All factors considered, which 4wd will get me more places?

GussyD

New Member
Hi all, first post here. I’m just getting into 4wding and keen to get out and see as much of Australia as I can. I am yet to buy a fourbie and after weeks of researching I’m struggling to decide what to dump my cash on.
I have 3 vehicles that I’m currently looking at.
TD42 GU patrol Ute Or 1hdfte land cruiser
or
Pre DPF Ranger or Hilux
Or
2011 Holden RC Colorado 4jj1 engine (my uncle is selling one immaculate condition very low kms and completely stock)
Of course the patrol or land cruiser would be the most capable and probably most reliable especially when modified. Is an old school 4wd the best way to go? Or will a fairly modern IFS vehicle still allow me to reliably travel Australia’s most remote outback destinations?
 
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Hoyks

Well-Known Member
A reliable vehicle being driven by someone that knows how to drive and has mechanical empathy will go furthest. Most outback and remote roads aren't hard, they are just a long way from anywhere. The side tracks of Wattagans is harder that 99% of Cape York.

An old dunger will cost you money.
Old diesels will cost a lot of money if they go wrong, diesels in general are expensive to fix.
A modified vehicle will cost you money.
35's and a Just send it mate attitude will definitely cost you money.
 

GussyD

New Member
A reliable vehicle being driven by someone that knows how to drive and has mechanical empathy will go furthest. Most outback and remote roads aren't hard, they are just a long way from anywhere. The side tracks of Wattagans is harder that 99% of Cape York.

An old dunger will cost you money.
Old diesels will cost a lot of money if they go wrong, diesels in general are expensive to fix.
A modified vehicle will cost you money.
35's and a Just send it mate attitude will definitely cost you money.
I’m not particularly interested in doing any hardcore tracks just for the sake of it, I just want to see as much of Australia as I can. I want a 4wd that can reliably take me anywhere from Fraser Island to the kimberleys, Arnhem Land, cape York, Pilbara, Simpson desert, etc.... I want to be able to live out of my 4wd for weeks at a time and I want it to be reliable. Is it worth dropping money into a kitted out tough as nails GU patrol/old school land cruiser? or would my money be better spent with a modern IFS like the ranger/Hilux or even the cheap RC Colorado and still be able to travel to those kinds of remote places?
I’m leaning more towards the old school purely for reliability and being easier to work on
 

typhoeus

Well-Known Member
if you want to go remote, buy something fairly new and insurable. it will be reliable, get you most places, be cheaper to fix/ recover/ replace if written off, down side is, its expensive purchase price and you can't modify it much and be legal. if you get something older, you can modify it, but you should consider it a toy, something you can take risks with and be prepared if the worst happens, because it will be expensive/ hard to insure, be costly to fix out in the sticks, lack comfort and safety features of modern counterparts. but you can risk damage if you can fix it yourself.
So far, purchase and maintaining my 20 year old hilux has been cheaper than the prospect of buying a new 4x4, its been fun even if its not the absolute most capable rig, but i know it inside out, and would trust it to go most places, and know when to give it a miss if the track is top rough.
 

synchro

Active Member
I’m not particularly interested in doing any hardcore tracks just for the sake of it, I just want to see as much of Australia as I can. I want a 4wd that can reliably take me anywhere from Fraser Island to the kimberleys, Arnhem Land, cape York, Pilbara, Simpson desert, etc....
In that case any proper 4wd that takes your fancy - as mentioned newer and maintained the better.
 

Kippie

Well-Known Member
The main limitation is your own skills and confidence before the vehicle limits your adventures. If you lookup old YouTube clips you'll find that before 4wd were a big thing people traveled all over Australia in station wagons. Today some people travel in Subarus across the Kimberleys and Simpson desert. So it can be done in a fairly simple vehicle. The crux is that you have to learn the limitations of yourself and your vehicle. A fully kitted out vehicle may give you the beginner's over confidence which may get you in trouble. Have a look at Inskip Point videos and wonder why fully decked out vehicles get bogged, but a simple ute scoots past.
Also, with a fully kitted out vehicle you'll be carrying a lot of equipment that may not be necessary for where you are going. For example, no point carrying a winch if you go across the Oodnadatta track or Simpson desert. But you will need it if you go into the high country in winter.
For my money I would get the newest stock vehicle I could afford and then put on a good set of tyres and a basic recovery kit. Here is a link to a relevant video.

 

Albynsw

Well-Known Member
If you are wanting to do remote style touring reliability is going to get you further than a 4 inch lift and 35’s on an old worn vehicle
I don’t know much about the Colorado but if it is in good nick and price may be a good option ?
Toyota’s are by far the most common vehicle in outback and rural Australia so in general the mechanics are familiar with them and parts are easier to obtain. I wouldn’t say they are better than the other brands but if things go bad you have a far better chance of reasonable outcome than with the other makes.
A Hilux ( or equivalent in another brand ) with a few modifications is a good all round vehicle that will handle the off-road and be ok on the big K blacktop runs, has plenty of storage capacity, you can sleep in the tray and are reasonable on fuel
The newer the vehicle the better
 

Les PK Ranger

4x4 Earth Contributer
If you want to kit it up a bit, live out of it for say a week without top up supply, make sure you get a good payload capability.
My old PK Ranger had a GVM of 3280kg, most trips to the Simpson etc I'd leave with full fuel, water, gear, food payload at 2850kg or so.
If I tried that in my older NF Pajero, it had like 700kg from kerb weight available until I hit GVM, so would have struggled to carry half the Ranger load.
Many start such trips over GVM, and soon come down under, but tracks make GVMs a bit of a high figure too with stresses of such trips.

Out of your list, for sure the Patrol or Cruiser will get you to more difficult places, but 99% of touring can be done in anything 4WD with suitable thought into setup, needs, go with bare essentials.
IFS is fine and most have ample clearance with a small 2" lift.
You will find a lot on the market 2nd hand will have already done this and other mods, a great way to get into it without spending as big.

A lot comes down to 1 or 2 people, or a family ?
Me, if single or couple and going for a general ute, would go for a suicide door super / extra cab. Ranger or Dmax.
Very flexible and rear cab area is a great place to setup a fridge and extra storage.
 

littleGem

Well-Known Member
Everything up there will take you to 98% of this country, with a minor lift and good tyres, as someone who owns a heavily modified GU ute and stockish Dmax, my mindset has changed, if I had my time again I wouldn't of bought the GU first and gone straight to the Dmax and just built that up (would've been a lot, LOT! Cheaper) the 4JJ motor is arguably one of, if not the most reliable Diesel motor released in recent history and I wouldn't rule that out of your list.

Personally you'd better going for the more reliable vehicle rather than the most capable. You can make anything capable, can't make everything reliable.
Just my 2c
 

cam04

Well-Known Member
I have a soft spot for the RC Colorado out of that lot. I had one for 6 years and to date is the most reliable thing I have ever had. Mine did the cape and the Simpson amongst other places without issue. Plus you know it is immaculate and you know it’s history. Some of the bigger utes also use a fair bit more fuel which is always a consideration these days.
 

GussyD

New Member
Thanks for all the feedback, great info here. I think I will buy the Colorado, based on what you guys have said, it will get me everywhere I want to go, and it will be the most cost effective and reliable. Cheers
 

Decca

Member
Your uncle's low Klm Colorado with, presumably a known history would be my pick.
And possibly cheaper to insure as it's unmodified,

I thought the Colorados had the VM Motori motors ??? in which case I'd probably have a rethink as the Isuzu donks have a very good reputation
 

Batts88

Well-Known Member
It's not always about the vehicles capabilities the drivers experience, common sense is a major part so you have a lot of learning to do. 3 vehicles you mentioned 5 but any way pick one to suit your day to day usage would be the best one for your 1st 4wd. The ford, hilux, holden would be easier to drive in the city climate if you live there they're lighter, better on fuel. The other 2 built to last a long time but may require more reguar servises oil changes for eg so a bit dearer to own.
 

cam04

Well-Known Member
Your uncle's low Klm Colorado with, presumably a known history would be my pick.
And possibly cheaper to insure as it's unmodified,

I thought the Colorados had the VM Motori motors ??? in which case I'd probably have a rethink as the Isuzu donks have a very good reputation
RC’s are the early Dmax with the 3.0 4jj1 engine.
RG colorados have the 2.8 motori engines
 

megamung

Active Member
This set up took us most places for more than 5 years and thousands of outback K's, the vehicle stayed stock the whole time and never let us down. only upgraded when we were looking at having a go at the more extreme challenges along the way. example Nolans brook, big red, etc.
IMG_5835.jpg
 

Lost1?

Active Member
Good call on the Colorado. Good suspension and tyres. A canopy to store your gear and long range tank will get you everywhere. If travelling solo often then maybe a winch and front bar as insurance. Hunt around, you will probably find a canopy and draws second hand. Maybe a long range tank too. Good luck.
 

Baggs71

Active Member
A reliable vehicle being driven by someone that knows how to drive and has mechanical empathy will go furthest. Most outback and remote roads aren't hard, they are just a long way from anywhere. The side tracks of Wattagans is harder that 99% of Cape York.

An old dunger will cost you money.
Old diesels will cost a lot of money if they go wrong, diesels in general are expensive to fix.
A modified vehicle will cost you money.
35's and a Just send it mate attitude will definitely cost you money.

brilliant response
vote for the best 1st reply to any thread
 
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