Submitted: Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 12:58
ThreadID: 24081 Views:21234 Replies:12 FollowUps:10
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Have taken a big bite of the reality apple & acknowledge that my dream of updating to 4.2TD Patrol is beyond my limited resources (NO PATROL JOKES THANKS).

Can someone give me feedback re the BRAVO TURBO DIESEL, I currently run a 2.6 Petrol Bravo and on past performance would be happy to stay with the brand. I would particuarly like to hear from anyone who has run both petrol and diesel or had the opportunity to drive them back to back, especially in a "real" situation as against the usual new car test drive.

Any faults or shortcomings I should be aware of? Fuel economy etc:? Any info at all would be greatly appreciated.

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Reply By: Penguin (NSW) - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 15:41

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 15:41
Hi Ian,

I have a friend with a Bravo T/D. It originally started life as a normally aspirated diesel but was considered gutless. A quick trip to Berrima fixed all that. He tows a van quite happily and has been known to lurk on this forum.

If I ask him very nicely, he might even come out of the shadows and talk to us. Come on, I know you're out there.

AnswerID: 116909

Reply By: conman - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 16:13

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 16:13
Hi Ian

My TD courirer uses around 11 litres per 1ookms, bit less on the hwy on 31's, even though its done 260000kms.

Power is good, and does well off road.
AnswerID: 116913

Follow Up By: Member - Bill S (NSW) - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 19:46

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 19:46
HI IAN, If you had FITCH fitted you would be using 1to2 litres LESS per 100klms travelled. Have a look at it www.fitchcatalyst
My 80srs turbo diesel returns8.5 to9.5 klms per litre with a F300 fitted
FollowupID: 372448

Reply By: Rob from Cairns Offroad Training & Tours - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 17:04

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 17:04
We took 6 Bravos and a tray back up to Cape York in 98 just after they were released. They were all stock standard and handled the OTL fine. They are a good honest economical litlle truck and work fine within their limitations. Cheers Rob.
AnswerID: 116917

Reply By: 1 Mark - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 17:40

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 17:40
I have one as work vehicle (not my choice company vehicle) and it is gutless . When using it to try and climb any sort of hill from a standing start until the turbo cuts in at about 2400 RPM you go nowhere. Try taking off at an intersection without reving the ring out of and you will soon be in trouble with oncoming traffic.Off road capabilities are very limited .As for towing Good luck.
Don,t waste your money go for Rodeo,Navara or Hilux.
AnswerID: 116927

Follow Up By: phil - Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 16:05

Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 16:05
I think that there must be something wrong with your turbo setup. My TD Bravo turbo is at full speed by 1800RPM and the torque is there also.

Phil I
FollowupID: 372554

Follow Up By: conman - Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 17:42

Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 17:42
I can take off in first without using the accelerator, just clutch and idle speed.
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Reply By: Member - Ian W (NSW) - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 18:00

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 18:00
Please chase up your friend - I'm interested.

Within limitations, you worry me! - anything in particular, do you have time to expand?

Aw gee mate! Not what I wanted to hear, but then I did ask didn't I.

C'mon peoples, there must be more opinions out there, (even if it's not complimentary), I'm keen to hear anything that might help my decision process.

It's not that i'm indecisive, I'm just not sure.

AnswerID: 116934

Reply By: 1 Mark - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 19:26

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 19:26
I did not mean to sound too critical BUT I do use this type of vehicle every day. If you could overcome the Turbo lag this would improve it,s take off ability. Once wound up it goes well for a 2.5ltr T/D ,it is down low that lets the vehicle down badly.
Do yourself a favour and go and test drive one and then maybe try another brand of T/D.
At the end of the day it is your choice and money.
Good luck.
AnswerID: 116943

Reply By: geocacher (djcache) - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 21:18

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 21:18
1 Mark,

I just have to disagree with you. Have you got a lemon?

Mine is great! 2002 TD Courier with 80,000 on the clock. I have taken it all over the high country and into some pretty steep country.

Both on descent under compression braking and ascent in high and low range I find it excellent. Good engine with well matched gearing and diff ratios. To date I have had it in sand, steep stuff, mud and bog holes and general touring and high country touring.

Up Collingwood Spur out of Talbotville it easily outstripped the 3ltr diesel Hilux and climbed away from it.

I tour with fairly loaded rear with drawers, 120ltr touring tank, 60ltrs of water and fridge, with gear for at least 2 adults and often the kids.

On a night drive with the club in the Strathbogies after rain it climbed stuff that had the lifted 'luxes on M/Ts on the side of the track and making second attempts, drawing incredulous remarks and requests to know what tyres I was running (Cooper ST's incidently).

Fuel economy is good and when I tow the boat with a family load of bikes and gear up over the divide to go to the nsw south coast it performs well though when towing it does bog down a bit when climbing out of the likes of Omeo towards Hotham or from Talbingo up on to the top.

Mates have the new Navara which I would consider next time, I wouldn't buy a Hilux of the same era (haven't driven the new one) as they are overpriced for what they are. Can't say I've driven the Triton.

The only thing that has let me down was clearance under the diffs leading me to get stuck in Toolangi - but to be fair that would have happened to any vehicle running the factory height wheels in the places I got stuck.

I'd own another one if I had a choice. My mate I just did the Canning with (in his Patrol) has remarked on several occasions that it is a well setup and capable vehicle.

You can see my setup here.

Mark sounds like he might be expecting SS ute performance out of his. I drive 6.5ltr turbo diesel chevs, and 7.3 ltr TD F350's and I don't have a problem with my Courier.

AnswerID: 116959

Follow Up By: geocacher (djcache) - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 21:24

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2005 at 21:24
PS I was looking at GU 3 ltr TD's before I bought it but couldn't get one with low kms for the $ I had to spend so I bought the dual cab instead. Similar choice to make so understand what you are going through.

FollowupID: 372463

Follow Up By: Member - Ian W (NSW) - Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 08:51

Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 08:51
Thank's to all who took the time to reply - much appreciated - looks like I'll have to try & line up some serious test drives of various vehicles.
I'm not too keen on Hi Lux due to the snotty sales people I ran into at any number of dealerships, would you believe one dealer wanted me to commit prior a test drive.
When I stated exactly what model & accessories I wanted and declined to disclose if I had other prices one sales person refused to provide a price,
he stated quote "I sell cars, not prices". I can only assume that Hi Lux's walk out the door as fast as they get them in and it's a sellers market, needless to say I didn't see any walking out the door as I walked out. Thanked the guy for his time, grabbed wife by the hand, and proceeded to exit with salesman following me inferring that I was unreasonable and obviosly not a serious buyer.

FollowupID: 372490

Follow Up By: geocacher (djcache) - Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 10:49

Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 10:49
Hmmm. Looks like NSW Toyota dealers have some training to do. Or firing. Whichever.

Publicity like this in these forums is expensive.

I know a guy who after a reasonable share of first division tried to buy an RX-7 (early eighties at the time) new from a Mazda dealer in shorts and a t-shirt and couldn't even get a test drive.

Needless to say he paid cash to a competitor for a different sports car down the road.

On the flip side one of my cousins and a few mates got dressed up in suits after a wedding they'd been to. Put a ream of paper in a briefcase each (borrowed from one of the guys dad) and went and test drove cars for a day all over melbourne and between them they couldn't have afforded a tank of petrol at the time - they were all broke uni students.

I bought a $50,000+ Gen III Berlina in Melbourne because the guy at the Shepparton dealer didn't think I was serious. I would have bough

On the whole I'd have to say that buying cars is a generally unpleasant experience for me mainly due to the fact that I have generally dealt with idiots. There are a couple of noted exceptions. If I had treated people (customers, clients whatever.) like that when I worked in sales I would never have made budget and would have been fired.

I would & did spend a bit more to have a pleasant experience with a good dealer rather than buy purely on price. I know I'm not alone on that. In one case it meant buying locally and on the other occasion going to Melbourne.

Credit where credit is due: Thumbs up so far to David Brearly at Penfold Holden in Melbourne (no longer working there but if you find him let me know) and Phil Blair at Muston's Subaru in Shepparton.

Car dealers should seriously look at their staff's attitudes as I reckon they lose more sales as a result of staff than price.

FollowupID: 372497

Reply By: Brad - Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 09:36

Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 09:36
Hi Ian,

I had A Bravo Petrol and loved it. Eventually traded it for a Bravo 4X4 diesel and love it as well. Have taken it to Fraser pulling off road camper trailer and 2 kids no problem. I am taking it around Australia next year. Only problem is small fuel tank ( mine had a 60l ) but put a long range 138 litre and will buy another one if they are still made when the one I have now is up for renewal.

On a full tank without towing I get nearly 1300klm. Going to Byron at easter got near on 1,000klm on a full tank.

AnswerID: 117004

Reply By: jj - Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 14:41

Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 14:41
Hi Ian,
I'll probably draw some flak here, but I have driven a 2001 model Bravo SDX turbo diesel 4x4 for 75,000k and I have found it to be barely adequate. We do a bit of sand driving and the lack of power and the turbo lag sucks. I have found the suspension to be way too soft when loaded up on rough tracks and they lack clearance. The fuel tank is way too small. The engine revs way to hard on the highway for good economy and I have to drive it hard in town to keep up with the traffic. However, the suspension gives a great ride for a truck and there is room for adults in the back seat which some of it's competitors lack. Mechanically I have not had a single problem in 75,000ks. We pick up a jayco camper trailer next week and I don't believe the engine is up to towing it on the sand. I will be trading the bravo in on a nissan patrol or a petrol prado.
best of luck with your choice, JJ.
AnswerID: 117064

Follow Up By: Brad - Tuesday, Jun 28, 2005 at 10:08

Tuesday, Jun 28, 2005 at 10:08
Hi JJ,

I pulled offroad camper with 4 people around Fraser with my Bravo, and had no problems at all. I guess everybodys situation is different though.

FollowupID: 373149

Reply By: Member - Ian W (NSW) - Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 17:57

Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 17:57
Thanks for all the replys,

I suppose I was vague from the point of view that I did not explain my uses.

I'm not a hardcore off roader, I tow a Halls Off Road Camper Trailer with a boat on top - just "HER" and I. Yes we do do heaps of K's on rough corrugated roads, National Parks & State Forests, we have not got into any beach or sand towing only because it's not todate been presented. I chose to purchase my first 4wd purely for the confidence of being able to tackle loose, soggy tracks etc: when getting into the coastal esturies & lakes we like to fish - when there is just the two of you stuck on a soggy track miles from anywhere and the mossies biting, it's hardly the time to renew your wedding vows if you know what I mean.

As a side issue - buying new cars

After my nasty experiences with supercillious Toyota Salesmen I rang Mazda Australia and explained that I would like to test drive 2 & 4wd Bravo Crew Cab Utes back to back and asked what they could do - Something like twelve minutes later they returned my call and gave me two dealer locations where it was possible, after I nominated McGrath Liverpool they said they would have the dealer phone me. Within 15 minutes a sales consultant Paul Clarke phoned me and asked when it would suit me to test drive. I arrived at the dealership to find both vehicles out on the driveway side by side and ready to go.
After test driving I asked Paul for his first and last price which he provided with no tapdancing whatsoever, and which happened to be 2500 under the next best price I had received.

THAT was a pleasant buying experience.

AnswerID: 117101

Follow Up By: jj - Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 19:59

Thursday, Jun 23, 2005 at 19:59
Hi Ian,
They will certainly do what you require a vehicle to do, but resale value is something you should consider as well.
Having a 4 year old Bravo to get rid of has made me accutely aware of the poor resale value they command compared to other similar initially priced vehicles.
Best of luck, JJ
FollowupID: 372597

Follow Up By: cristo - Friday, Jun 24, 2005 at 08:57

Friday, Jun 24, 2005 at 08:57
Ian W,

I work at ford at Broadmeadows and the service garage boys here have taken a fleet of couriers and other 4wd's up to the Cape York. Their report on the Courier is that it was 'bulletproof', and performed very well. I don't know whether you know, but the Courier is a rebadged Bravo, coming out of the same factory overseas. Maybe you should consider the Ford b/c it is cheaper than the Mazda.
FollowupID: 372647

Reply By: RAGS AND DAGS - Tuesday, Jun 28, 2005 at 12:25

Tuesday, Jun 28, 2005 at 12:25
The Bravo is out of date and old spec in every way.

You get what you pay for .
AnswerID: 117880

Reply By: Member - Ian W (NSW) - Tuesday, Jun 28, 2005 at 12:51

Tuesday, Jun 28, 2005 at 12:51
Yes, I now see that from the plethora of information you offer in support of your supposition.
AnswerID: 117884

Follow Up By: RAGS AND DAGS - Tuesday, Jun 28, 2005 at 13:24

Tuesday, Jun 28, 2005 at 13:24
Fact not supposition.

Direct Injection mean anything to you ?

FollowupID: 373172

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