to be learned. One thing I would think about doing is purchasing an already built Land Cruiser if you are planning on building one up. I built my 94 up to what I wanted and ended up spending over 21k in the last year--this does not include labor. The 93/94 models have a stouter transmission that was used in a bus in Japan---I chose the 94 becuase I think it is a little more stout for heavy off road use. With that being said my goal for the 94 is to become a trail rig, and when I find a 97 to my liking I will purchase for a daily commuter. Remember these get around 12mpg in the city. Also find one with diff locks if you plan on using your cruiser in offroad situations. Also plan on doing a birf job--expensive in the shop. The 96/97 is said to be more prone to head gasket failure-- All the above mentioned topics has been covered extensively--as you can imgaine a few people got the bright idea before you :idea:

welcome :flipoff2:

*there was a nice 1994 in the for sale section with a super charger that is well built for about 13k--it is a great value
 
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SR.GRINGO said:
The 93/94 models have a stouter transmission that was used in a bus in Japan---I chose the 94 becuase I think it is a little more stout for heavy off road use.
This is highly debatable. While the A442F is a larger tranny, there have been far more reports of problems with this tranny (including flaring problems and solenoid problems) than there have with the A343F used in the 95-97.
 
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How will it be used? DD, play toy, rock crawler?

How much $$$ do you wish to spend.

Slee site will give you a good briefing on the differences between them

I have not heard one person say I absolutly hate my 9X Cruiser.

Usually turns out to be a cash decision or mileage. Another consideration may be the added safety of the 95+ with air bags and side beam.

Rising gas prices will make many low mile family vehicles affordable. Buy the latest model, soccer mom driven, garaged keep rig if you want to spend the $$$$$.

I wanted to spend very little and ended up with a 93 with 165K with crudy (cracked) leather, good body, everyting worked and it had factory lockers. I spent under $5000 but need to do some PM to make it sweet and clean. May need some repairs also but I am willing to do them myself. If you are less handy then buy a low miles rig.
 

cruiserdan

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alaskacruiser said:
This is highly debatable. While the A442F is a larger tranny, there have been far more reports of problems with this tranny (including flaring problems and solenoid problems) than there have with the A343F used in the 95-97.


Define "far more".


There are NO service bulletins related to 442 issues and there are at least 2 that I can think of off-hand that relate to 343's.
 
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Just get the latest one you can afford. You are getting the best and reliable rig anyways...

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I am less mechanically inclined and I so I based decision to purchase a 97 40th Anniversary Edition on getting the newest 80 I could find with not too many miles. I wanted a mall cruiser. I found a 97 from the Original Owner in top notch shape - always garaaged kept. They guy always serviced it at a Toyota shop and had all the service records. While I agree a Locking Diff would be great, since I don't wheel it to the extreme, this was not a deciding factor for me. In any event, I added a TJM Bumper and Winch and this can get me out of most situations (at least the the type I get myself into).

In Summary, buy the Cruiser that most suits your skills and needs.
 
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alaskacruiser said:
This is highly debatable. While the A442F is a larger tranny, there have been far more reports of problems with this tranny (including flaring problems and solenoid problems) than there have with the A343F used in the 95-97.

442 have been around longer. More time to report problems and for things to go wrong.
 
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I am going to say that the best year has to be a "late" 93 no other year has this combination of features:

442 tranny
R134 AC
super-duper starter

Jared
 

landtank

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cruiserdan said:
Define "far more".


There are NO service bulletins related to 442 issues and there are at least 2 that I can think of off-hand that relate to 343's.

The 2 bulletins cover slow engagement in reverse and a noise. Nether is stopping the truck from moving.

Far more is basically a handful of reported solenoid problems and a couple of flaring problems. The big three dream of these amounts as "far more".

But honestly the 4Runner tranny seems to be doing quite well so far.
 
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Boost,

I drive a 94 and my little sister drives a 95. i have gotten to know both pretty well.
Honestly, if i were looking for an 80 i wouldnt think about the year awhole lot. I'd look for mileage and goods maintenance.
My 94 has the 442F tranny, its got 255k miles and not a single thing has been done to it. I absolutely love it, when i drive the 95 i really can tell the difference in the trannies. The 343, to me at least, seems to be not as smooth at high rpm's...maybe this is just an issue with ours.

Regardless of what year, i think everyone will agree here that an clean 80, no matter what year.....will be an awesome choice.
 
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Thanks for the input guys. I will keep these advices in mind when buying.
 

e9999

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airbags is a big difference of course
 
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Cruiserhead05 said:
Boost,
i really can tell the difference in the trannies. The 343, to me at least, seems to be not as smooth at high rpm's...maybe this is just an issue with ours.
Cruiserhead- I think this might be an issue with yours. I've had the opposite experience going from a '93 80 to a '97- the '97 shifts much more smoothly and the vehicle is smoother overall, even at higher speeds. This may be due to the vehicle being newer and in better condition, but just FYI...
 
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The question has been asked many times and there is only one answer - '97. They just got better each year - it's as simple as that. Of course, a smarty-pants answer would be a 98!
 

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