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Choosing a new vehicle

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posted on May, 22 2008 @ 09:09 PM
Well, I am coming to a point here in a couple months where I will be able to buy a new (to me) vehicle. I realize that with the costs of fuel today, cars, sedans etc. are the most efficient and economical. For my personal needs though, I think a truck or suv would be better.

What I need, is a vehicle that I can move things in when need be, keep some tools, vehicle supplies, some camping gear, and other things I may want to have with me. Also a truck or suv would be ideal for times when I may want to go off the beaten path for some alone time, for camping and what not. Furthermore, there may be times when i'll need to sleep in this vehicle, so again this leans me away from a car.

What i'd like to ask, is in the opinions of the board members here, what would be preferable for the above mentioned: a standard suv, like a nissan pathfinder for example, or a truck such as a toyota tacoma or nissan frontier, with a camper shell attached?

The only things I have to consider are my personal preferences and the things i'd want to use the vehicle for, there are no other factors, as I am a single man in my early 30s with no children. I can't spend alot, maybe $6k, but I do believe I can get something decent for that amount. Whether it be truck or suv, I do prefer a mid-sized vehicle, I never was one to like the huge landyacht type trucks/suvs.

All opinions & thoughts appreciated.... and while this may not seem a survival related topic, trust me, it is.


posted on May, 24 2008 @ 08:11 PM
a hundred views, and not one response even - this is a right turn off! surely there is one amongst you who might have an opinion?

posted on May, 24 2008 @ 09:05 PM
6000 to spend????
an suv???
ok, i sell cars for a living, have been a for while (over 5 years), and im successful at it, i work at a multi-line store, and sell new and used.
when you look at a truck for 6000 dollars consider a few things

1. if it is 4wd and only 6000 retail used, is the 4wd about to die? hows the suspension? was this thing used hard? body damage? wear and tear?
2. 2wd, was it used for jobs? was it a company truck? a work truck for a construction guy? a tradesman? he has the lexus in the garage and beats the sh-- out of this thing?

your best bet in my mind is to find a 2wd 4cyl. (some come front wheel drive) small ute. those seem to have the best lifespan, im not biased so let's name a few : kia sportage, chevy tracker, honda crv, toyota rav 4, chevy blazer, ford escape, etc.
but remember , these trucks are in high demand now cause of fuel prices so if you wanna find one in that price range count on 80, 90, 100+ thousand miles, if it has 40 to 50 for that price id be nervous, depending on the year, have a mechanic check it out, but don't plan on discounts , we'd rather sell it to someone else...just know the truth: if you're buying a 6000 dollar suv or truck, plan on driving a 6000 dollar suv or truck, they don't morph into escalades and there is no free warranty!!! god never invented one

posted on May, 24 2008 @ 10:47 PM
whats your price range?

posted on May, 24 2008 @ 10:57 PM
Well, if I had six grand for a car, I would buy a Toyota. My Geo Prism is a toyota, it is exactly the same as a corrolla, and Toyotas last forever. Mine has 125+k miles, and the only things that go wrong are normal wear and tear. I also think a toyota truck would get good gas mileage, if you get the smallest one. I would try to get one with jump seats and a hitch for pulling a small or medium size wagon(I forgot what you call them, but you haul them behind your truck to carry lawnmowers and stuff on). Get a clutch too, I hate automatics, you have more control over a stick shift, imo.

Another advantage to the truck is, GOD FORBID, but you could live out of the back with a cheap camper top.

posted on May, 25 2008 @ 02:51 AM
It depends on what you see coming.

I own a Honda Passport, 1994 with a 4 cylinder engile ( 2.6 )

It gets about 20 MPG with me Lead footing it around town, with a lot of short trips in the city.

It has a fold down backseat, hatchback, tailgate and swing out spare tire carrier.

I know you can get one for 6 grand.

BUT... IF you handed me 6 grand, and tell me to "go buy you a survival vehicle", I would look into an OLD Jeep, Pre 1974. Yes you heard me right Pre 1974, with a 4 cylinder engine.

They are EASY to work on, they dont have ANY ELECTRONICS in the ignition system, you cam "Pimp them out" to the max, you will always get your money BACk out of it when your ready to sell it.

Of course they are 4 wheel drive ( selectable on the HUBS ), Get Good Mileage, are as strong as a TANK, and Climb like a billy goat if necessary.

For 6 Grand you can get a Nice Old Jeep that someone has already fixed up and 'tricked out' a little bit. They all will have something "WRONG" with them, but JC whitney sells all the Jeep Stuff you ever wanted, so does the Local Auto Zone, O Rileys, NAPA or Pep Boys.

You can haul some stuff in it, and you can throw a Futon Mattress in the back hatch/tailgate area to sleep if necessary.

Pleanty of accessories available like cool bumper jacks, gas can holders, water carrier holders, Lights for the roll bar, small lift kits to get 2 inches more ground clearance, upward turning exhaust for crossing creeks, bumper guards, winches, heavy Duty Back bumpers, Heavy Strong Steel Wheels with 'slightly' oversized tires. ( BF googrich All Terrain Probably )

Keep in mind that you will be driving it in the city mostly, but if TSHTF, you have a military quality vehicle immune to EMP and most traffic jams.

Very EASY to fix, common parts anywhere.

You did ask in a Survival forum...

Thats just 2 cents worth...


posted on May, 25 2008 @ 03:18 AM
Here's my suggestion.

1990 F150 4x4, 300ci and a 5 speed.

It doesnt get me any where fast, but it will get me anywhere.

As long as you keep oil in them, the 300 6cyl will never die. Ever. The truck will rust to pieces and you will have a rusty frame with a running engine.

I've got over 300,000 miles on mine.

There is no other vehicle I'd reccommend.

posted on May, 25 2008 @ 03:26 AM
Ok I'll bite. If you look at any ranger special in the outback or tundra you will see 6 huge letters on the tailgate. TOYOTA. Virtually indestructibe vehicles. Best for low or no non existent roadways. Not the landrovers, just your ford ranger little cousin equivalent.
Coshy, my workmate had a f150 with '360,000 miles'. Still ran like a bear even after the body, frame, and finally the ujoints rotted out.

[edit on 5/25/2008 by jpm1602]

[edit on 5/25/2008 by jpm1602]

posted on May, 25 2008 @ 03:56 AM
1. 2008 Toyota Corolla, diesel, manual. 30% more economical than the Prius. Fast. Quite spacious. I'm 6'4" and can easily fit in it.

2. Toyota Hi-Lux. I hope their called Hi-Lux in the USA (I'm in New Zealand). Unbreakable. Just look up Top Gear - Hi Lux on the Yube, there'll be a number of spots on it. The farmers in this part of the world swear by them. And they swear a lot.

3. A manual Jeep Wrangler. I know absolutely b*gger all about cars, but I can fix this. As an earlier poster mentioned, the mechanics are easy. And like a Hi-Lux, solid-as.

posted on May, 25 2008 @ 04:03 AM
Mr Gunter. My brother swears by his 2007 diesel Volkswagon. He gets 36 on the highway and 32 city. He too is 6'4''. Truly my big brother.

posted on May, 25 2008 @ 05:15 AM
Too true regarding the diesel VW. In fact, the same can be said for many of the European models coming out now, and for the past few years.

It's amazing how diesels have finally come of age. In NZ, diesel is far cheaper than petrol (a road user charge is calculated later on).

We used to get a bad version of diesel, but with government regulations it's cleaned up considerably. Most importantly, so have the sulphur emissions. I had my local Jeep dealership harass me to buy the new Jeep Diesels a couple of weeks back. He made the comment that the sulphur levels in diesel entering NZ are now 5000% less than what they ere before.

Naturally, I was skeptical, so I did some checking. He was right.

posted on May, 25 2008 @ 04:23 PM
I appreciate everyone who has posted, I am enjoying reading the responses, and some interesting informations have been related here.

If there's anyone here who might know, I would like thoughts on the toyota t100 truck, which seems to be a bit obscure.


posted on May, 27 2008 @ 02:24 AM
reply to post by Ice_Man

If you Want/Need a "survival" vehicle, you need one that will "Survive" EMP.

Otherwise, ANY other vehicle is a 'daily driver' and survival vehicle and will do whatever you need it to do. Even a "Le Car".

If it gets Bad... dont discount the Possibility of EMP.

EMP will 'kill' everything past 1974. Even Hummers, ( Except MIL. hardened versions ), within a Certain Radius depending on Altitude and Yeild.

Anything Pre 1974, with POINTS instead of electronics in the ignition are IMMUNE. Some and/or MOST diesels trucks Pre 1989 are also immune.

Some Diesels may have Electronic Voltage regulators after 1988, but they will still start and run, just wont charge the battery till you pop in a spare.

To ask about a "Survival" vehicle and NOT take this into concideration is shortsighted I believe. Its really gonna Suck to have a nice Toyota truck fully loaded , that wont start.

Best Regards,


posted on May, 30 2008 @ 01:09 AM
Here are a few things I would ask myself, or you, considering the budget..

1) Is this going to be your daily driver or do you have other transportation?
The reason I ask this, well... think of it like this:
You could go out and buy reliable rig, and eat up most of your cash.. and more than likely it will get you where you want to go, day in and day out.
(that is if you find a good one)
Or, if this is a secondary vehicle, you can skimp a bit on the initial cost.. if you are willing to do some repairs yourself. So.. on that note,

2) How mechanically inclined are you?
If you are handy with tools and not afraid to make your own repairs, this in itself gives you alot of options on what you can find that would work for you. As some of the previous posters said, 6k might not go along way into getting something..

But heck, I digress, I'm the last guy you want to ask about market values and such. Everything I drive, first off... I own 'em all, and while most of them are topping the 30 and 40 year mark... and considered "junkers" by the masses on the roadways, I can pretty much fix just about anything on them with a few common wrenches and a socket or two. It's quite nice to open the hood and see an engine, not a mess of wires and computers...

If you are following me here.. think of this:
Say you run out and pick up some vehicle, (after thorough inspection by you hopefully) and it ends up costing you 5000 USD.. you think you got a good deal, (still got 1k in the bank) you drive home on a bill of sale or temp tag or whatnot, then you gotta register the sucker, get some plates to be legal... 75 bucks later... well.. but what is insurance gonna run for this thing... ? Once you get it all running.. eventually ya gotta change the oil.. maybe it needs new tires, brakes might be nice... someday... really, the list could go on. At the end of it all, once you've got your tools and stuff loaded up... that 1k is long gone. Say you buy a "beater" for 2500 USD, and after the same routine and alot of blood, sweat and skinned knuckles you finally have something. Maybe even have a little cash left over to go for a drive and camp out.

Now back to the point,
You Do want to have something that is reliable in the end result, and as far as that goes.. it would depend on the year and make really.
The older rigs (70's) are a dime a dozen right now, since most of them are pretty bad as far as mileage goes, and parts are more plentiful in the aftermarket which might be something worth noting. A larger supply in hard parts will mean that the most common items are not going to cost you an arm and a leg, but more importantly they will be readily stocked items at most auto parts houses. Might be nice if you are driving that classic somewhere down the beaten path outside some small town, not so much so if the ECM (computer) in the newer pathfinder shat the bed and the next replacement is 2 days out and to the tune of $575. Not to mention the added expenses...
I for one, would take a wrench in my hand over that situation any day.

How do I know this you may ask... well... let's just say I manage a big box auto parts store in a small town, and I'm accustomed to it.

I seem to keep losing my point here, sorry... must have been the after work beers...

Anyway, back to the matter at hand:
3) Reliability:
Initially, the newer the better and shinier so to speak, and it takes a long time to polish an old turd into a gemstone.. but if you got the time, here are some you might want to research:

Pretty much all of the older and newer models, any style... Toyota has always been rated high in reliability, it's not uncommon to see them rolling around with more than 250K miles on them with original powertrain. One thing to note though, even if they don't break much, when they do.. well.. it will cost ya, and the stuff is not too common, apparently we have to wait for them to build the parts and pay for labor in the process.
I would give them a #1 rating... regardless of that knock. They have been around for awhile, and have been building solid rigs since the mid '60's... the newer they are the more money they will want though.

The Landcruiser was pretty much the top of the line 4x4 from 86 and prior, worthy of note on many levels. Followed by The SR5 truck and then the Tacoma/Tundra's of this era, the SUV like 4Runner is pretty much the same, just a different body style.
I hate to sound like a Toyota rep here, and I'm not... I used to think they were junk honestly, but live and learn 'eh.
On to the short list....

They bought out Datsun IIRC, but another good choice. Those old Datsun trucks... ahhh... memories.

Domestics and Others
GM: That 350 CID powerplant has been around literally forever... can you say cheap parts!

Some good, some bad... but mostly good.
That 300 six is a good one BTW, just watch out for those half-breed Mazda 5 Spd tranny's.

They are basically Dodge, Mitsubishi.. etc. Bad mojo there... I cringe when I sell parts for those. Jeep wrangler = Heap Dangler... if you want to go offroad, get something else like a Subaru Brat, but if you want to look cool running around topless... well... whatever makes you feel good.

I'm sure I missed some in there, but the last one worthy of honorable mention is:
Volkswagen Bus... errm Van... Man!

The older ones are air-cooled, so you don't have to have your buddies urinate in your radiator to get you home after you have sprung a leak, (don't ask) and the camper vans are a hippies best friend, they come with a 12v fridge so you can save the beer for yourself..
but the downside is they have the aerodynamics of a brick. Not too bad though, considering the creature comforts... my old 78 Westy has a pop top tent, and can sleep 4 adults and one child if they are properly bathed of course. Plenty of room for gear, tools and misc stuff... and thoroughly multicolored rusty camo'd for urban jaunts just as long as you have your fishing hat on. I've messed around with mine and got it up to about 19.74 MPG all day long, fully loaded and in all conditions.. city or highway, not bad for me, and rightfully fitting for one with the demeanor of "The Dude" like myself.

Ahh well, There I go, rambling again... 152 characters left...
I hope this helps, or at least be as amusing to read as it was to write.. and on that note,

I must abide,

posted on May, 30 2008 @ 04:10 PM
Ever considered the fact that if situation X does happen, you will be a large, red target with a bullseye and flashing lights to all screaming "HERE I AM!" Your vehicle will not be yours for too long, I'm afraid. And yes they probably will take it over your dead body. If an EMP were to go off, there will probably be total chaos and anarchy for some time. I would suggest not using it at all during those times as it will draw unwanted attention to yourself. Get a horse or a bicycle.

posted on Jan, 6 2009 @ 06:13 PM
You can't go wrong with an older full size Chevy truck with the 350. They are ok for fuel economy but you can plan on them running for a long time. When they do break - parts are EVERYWHERE. A four wheel drive with slightly oversized (31" or so) tires will give you moderate off road ability with on road drivability. The bed is large enough to sleep in if necessary. You can also hook up a trailer to carry whatever you may need. Not to mention - it won't stand out in a crisis time like other flashy vehicles will.

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