4x4 Utes

Submitted: Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 07:00
ThreadID: 56613 Views:17785 Replies:10 FollowUps:10
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I am trying to decide which 4x4 mid sized ute would be best for off road work - Navara, Rodeo, Hilux, BT50... Read lots about each, but anecdotal material is often best - any experiences which would help me decide ?
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Reply By: Member - Olcoolone (S.A) - Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 08:58

Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 08:58
All the utes have good point and bad points, before we got our Hilux we read all the reports about how this one is no good and that one is no good but at the end of the day they are all reliable and very capable vehicles.

We choose the Hilux because we needed an extra cab and only Hilux and Rodeo had them available, very happy with the Hilux.

The one I would look at now would probably be the Triton with rear diff lock...5 year warranty on everything and 10 on the drive train.

The Hilux would be a close second.

Would I buy a Triton over the Hilux ..don't know!, I can't fault the Hilux but the rear diff lock and warranty looks good.

There was a lot of talk that the new 4X4's are to car like and not built strong.....they might of got the car like thing right but not being built strong is BS.

Like anything if you don't treat something right you will break it.

The first three things I would do to any 4X4 ute is....
1) Fit better tyres with a larger profile.
2) Install a 2 inch suspension lift.
3) Fit a bigger fuel tank. (make sure one is available for your vehicle first.)

End of the day you make the decision yourself and don't go on the words of other because you may be disappointed.

Regards Richard

AnswerID: 298409

Reply By: bms - Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 16:57

Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 16:57
I went through this about a year ago and finished up with a 3.2 Did Triton with factory diff lock.
I have since put an ARB winch bar, 265/75 AT tyres on 8" rims, suspension kit on and are in the process of doing a long range tank rear bar etc.
I'm very impressed with the vehicle overall bar a few minor things and would even go as far as to say that it's most probably the best off road in it's class once the above mods are done.
Also have found it to be very tough as others have.

Have a look on newtriton.net lots of info there

Hope this helps bms
AnswerID: 298453

Reply By: Ian from Thermoguard Instruments - Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 17:07

Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 17:07
If actual off-road performance is the main criteria then none of the IFS utes you've listed would hold a candle to a Land Rover Defender 110 single cab or 130 dual cab. And it wouldn't need big$ spent on changing the standard suspension either, as one reply suggests the Jap utes need.

Gawd, I can hear the HOWLS of derision starting already...
AnswerID: 298457

Follow Up By: Ian from Thermoguard Instruments - Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 10:18

Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 10:18
Ow, C'mon guys! Not even one bite? Or is such a fundamental truth just too hard to dispute...

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Follow Up By: Leroy - Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 10:58

Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 10:58
it's not a mid sized ute!

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Follow Up By: Ian from Thermoguard Instruments - Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 12:25

Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 12:25
Ya reckon Leroy?

Haven't run a tape over them all but I'd be surprised if there were significant differences in overall dimensions, load capacity (nominally 1 tonne?), seating capacity, etc. And they are all available as 4 cyl turbo-diesels and dual-cabs.

I guess the fact that you are suggesting that the 'fender can also hold it's own against 'big' Toyota LC and Nissan Patrol utes in terms of toughness, towing capacity and 'real' off-road ability only adds to my augument that it is king of the mid-size sector - if off-road ability is a key criteria (as per the original post).

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Reply By: James M - Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 19:10

Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 19:10
I'm in the same boat looking for a 4wd ute. I hear lots of good things about the new triton, but I hear very little about the ford ranger.
The ranger appears to be cheaper, yet I see very few on the road.
Does anyone have any opinions?
AnswerID: 298500

Follow Up By: Mogul - Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 19:28

Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 19:28
Ford Ranger = Mazda BT50
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Follow Up By: James M - Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 19:43

Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 19:43
I hear or see little of the Mazda BT50 as well.
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Follow Up By: bms - Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 20:34

Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 20:34
James I had a ford courier / mazda bravo before this new Triton and it was a great ute, BUT I found it was not built strong enough for serious off road work.
I had to replace the idler arm ,pitman arm a ball joint and just before we sold it the gearbox and transfer case.
If you are looking for a ute for touring with the occasional off road foray they are ideal but not if you're going to use it seriously off road imho.
If you look underneath the front end it looks a bit on the lightly built side of things to me imo.
On the other hand a guy on newtriton.net is running 35's on his ML with no issues so far and it gets a work out off road.

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Reply By: Crackles - Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 20:51

Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 20:51
Our company has just ordered over 40 Tritons & 10 Rangers. Along with other features the Mitsubishi's were chosen for their offroad ability, towing power & shorter waiting time. The Fords were chosen as the extra cabs have suicide doors for easy access & heavier rear springs for load carrying. Having driven many of the current releases there is very little between them. Will be interesting to see how they go long term.
Cheers Craig..........
AnswerID: 298533

Reply By: Brian (Montrose, Vic.) - Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 21:05

Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 21:05
As the owner of an MK Triton, previous model, I'm firmly in the Triton camp. The only thing I don't like about the new Triton (ML model) is that as a style side ute the tray is very small compared to older and other utes, my suggestion, on any of the new utes would be to replae the style side rear with a tray. Other than that, in recent years I have found Mitsubishi utes to be all bar unbreakable and quite reasonable on the milage too.
Brian T
AnswerID: 298543

Reply By: Member - Trevor M (WA) - Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 21:10

Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 21:10
I have recently purchased a Ford Ranger after 2 Hiluxes over the past 15 years. My 10 year old 3L diesel Hilux was an incredible vehicle - we drove down the CSR last Sept. and it never missed a beat but I needed to get a vehicle to tow a caravan.

The main reason for the change was price, some $9k less than a comparative Hilux - supercab tray back - which as a retiree, was an important factor. But I also felt it drove better than the new Hilux and I think the suicide doors to allow easy access to the back are a winner.

Although I have only had it for 4 months, I have done 11000Kms as I drove from WA to melb. to pick up a caravan. It is a great tow vehicle.

I averaged 12.2litres/100Kms going over at 110Kms/hr (plus a few) and 14.5 on the way back towing a 1700Kg caravan. It has a solid Alum. canopy over the tray which increases the frontal area by about 200mm all around which probably pushed up the consumption somewhat.

AnswerID: 298544

Reply By: Steve - Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 21:16

Monday, Apr 14, 2008 at 21:16
Thanks to everyone for their replies. I have just read an article in a 4x4 mag which had the Nissan Navara as the best 4x4 ute, yet no-one has mentioned it in their replies. Any opinions on Navara ?

Thanks again.
AnswerID: 298546

Follow Up By: Leroy - Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 11:00

Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 11:00
Yeh I have an opinion, It's a Nissan and I will never buy another new Nissan. If you are not interested in any form of customer support buy a Navara.

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Follow Up By: Member - Olcoolone (S.A) - Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 21:23

Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 21:23
Take 4wd mags with a pinch of salt, i depends who spend the most money advertising wins.

It's fun when you read a story about one vehicle being fantastic and that it's the best and in 6 months time they say the same about another vehicle and the one that was so great 6 months ago is now at the bottom of the list.

They are all good vehicles and it does come down to what you like and what you could live with day in and day out.

Same as some people in the media and on this forum will can a vehicle they know very little about or when they had one 20 years ago the wheels feel off of it so the don't like it, the best one is when a new vehicle comes on the market straight away someone will hate it because it's to plush and that there is no way a plush vehicle could perform as well as my noisy, bad handling harsh ,un economical current vehicle.

Regards Richard
FollowupID: 564890

Reply By: Paul Grabonski. Vic - Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 08:17

Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 08:17
Traded the Hilux 3L on Mitsubishi Triton ML 3.2 6 months ago. Triton is fabulous on road and off road and towing kills all other utes and Patroooools and Land Comfy utes.

Navara rates 1/2 a star in Euro crash tests and is lethal vehicle if you read the crash reports. If Nissan fix up the air bags may make 2 stars but still lethal vehicle in a crash. Triton is 4 stars.
Seriously happy with the Triton 3.2 and would buy again.
AnswerID: 298613

Follow Up By: Member - Olcoolone (S.A) - Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 21:11

Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 21:11
The Hilux is a 4 star as well.

Regards Richard
FollowupID: 564885

Follow Up By: bms - Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 23:02

Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 23:02
The Hilux may well be 4 star but it defiantly needs to be as it has some questionable handling characteristics as can be seen in the video on the below link


Cut and paste it if it wont click through and have a gander.
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Reply By: str- Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 13:28

Tuesday, Apr 15, 2008 at 13:28
Bad crash report.. Thats the D40 Navara, couple of issues here or there. paint quality. A friend had no colour in the engine bay. Got it fixed tho. They can be a Tad thirsty from what i hear.
I like the fold up rear seat. allows you to use the rear floor instead of the seat. Check nissan navara.net if you have got time. It is uk but there a few aussies there.

I have a D22 3.0 and it has been great! All depends what you are after.... I needed a ute for around town, reno's, towing the trailer, put the dogs in the back. I don't get of road all that often but did a big trip to Fraser island. 2 small adults fitted ok in the back and we were loaded up to the canopy. Went everywhere over Fraser without a drama. pulled through the sand and got us upto waddy point fully loaded. performs ok for IFS off road.. maybe worth a look you didnt say new or old... new d22s have a 2.5td and Im not sure what they are like ut are cheaper and a tad smaller than the d40. Good luck with the search
AnswerID: 298667

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