Kluger Fuel consumption

Submitted: Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 15:30
ThreadID: 32149 Views:6400 Replies:7 FollowUps:17
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Owner feebback after completing 6,200klm return trip Brisbane to Tassie during Dec 2005 (with 3,200 of those klms travelled in Tassie). The Kluger proved amazingly economical, with a trip average of 10.8lt/100klms. Best figure was 8.9lts/100klms between Melbourne and Wodonga (Vic). All figures based on Kluger fuel computer. Vehicle contained 2 x adults, 2 x mid age teenage kids and 500lt roof pod. Simply apply measured foot pressure on the pedal and apply a fair bit of sensible driving practice, and excellent fuel consumption is possible. Also like to plug the Spirit of Tasmania III ferry service from Sydney to Devonport; EXCELLENT VALUE! Costs $59 to board your vehicle. Go see Tassie, you will love the place, especially in any off bitumen capable vehicle. Also like to recommend Tasvillas as they offer very good value accommodation with3 1/2 and 4 star ratings.
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Reply By: 4runner - Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 15:47

Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 15:47
The Kluger ( apart from the darned awful name ) is a very nice vehicle. It would be an even better vehicle if somebody at Toyoto head office used what little brains they have and turned it into a part time 4x4 with manual locking front hubs ,Hi/Lo transfer box and with a good solid reliable manual gearbox ,or Automatic, for those who dont like shifting cogs, and you would have an instant winner. It beats the Pathfinder on looks and the new Land Rover that has zero ground clearance. The Kluger would fill the void left by the V6 4Runner. Dont fit any of these computerised electronic traction control gimmicks, and other electronic gizmos that can go wrong, after you have been pounding the corrugations for thousands of Kms, as the micro processors and solder joints are all liable to fail, and there you are stuck in the bush with a car that wont go - and not a mechanic /computer genius in sight. Why do you think that 4Runners` and Surfs` are fetching such astronomically high prices. Be cause they are a bloody solid and well made vehcile with little to wrong, and relatively easy on the DIY pocket
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Follow Up By: GaryInOz (Vic) - Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 16:11

Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 16:11
in other words, turn the motor around, put a decent transmission behind it, a real transfer case, decent front diff/axle etc... In other words a real 4WD instead of a softroader.

If you want a decent 4WD look at the 4.2 Patrol, LR Defender or other such vehicle.

If you want a softroader, buy a Toyota.
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Follow Up By: Member - Doug T (QLD) - Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 22:14

Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 22:14
Got to chip you on the Landrover statement you made re ground clearance , Landrover Disco 3 if thats what you mean has adjustable clearance which gives it a 700mm wading depth, a bit like those old Citroens but much more refined.
Four-corner, electronic air suspension ensures a smooth, constant ride height irrespective of load, number of passengers or weight of luggage. The air springs are computer controlled, giving automatically softer or firmer springing depending on road or track conditions. And because they are cross-linked, they allow extreme axle articulation over rocks or deep ruts.
A further bonus is that the ride height can also be manually selected – offering, for instance, the ability to lower the vehicle by 55mm to make it easier to get in and out of and to load.

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Follow Up By: 4runner - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 11:44

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 11:44
Doug , I understand where you are coming from, and yes they do have some remarkable features, but the big question is what happens when it all goes wrong and you should happen to be in the middle of the the Australian Outback. Who is going to fix the air sprung suspension and thwe computer that alters the ride height etc etc. The simpler the car , the less electronic garbage that is now being installed in some 4x4s the more reliable the vehicle is going to be. Years ago before all this one upmanship with electronic clap trap became available, if you broke down you could invariably get mobile again, with a bit of welding here and there, and being a bush mechanic would almost gaurantee that you would make it to the next port of call. But in these new vehicles - fat chance. You need to take your own specialist technician with you ,if you want to wander far and wide,not to mention the diagnostic equipment you would have to carry. Todays mechanics are nothing more than trained diagnostic technicians and spare parts fitters. Case in point. I wanted a Pitman arm replaced on my sons SURF. Sorry said the Toyota service advisor, we dont replace them we have to send the whole steering box away.. After about 45 minutes, some rust remover and CRC, a heavy hammer and cold chisel the Pitman arm came off and I installed the new one - all done at home. And I`m 65. What todays mechanics have still to learn I have already forgotten - and they call them mechanics/technicians. I wonder how many of todays mechanics could rebuild a diff from nothing but the new parts supplied - very few if any.
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Follow Up By: Member - Doug T (QLD) - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 12:11

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 12:11
Geeez your an older Pr**k than i am ...shhh 63 in June ,Well mate you speak nothing but Candy and Sugar , Ohh so true it is about the Electronic gizmo's and ever so nice to have but and a big BUT as you say out there if it don't work your in deep s*@! ,Mate thats why i love my old troopie, leaf springs, headlights that cost $18 to replace, manual window winders that i can replace myself, no computerised engine management [thats my job] and plenty of used parts all over the country , and talking of country check this out on my web site, and if anyone else reads this please go have a look/

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Follow Up By: old mate - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 12:28

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 12:28
I just read "our country". Well written and already forwarded on to others.
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Reply By: 4runner - Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 17:30

Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 17:30
Hi GaryinOz.
Yeah mate you summed it up well. I wrote to Toyota Australia about bringing the American 4Runner to OZ as its a darn nice vehicle and still has some of its ancestor lines, but all I got was a terse reply to the effect that they (USA0 sell 230,000 car a month to our 200,000 or less per year, and the cost of tooling up for the USA 4Runner would not jusrtify the costs. I wrote back and said import the bloody thing in RHD version - everything else is imported. SILENCE was the stern reply. But seriously at the moment our 4Runner is just for the wife and my self. My son has his own Toyota Surf. But if I were in the market for a brand new 4x4 then the 4.2 litre turbo diesel would be the way to go.
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Follow Up By: GaryInOz (Vic) - Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 19:03

Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 19:03
Funny thing is, I used to own a 1981 Subaru Leone 4WD wagon that had a decent dual range gearbox, north-south engine and was available with an aotomatic if you wanted (basic Subaru design that started in 1972!!!). That damned thing would run rings around ANY of the softroaders today. 2" lift kit, Weber carbie, Peugeot Rims (14") with some decent tyres and she would go most places, to the embarrassment of most larger "true" 4WD's.

Mate of mine took his '75 model (1400cc "Ugly Duckling") across the Simpson in 1979. Lets see ANY of the new softroaders do that............
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Follow Up By: old mate - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 07:18

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 07:18
Gees Gary, you really have an issue with soft roaders don't you.

I didn't think that the soft roader manufacturers market their vehicles for trips across the Simpson or for pounding thousands of kms on corrugations. Most people who buy them don't want to go across the SD anyway and know they would probabaly stuggle anyway if they tried. Not every one wants or can own a big 4by but with a softy they can still have a vehicle that they can use for the city and get out and see the country.
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Follow Up By: GaryInOz (Vic) - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 09:46

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 09:46
My point is there is absolutly NO NEED for softroaders (modern incarnation). They are heavier than they need to be due to the rear wheel drive parts and they have. They have no more ability than an old Ford/Holden ute (that farmers have been using for the last 50 years). Generally they have air intakes that are ridiculously low and susceptible to water ingestion (search on this forum for a few horror stories). As for the safety of AWD in urban areas, higher CofG and poor visibility out the rear sort of negates any additional "safety" that may have been generated.

The only reason we have "softroaders" in Australia is because 4WD vehicles still only attract 5% import duty whereas the 2WD equivalents attract 10% duty. The manufacturers produce a cheap and nasty 4wd system that may/may not work to any degree (early CRV's), and are then able to circumvent the 10% duty.

Subaru was one of the only companies that actually "got it right" with a two speed transfer case and selectable 2WD/4WD, like the "big boys".

The solution to the problem is a simple test for the 5% duty
1: Dual range gearbox with at least 1.8:1 difference between High/Low ratio.
2: 205mm clearance at rest with engine off.
3: Full sized spare tyre.
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Follow Up By: old mate - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 10:31

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 10:31
I would like to see an old Holden/Falcon ute do some of the beaches and forest tracks that I have seen soft roaders do here in QLD. Absolutely no contest. Some people just can't accept the fact that SOME of these things are going to the same places they are after they have spent big bucks buying a "real" 4by. And things have come along way since the early CRV's. You should try some other websites where there are plenty of people who have got to places in an AWD where the big boys have come stuck. Not every one wants to drive through water.

Again most owners know the limitations. These AWD's will go to places that Holdens and Falcons can not get to and it opens up the bush/beach/country to more and more people. I bet people in rural buisness are more than happy to a new wave of people spending money in their soft roaders.

And what about the height issue you raise re visibility and CoG. Are cruisers/patrols etc better because they are a "real 4by"? Some of these 4WD and AWD have better rear visibilty than a commodore sedan.

I take it you don't think much of the Subaru Outback then? And by the way, I drive a "real" 4By, low range and everything.

If all these soft roaders were crap, they wouldn't be selling any.
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Follow Up By: 4runner - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 11:26

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 11:26
Hi OLD MATE. I do apologise if I misled you. In Perth and particularly WA, the conditions here dont lend themselves very well to softroaders by the virtual reality of the terrain. Queenslaand and WA are two different worlds or "countries" for that matter. You have magnificent beaches and rain forrests etc where a soft roader would be in its element ,but not in WA. Here its flat and boring unless you get way out of the metro areas of Perth and other country towns. And no, I never said or made any disparaging remarks about the Subarau Outback or LIberty or any Subaru vehicle. The demand for them in WA exceeds supply, and I said in an eralier post that people I know who have them ,are over the moon with their Subarus` As I have mentioned I have a Toyota V6 4Runner, simply because the kids have all grown up and got 4x4 s of there own , my wife and I dont need a Patrol or a Landcruiser or anthing that big. And my 4Runner is a proper 4x4 not a pretend vehicle.It is also fitted with DeTroit lockers front and rear Many a time I have had to go to the rescue of someone who has got themselves into serious trouble in their heavy Patrols and `Cruisers , and have had to winch or snatch strap them out of their predicament. Also the 4Runner is easier to park in our ridiculously small parking bays, and I can get into under cover parking where Patrols and Landcruisers have almost become instant convertables, due to bad designing of parking garages. There is a bigger demand for genuine 4x4s in WA then softroaders, but that doesnt mean to say there arent any on the roads. The Ford Territory beng the most sought after vehicle. As I am well and truly past my use by date, and retired, I have no allegiance to any motor manufacturer. Its all based on what I read in our local mags and see first hand on our roads. Hope that puts your mind at rest.
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Follow Up By: old mate - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 12:00

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 12:00
G'Dat 4 runner.

I was actually responding to Gary's posts against soft roaders. Also Gary was praising one subaru product whilst they make the type of vehicle he doesn't like. As I can see by your reply, you can tell the pros and cons with soft roaders where some people are just dead set against them. Hope that clears that up. Avagoodweekend.
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Follow Up By: Member - Doug T (QLD) - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 12:39

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 12:39
old mate

Thanks for the comment about "Our Country" You know where i'm comin' from eh ,..lol About soft Roaders or what ever or all road cars would suit better , well some one a few years ago took a Subaru Wagon across the SD ,he made it after many tows and digging and reackoned never again, So yeh they have their place and use , I had a Subaru 1600 wagon back in the mid 70s and yeh it was goon on slippery roads ,It never went off road and we had that car for 7 years and had no problems with it, didn't even need to take it back for warranty
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Follow Up By: GaryInOz (Vic) - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 14:03

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 14:03
Old Mate,

"...I take it you don't think much of the Subaru Outback then? And by the way, I drive a "real" 4By, low range and everything...."

Read the first sentence of my first reply.

The only reason I chose to single out the Subaru is that it was/is the only vehicle to have something resembling a proper transfer case (although later ones have forgone the FWD/4WD selector in favour of an electronically operated clutch), and a "conventional" layout.

No Subaru could ever be called a tall vehicle in stock form. Compare them to a Tribute, CRV, Terios, X-Trail, etc. Now look underneath them and tell me which you would prefer to be in when the rains come and wash away you camping area.


We had one guy come on to Outerlimits a while ago wanting to wheel his CRV.

"Hey All,

I'm thinking of buying a new Honda CRV, stockie and no mods. I'd like to go off-road every so often, including on some sand.

Keen on your advise: how would it go?, but please, constructive critisism only :0)



My reply:

"Ummm, it won't.

First of all, have a look at the CRV, lots of nice matte black painted lower panel to make it look higher. At least the dents and damage won't show up as much.... Now, where is a nice strong point to mount some tow hooks, ummm no...

Now, (if you can) get your head under it and have a look at all the mechanical bits. Easy to see aren't they?? Everything is nice and low to the ground without any significant protection. Makes thing easy to replace when you break them (albeit at a significant cost and frequency).

Now step inside. That was easy wasn't it?... Does it have a 4WD knob? No??? Hmmm... must be an automatic system. When does it engage??? (looking through the manual) Ahh, it only engages after it detects slip. Bit late then isnt it? Can you lock it in 4WD....No (well yes up to walking pace then it lets go of any traction you have. In mud/sand vehicle speed does not equall speed on the speedo). Does it have any low range if you do get stuck?...No.

Now have a look at this forum. Do you see any frequent mention of a CRV offroad section (even in this "Other models" thread)?

Yes, your CRV will get you far off road, just make sure you have enough holiday leave available for the looooong walk back to civilisation, and enjoy selecting a vehicle next time that is more appropriate for the task at hand when you get home.


never heard from him again..............

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Follow Up By: old mate - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 15:26

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 15:26
So basically a guy goes on to a forum and asks for advice and you cut his legs off. I agree that Outer Limits is not the best place for CRV advice. His definition of off road is different to yours and mine. Re read some of my posts and see that not everyone is into heavy duty stuff. you may not accept it but these softies are capable, they may not go everywhere the big boys go but they can get to places that the normal family sedan can't with out "breakages and taking extra holiday time for the loooooooong walk back to civilisation. They are suitable in some situations and unsuitable in others. They are here to stay due to their popularity and we can only hope that buyers of these will realise that they are not full blown four wheel drives and drive them accordingly. They do have a place in the market as they provide people with an oppurtunity to get off road in some capacity with out the huge price tag.

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Follow Up By: GaryInOz (Vic) - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 16:22

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 16:22
"...and we can only hope that buyers of these will realise that they are not full blown four wheel drives and drive them accordingly...."

That starts when they are marketed appropriately. That simply doesn't happen at the moment.

As I have said before (in other threads), above reasonable efforts to help, I will not put my vehicle or my life at risk trying to recover vehicles/drivers that have absolutely driven beyond their capabilities or the capabilities of their vehicles. Fair is fair, and safe is safe. There are very few if any "softroaders " that have anywhere decent to anchor a recovery eye. If you do not have adequate, safe RECOVERY HOOKS/EYES on your vehicle, then it is unsafe to snatch. I will happily take you to the nearest town to arrange salvage yourself.

The Subaru's that we had in our club had additional tow points attatched to the front subframe bolts or front bullbars (regulation 6 point attatchment through subframe to strongpoints on body), and most had towbars (ditto).
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Reply By: 4runner - Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 19:21

Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 19:21
Its incredible how reliable and capable those old Subarus` were in those days. Would still run rings around the new 4x4s and the softroaders are a dead loss - for what my opinion is worth. Take the Holden Adventra. What a useless bucket of puss if ever there was a vehicle to come out of GM. Cant sell them for love nor money, and one hardly sees them on the road here in WA. See more Ford Territory`s on the roads here. Subaru well what can I say - demand exceeds supply in Perth and there is a waiting list, adn those that I know who have them swear by them. But the Toyoto Kluger is good value for the $$$$$$ you have to pay.
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Follow Up By: Axle - Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 20:37

Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 20:37
Mate i have a subaru liberty 1994 mod. the places we took that before i bought the landy tray back is truly amazing. there 4wd system is as good as two limited slip diffs, and nothing fails!!.
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Follow Up By: GaryInOz (Vic) - Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 21:03

Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 21:03
We used to say you could treat them like dogs s**t and they would still come back for more. Early 80's models had their weak spots (front CV boots, cracking front DOJ's) but they were dead simple to fix, even out in the sticks.
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Reply By: Axle - Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 21:22

Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 21:22
Hi Brusav
Great to see someone having a good holiday. AS far as fuel consumption figues quoted ,Not that amazing for size of vechicle. My landrover 130 tray back weighing 2.3t towing 1.5t from Sydney to brisbane averaged 10 Ltr/ 100 ks..?
AnswerID: 162888

Reply By: TUFF IFS LUX - Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 21:39

Saturday, Mar 25, 2006 at 21:39
g'day all,

i gota leased a kluger for the misses and yeah it's a nice car, solidly built and very safe. On the freeway Ive had the fuel consumption down to 8.9 per hundred as the previous blokes post said, but around town the consumption goes upto 11-11.5 and thats accelerating softly. I wouldnt recommend it as a around town car, I personally reckon the fuel consumption could've been bit better round town. If Toyota put the 3.0Litre D4D engine in it, It would outsell anything else in the category.

On reply to the blokes comments bout writing to Toyota bout the US 4-Runner, we recently had at my workshop(at Toyota itself) the director John Conomos and over a bbq I had a chat to him, very smart bloke he is; anyway, he was saying he'd love to get the next model Tundra to Australia, but is facing difficulties from peole higher up. Says, that Toyota has plans to install a V8 petrol/hybrid engine in the truck and performance and economy wont be matched in it's class.

Also Toyota in Thailand who build the current Hilux also produce a wagon bodied Hilux called the adventra or adventurer, something like that. Heard a rumour toyota trying to secure that model for local market aswell. Would be a real hot seller. Same platform as current hilux, but the wagon body end with the rar bumper just behind the back wheel, so it'd be about a foot shorter.

Over and out!

AnswerID: 162892

Reply By: 4runner - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 01:49

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 01:49
Also heard on the grape vine that the Mitsubishi Challenger was being phased out and the replacement was to be a Triton Wagon along the lines of the Challenger. I often wonder why the Challenger never really took off as its mechancals are just about bullet proof , and those that have them, swear by them, yet in the that mid size range, have only seen a handful fitted out for serious off road work. Great shame as its a beaut vehicle and solid. Guess the wife and I will still have to settle for our humble 4Runner - just a pity about the lack of legroom in the back seat - but then I dont have to sit in the back - do I !!!!!
AnswerID: 162924

Reply By: 4runner - Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 13:20

Sunday, Mar 26, 2006 at 13:20
Geez guys, we certainly opened up a can of worms. Its obviously that you can please some of the people some of the time but you cant please all of the people all of the time. How wonderful - if not boring - if we all agreed on the same issues.
Must be off for my afternoon siesta. I have earned it and deserve it.
AnswerID: 162951

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