2021 Dual Cab utes

Submitted: Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 12:46
ThreadID: 141333 Views:8288 Replies:14 FollowUps:19
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Hey everyone. I am looking into buying a new dual cab. Looking and comparing all the new 2021 range from all brands. The more I look and research into them, they all seem to have or have had some sort of issue.

Hilux - DPF they say they have fixed it. Read something about dust bypassing the the filters causing issues. Good resale value.

Triton - good reports on motor and trans, but that over hang at the back.

BT50 / Dmax - read about some water ingress issues with puddles on floor. Good but aging 3.0l motor

Ranger - 3.2 good but do they still have some transmission issues.

Navara - not going there

I know there is always going to be a lot of negatives from people when researching. But does one seem to stand out as being more reliable. They all seem to have some issue.
Ute would be a daily driver, when camping will be towing a camper trailer.

Any thoughts or advise on the new utes would be great.
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Reply By: Member - John - Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 12:51

Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 12:51
G'day, can not help you as I don't have any first hand experience with any of them, but with the Hilux, I thought the air filter problem was with the Landcruiser's not Hilux.
John and Jan

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Reply By: Member - Bigfish - Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 12:59

Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 12:59
I dont own one and never will. From what I,ve read and been told is that the Triton is excellent value for the money. Every vehicle has some sort of a flaw. I also wouldn't touch a Ranger or BT50 because of their transmission issues...along with some motor issues as well. As for a daily driver I own 4wd used for touring/camping. Bought a hyundai i30 as a rum around/daily driver. Twin cabs are a pain in the butt around suburbs and parking bays. Good luck....just check out all the vehicle forums to get a good over view.
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Follow Up By: joshg - Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 13:02

Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 13:02
BT50 and Isuzu now together, Bt50 would have a different ttansmission
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Follow Up By: Gbc.. - Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 13:39

Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 13:39
Bt50, dmax, triton, hilux, Prado - all the same aisin 6 speed box.

Water in the bt50 is from roof racks being installed incorrectly. The ‘ageing’ 3l is actually mostly all new.

If you want current tech, the ranger is an XLT plus tech pack to keep up with base model new utes. It is basically a runout model now.

The new hilux drives nicely but the lane assist is braked because it doesn’t have electric steering. Hilux back seats are woefully small.

I chose the new BT50. Big on back seat ammenity, base model has all the tech - available in cab chassis which I wanted. It is actually quicker than the 3.2 ranger and the new hilux which defies the final output figures, and it drives like a car and uses little fuel - the hilux is good on fuel now too.

I had a 3.2 ranger. I don’t miss it. It was a good car, just old now in comparison.
FollowupID: 913536

Follow Up By: axle - Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 14:02

Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 14:02

FollowupID: 913537

Follow Up By: RMD - Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 14:37

Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 14:37
Are you learning Mandarin too? Have a chat with Kevin.

Re the Utes.
A Triton has a chassis which looks similar to my swiss cheese, plenty of holes in some areas. Loaded heavy they break. Shocks are not much, just watch the tails wag up and down on normal streets. Cheap to buy though.

Ford reliability and after sales support lacks somewhat.

As Gbc said, Bt50 and Dmax basically a new engine. Same trans, Lane departure system and auto braking may not be what you like though. It scares many. Can be switched off.
Josh is smart not looking at Navara.
FollowupID: 913538

Follow Up By: AlbyNSW - Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 14:42

Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 14:42
Triton and Navara seem to suffer the most with resale value so will be the most expensive option over cost of ownership out of them all.
FollowupID: 913539

Follow Up By: axle - Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 15:07

Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 15:07
RMD, ..... Just trying to keep some humour in the works.

You know where this thread is going to end up..lol.

Actually the LD V is not to bad, had a bit to do with them working out of a Turf Farm, just you feel like your in a big drum when driving.

FollowupID: 913540

Follow Up By: Member - silkwood - Monday, Apr 05, 2021 at 10:22

Monday, Apr 05, 2021 at 10:22
Ranger transmission issues have not been a serious issue (any more than other ute issues) for about four years, the exception being the recall for the transmission oil pump. This is no longer an issue (according to Ford). Three years ago I chose the Ranger because it stacked up better for the features which mattered to me. Doesn't mean it was the best (even for me) in all areas. My vehicle, with rear locker, manages the rougher tracks (it's never going to be a modified Patrol/Cruiser/Gladiator hard-core drive) if that's an issue. Without the locker, traction control is very average. I have had nothing wrong with the ute, very happy, but Ford's reputation for aftersales, should something go wrong, is abysmal.

Toyota has better traction control and better features at each level (though you pay for them). DPF issues appear to have been rectified (though after huge pressure on the manufacturer). Overall, one of the best choices, apart from price- which you'll pick up with resale.

I dismissed the Triton, despite the value for money, because of the overhang (I carry a canopy). The new model looks to be a great vehicle, still the best value. If the overhang does not concern you, it would be a strong contender for best purchase.

The Isuzu was an ergonomic wreck, 5 years behind the opposition. The main thing going for it was the engine reliability. I hated it upon test driving (from dealer and with friend's vehicle off-road). Quite a number of those modifying suspension had chassis issues, though I believe that was mostly from anyone lifting over 40mm. The new model appears to be a huge improvement and, if choosing now, that would be one of my leading contenders. Don't listen to the guff about it being built more like a truck than the others.

Obviously if looking at the Isuzu you would also consider the Mazda.

I was also restricted as I wanted an extra cab, so not all models fitted the bill. Keep in mind, my research was three years ago. Your mileage may differ...

Cheers, Mark
FollowupID: 913626

Reply By: Kazza055 - Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 18:46

Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 18:46
When I was doing my research back in 2013, I set up a spreadsheet and on the list I had only those dual cabs that were rated to tow 3500kg even though out van is only 2500kg, the 3500kg was my measuring stick.

I found a site, www.carpoint.com.au that allowed me to compare up to 4 cars and gave me a result that I copied and pasted into excel. Once I did some cleaning up of the data I ended up with the 4 cars displaying the various points where I could glance across the columns and clearly see the comparative results.

Unfortunately this site now takes you to www.carsales.com.au and does not seem to allow you to do a comparison.

For those interested I compared Ford Range, Holden Colorado, Isuzu D-Max and Mazda BT50. I ended up buying the D-Max and have not regretted my choice.
AnswerID: 635852

Follow Up By: Gronk - Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 21:59

Friday, Apr 02, 2021 at 21:59
I'm not a ute person, but I like the new MUX when it comes out. Reason I'd buy an Izuzu ...the motor. Even though the motor has been updated , it is still the same specs and I can't see them doing anything to affect it's reliability.
FollowupID: 913554

Reply By: Mal58 - Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 08:22

Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 08:22
There was a comparison of the different utes by 4wd 24-7 on you tube.

The link is

4wd 24-7 Ute comparison
AnswerID: 635859

Reply By: Member - Soft-Trailer - Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 11:04

Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 11:04
Why steer clear of the Navara, just out of interest?

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Follow Up By: RMD - Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 15:27

Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 15:27
Many Navara's, D22 had poor paint finish and purchased with rust in the body when new. The tubs were made with around 20mm less height on the LHS than the RHS. The cam chains used to crap themselves before the OE tyres wore out. They overfuel on takeoff, simply observe one to see. Similar issues with the D40 model MANY of which were imported by Nissan with malformed chassis on RH rear corner. They had some auto problems too. Again blowing smoke under load or acceleration. A dealer in central NSW had 6 pulled apart at the one time because of warped cylinder blocks, not heads, Nissan refused warranty on them. dealer left holding the bag. If you can accept that, then the after sales service and provision of warranty will floor you with the company denying cam chain horrendous noise and never admitting the numbers of malformed D40 Chassis which were salted around Australia so none concentrated in one area. Knowing this, I measured two NEW red ones at my local dealer a while back and found Both, sitting side by side on the lot had 20mm+ drop on RHS rear wheel arch. Same as a problem I saw earlier. I still have pics of the Vin's. Maybe all the problems have disappeared with the new model they sell. Yeah, that is it!
FollowupID: 913579

Follow Up By: Les - PK Ranger - Sunday, Apr 11, 2021 at 08:03

Sunday, Apr 11, 2021 at 08:03
I think just about every Navara I've ever driven behind has belched black smoke out of the exhaust to some degree, even seemingly newer looking vehicles / models.
Not sure if this was purely over fueling, but something amiss with the way they are tuned, or develop some sort of emissions problem (EGR, injectors / pump ?) over time.
Puts me right off them.
FollowupID: 913757

Reply By: Idler Chris - Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 14:14

Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 14:14
I have had my D-Max in one metre water with no water ingress. As long as you keep moving I doubt there would be any issues. As for the ageing motor, it does have subtly improvements with each new model and they don't change the whole motor because it so good and reliable. I have had several D-Max's and the motor was the deciding factor and as long as they don't change it, it is likely to be the deciding factor in the future. Chris
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Follow Up By: axle - Sunday, Apr 04, 2021 at 09:17

Sunday, Apr 04, 2021 at 09:17
Hi Chris

Ive been a Isuzu fan for years especially with the commercial engines, but it is a worry when they change internal components as they have done with the latest 3.0 l


One just hopes their previous reliability standard does not falter

FollowupID: 913607

Reply By: Keir & Marg - Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 15:50

Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 15:50
I see Amarok is not on your list. I have three friends with Amaroks and they are all very happy with them.
AnswerID: 635870

Follow Up By: Idler Chris - Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 22:10

Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 22:10
Amaroks can only be serviced in the major centres. Have any issues and you can be up for a very expensive tow. Chris
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Follow Up By: RMD - Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 22:56

Saturday, Apr 03, 2021 at 22:56
Kier & Margaret
Happiness isn't a factor is it? reliability and ease of accessing serviceability if problems arise is perhaps a tad important, "cos if nothing ever goes wrong everyone is happy with any brand. I thought of buying a new 2L dual cab Amarok a while back, but during a test drive and returning to yard, when changing down outside the dealers AND crossing safely time wise in front of oncoming traffic it suddenly stalled. Knowing the KEY HAS to be OFF then ON to restart, which I did extremely fast, saved me from being there in front of two lane traffic which I had allowed for. The auto V6 is different and would want to be. Later after towing vans, 3 of 2L variety burned after stopping roadside. I went right off Amaroks.
FollowupID: 913601

Follow Up By: rapid80 - Saturday, Apr 10, 2021 at 12:22

Saturday, Apr 10, 2021 at 12:22
I've just completed a trip down South WA in my V6 Amarok. Its now done 24k km and so far the only issue has been a leaking rear diff pinion seal which was repaired under warranty.
Very nice to tow our 2 tonne camper with and it did well in the sand dunes and beach run. The extra power and 8 speed auto are very well suited to touring and offroad the hill descent did a great job. No low range but the short 1st gear and electronics make up for it.
I service it myself so not concerned with dealership coverage.
No ute is perfect so you just have to weigh up the positives and negatives for each.
I like the Amarok's wider stance and the extra stability, tray width and seating room it offers. Also the engine/gearbox combo is excellent as are the chassis size and larger brakes.
Friends of ours had their Ranger blow an engine on their way back from Coral Bay. It had done less than 100k km. Also where I worked they had shifted away from Rangers after numerous engine and gearbox issues.
FollowupID: 913755

Reply By: swampy - Monday, Apr 05, 2021 at 14:49

Monday, Apr 05, 2021 at 14:49
Triton GLS+ 4x4
oct 2020 upgrade model
all electronic upgrades including free GPS and Alloy wheels
over hang for heavy towing unsuitable
2.4 DID uses around 9---11 ltrs per 100km from research

Hilux SR 4x4
sept 2020 =latest upgrade suspension ,dash ,facelift
DPF = mechanical upgrade May 2020
GPS and alloy wheel 2000$ xtra
******** economy manual 2.8 actual city drive 9 ltr per 100km ..measured fill to fill
bigger brakes than Triton
slightly bigger rear seat than Triton
Dash a bit nicer than Triton

A few chrome pieces have been deleted
AnswerID: 635893

Reply By: Brian P17 - Wednesday, Apr 07, 2021 at 22:59

Wednesday, Apr 07, 2021 at 22:59
Probably pretty important to have a decent dealer too. We're waiting a bloody long time on an xterrain, there's a bt50 sitting in the lot but we're avoiding it because we have been burnt by them a couple of times on the wifes last car.
AnswerID: 635927

Reply By: Bazooka - Sunday, Apr 11, 2021 at 20:26

Sunday, Apr 11, 2021 at 20:26
Like Kazza said above Josh, I'd make a spreadsheet of key features and compare. When I was looking for a replacement vehicle for my Jackaroo I drove all the vehicles I was interested in and grabbed all the pamphlets. Then I did my spreadsheet. Short listing was pretty simple after that. The test drive also gave me an idea of dealer interest. Ironically after all that I decided I didn't want the hassle of CRD/DPF and went for reliability - a second hand V6 petrol Prado. Heavy on fuel but the motor is "unbreakable".

All the mid-range dual cabs seem to have a boring colour range and black interior so that's probably not a factor. Best looker is DMax imo. That Dmax red is pretty nice. Triton front end is ugly as is the new HiLux imo. Ranger a little dated. Mazda is well, Mazda.

Service intervals/costs?
Dealer/manufacturer support?

Toyota may have fixed the DPF problem but unless they can show you how they've overcome the dust problem I'd drop them down the list. From memory a member here works for a company which runs Hiluxes (???) and he confirmed the dust problem. Engine losing power was quite "exciting" iirc.

Been a couple of years since I did my research but at that time I got the impression that the DMax would win on reliability. Personally I'd plump for the Isuzu or Mazda depending on the deal available.

AnswerID: 635955

Follow Up By: joshg - Sunday, Apr 11, 2021 at 20:44

Sunday, Apr 11, 2021 at 20:44
Hi mate, thanks for the reply.
With the hilux, do you know who on here worked with the hilux. Luv to know more about the dust issue. I assume it was from the intake, does it change anything if you haveva snorkel etc.
FollowupID: 913774

Follow Up By: Bazooka - Sunday, Apr 11, 2021 at 23:34

Sunday, Apr 11, 2021 at 23:34
I did have a quick look for the thread on Hilux dust before I posted my comment Josh but no luck. I started a thread on the topic myself but it wasn't on that one. I'll do a more in-depth search tomorrow and post a link if I find it. Wrt a snorkel- been a while since I read about it but I suspect anything which reduces the amount of dust-filled air getting into your air filter box would be a help. The problem is both MAF sensor issues and longer term potential wear iirc. There is plenty of detailed info on the problem if you google, including one article which qoutes a university expert on fine particles. Seems a perfectly clean filter actually lets in finer dust so Toyotas suggestion to maintain a near pristine filter was poor advice.
FollowupID: 913781

Follow Up By: Bazooka - Monday, Apr 12, 2021 at 12:58

Monday, Apr 12, 2021 at 12:58
Finally (phew) located the comment I remembered Josh. Gbc is the user, not sure how you'd contact him. Towards the bottom of the thread you'll see my question about dust and his response. Not exactly what I remembered. I presumed he was talking about Hilux utes.

"Yes dusted MAF sensor (Airbox leak) presents at highway speed, floor it to get around a truck and it drops into limp home. Dangerous. Changing filters regularly achieves nothing because the dust is bypassing the seals, not the filter media."

This is the forum thread : Good News For Toyota Diesel Owners With DPF Issues

My other thread on Toyota dust problems with some links worth reading is here: Toyota Dust Problem

Found this comment on 200 series dust issues (similar to Hilux I gather)
Reply By: Blown4by - Friday, Dec 18, 2020 at 05:03
Pity they won't acknowledge that the LC 200 series air cleaner housings allow unfiltered dust to bypass the air filter element. The dust entering the engine leads to poor performance when the MAF sensor becomes coated with dust. Additionally, sufficient dust will cause 'dusting' of the cylinder bores, pistons & their rings, as well as potentially premature wear on the crankshaft, main & big end bearings & any other components lubricated by the engine oil. Not happy Jan!
AnswerID: 634459

All that said there are probably (must be) plenty of Hilux owners with no obvious dust/MAF problems, otherwise it would be a hot topic on social media forums. Just something to be aware of and perhaps ask more about before outlaying your $$$$$.
FollowupID: 913792

Follow Up By: swampy - Monday, Apr 12, 2021 at 19:11

Monday, Apr 12, 2021 at 19:11
The dust issue is obvious to the people who are in the no .

1/ the airfilter has no xtra dirt capacity to allow for plugging = to small
[if u look into industrial stuff they have way bigger filters than they actuaally need .Look into the design /selection criteria ] .
Engine then sucks air from anywhere it can .

2/ The air filter housing is pathetically flexible with a very small seal area .

3/ The filter seal is rubbish , to small

4/Toyota claim snorkels amplify the problem , to restrictive on a poor system to start with .

dust catcher pre cleaner
larger air filter
A secondary filter
optional oil bath ontop of the engine
Some Ag machine are done this way and work in dusty enviroments all the time
FollowupID: 913803

Reply By: swampy - Monday, Apr 12, 2021 at 19:47

Monday, Apr 12, 2021 at 19:47
good info on dusty breathing engines
roughly 12microns = .0005 inch
Reports are this by itself does not cause damage . Because clearances are bigger than that .
1/ rings slide and need perfect clean air
2/ as the oil becomes loaded with dirt it bridges the clearance of the crankshaft etc

Toyota is right ONLY PARTLY IN A LIMITED FASHION [enough to cover there arse ]
BUT only limited bursts of exposure and not repeated ever .
Remember your engine is worn outwell outta warranty goodluck with Toyota if that happens .

AnswerID: 635975

Reply By: joshg - Monday, Apr 12, 2021 at 19:55

Monday, Apr 12, 2021 at 19:55
Is the dust issue with the hilux enough of an issue to cross them off my list.
I am planning a kimberley trip next year which the ute would be subject to some pretty dusty conditions. Other than that trip it is just general driving and not dusty.
AnswerID: 635976

Reply By: Bazooka - Tuesday, Apr 13, 2021 at 20:31

Tuesday, Apr 13, 2021 at 20:31
Did you read this article Josh? It says Toyota Au was seeking a solution from Japan in July 2018! Surely they've made progress by now.

I'd email Toyota Customer Service asking if the new Hilux has a changed airbox design as a result of previous dust issues affecting MAF sensors. Refer them to the linked article so they have background.

Just found this from August 2020 which would concern me: Hilux Dust Problems Addressed.
Appears no change was made to the airbox they simply made the MAF sensor less sensitive in software. Their response to DPF issues was similar. Bluff, tell owners to follow new procedures etc until a class action forced their hands.

Makes you wonder about the knowledge/integrity of reviewers.
AnswerID: 635983

Follow Up By: joshg - Tuesday, Apr 13, 2021 at 20:39

Tuesday, Apr 13, 2021 at 20:39
Hey Bazooka,

Thats interesting. Everything i can find is that they haven't changed the air intake. It probably wouldn't be a concern if I wasn't thinking of a WA kimberley trip next year which would subject it to a lot of dust.

Seems all the new utes are having a few issues. Been following a lot of FB pages.
Dmax juat takes too long to get. Even though the same the BT50 guys seem to be getting a few engine lights come up, most say they are just simple things like seat belt sensors or something.

Only one that hasn't really done a big change is the Ranger.
FollowupID: 913817

Reply By: Bazooka - Tuesday, Apr 27, 2021 at 13:54

Tuesday, Apr 27, 2021 at 13:54
Fwiw (not much) and in case you missed it Josh:
Drive Best Dual Cab OTY 2021
AnswerID: 636170

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