Advice: 2003 D/Cab 3.0D Hilux

Submitted: Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 13:25
ThreadID: 68352 Views:2812 Replies:5 FollowUps:1
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Hi guys,

Just looking into buying my first 4WD, ive been test driving a LN167R 2003 Hilux with about 105,000 on the clock.
It appears to be ex-minesite as its been given the black spray underneath. Despite this, the interior and engine are very clean and the current owner has had it for 3 years with no problems.

However i spoke to a mechanic friend who said that the 2003 3.0D engines were prone to failure, he mentioned something to do with a poorer quality steel being used in the construction. I'm not overly competent with engine mechanics so im sorry i cant explain what he was saying further.
However following on from this ive searched ExplorOz and the rest of the net thoroughly and cant find anyone complaining of a particular problem with the 2003 diesel engine.

So i was hoping the knowledgeable folk around here could tell me whether there is any truth behind this, and what you think a reasonable price for the vehicle would be. I can provide any pictures if needed.

Cheers in advance,
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Reply By: Member - Porl - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 14:09

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 14:09
Well my 2000 3.0D at 146,000km is going fine. I did a lot of researching and found no issues with this engine before I bought it about a year ago, other than poor power and torque specs, but that's all relative and I've been a lot of places in it and its never let me down or been found wanting for power or torque - i don't tow anything though, and there's a lot of black smoke going up very steep hills if i cane it.

I don't think the 2003 engine was different from the 2000.

They do have suspect front diffs, well 7.5" front diffs that i believe were changed back to 8" in 2004 cause they kept breaking when front ends came out of ditches at speed and upon landing on a hard surface with the front wheels with wheels spinning, bang.

Though of course if you don't go jumping out of ditches .... I don't so I don't think I've got anything to worry about.
AnswerID: 362253

Reply By: Member - Porl - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 14:13

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 14:13
and the mine site issue - well it depends which mine. Some mines mean an early death to the vehicle becuase of the minerals extracted corroding the chassis and engine parts, while some mines might not.

Pull back the rear seat and in each corner you will find a rubber grommet cover about the size of a 50c piece, pull it off and stick in your finger to see what's congealed in it and that's probably where its been.

I looked at some ex-mine utes and they were in terrible condition inside, flogged with broken pieces and heaps of rust under the seats etc.
AnswerID: 362254

Follow Up By: Member - Porl - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 15:30

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 15:30
All knowing "Ferrit" from the overlander sight i think would say that it is essential for these engines to get their 5,000 oil changes, miss those, particuarly in or around a mine, and the engine will deteriorate rapidly and break pieces.

After getting mine I did the CEM treatment just in case.
FollowupID: 630019

Reply By: Member - Howard T (QLD) - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 15:22

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 15:22
Hi Defari

My son has a 03 Hilux Dual Cab Diesel. He currently has 130k on it He uses it for 4wding etc. Hasnt missed a beat.


AnswerID: 362263

Reply By: Member - Scooby (WA) - Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 15:31

Wednesday, Apr 29, 2009 at 15:31
Hi Defari,
I have not heard of that before. My Hilux has done 210,000 and is running sweetly. I think it is very important to change oil and filter every 5000K, I use a good oil, Delo 400. Timing belt at 150000k, and while it is apart change tensioner, water pump and idler pulley. I did injectors at 100,000 and again at 200,000 they were OK at this mileage but changed them anyway. All I have done is replace front wheel bearings and one glowplug.
It is running gas which made a slight increase in power and fuel consumption reduced. Still underpowered and a pain on hills when loaded. Putting 31 inch tyres made the power worse.
AnswerID: 362265

Reply By: Member - Ingo57 (NSW) - Friday, May 01, 2009 at 13:27

Friday, May 01, 2009 at 13:27
G'day Defari

I had a 3 litre a few years ago, I found it very underpowered so I fitted an aftermarket turbo which improved the torque of the engine significantly. Wanting more power I asked the turbo specialist If it would be safe to boost it a few more PSI his answer was bluntly no the bottom end of these motors are weak as bleep !! They will be reliable with low boost but you will kill them quick smart If you go above the recommended settings.

As everyone has said above do your oil every 5000km, oil and filter every 10,000km. Everything mechanical has an achilles heel but that doesn't mean its not a good motor, had no mechanical probs with mine but I only racked up 90,000km before getting rid of it.

My 2 cents worth


AnswerID: 362595

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