Cape York. Is a mid-size 4wd suitable? Parts availability?

Submitted: Thursday, Oct 30, 2003 at 10:56
ThreadID: 8196 Views:7452 Replies:6 FollowUps:3
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Hi all. I need some opinions on a suitable 4wd for trips such as Cape York, as I am looking to buy one at the moment. As most of the year I am driving around town I was going to look at a mid-size 4wd, say a Prado or Jackaroo size vehicle (maybe even hilux dual cab).
Is this type of 4wd suitable for trips such as Cape York? I would prefer not to purchase a larger Cruiser or Patrol but are these going to be alot better for this type of trip?

Apart from the spares/equipment you are carrying, I would assume that in remote areas not many parts would be available and that you would need to get them sent in. More spares would be available for say a Land Cruiser but should that influence my decision on what type of vehicle to purchase.
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Reply By: Duke-Attie - Thursday, Oct 30, 2003 at 11:32

Thursday, Oct 30, 2003 at 11:32
Any if the 4x4's you have mentioned would be fine......... My choice would be diesel... I saw all types of 4x4's at Cape York this year including Suzuki Sierra's, Ford Explorers etc.... The trip to Cape York does not require a serious car it just requires a prepared vehicle which can cross rivers which are normally about thigh deep or under...
Not once did ground clearance play a major role...
As far as spares availability goes, if you buy a common car there should be heaps of spares.....
I followed a standard Pajero 2002model all the way along the OTL and it didnt even have a snorkel and it was fine but the water was down a bit this year...
I would always advise a snorkel for the water crossings......
AnswerID: 35685

Follow Up By: Troopster - Monday, Nov 03, 2003 at 19:16

Monday, Nov 03, 2003 at 19:16
Hi Duke-Attie
I am planning on going to the Cape this coming year, just wondering if you went out to the Skardon River or Pennefather River. If so was there heaps of crocs as we are taking kids and was the fishing any good.
FollowupID: 26029

Reply By: Tony - Thursday, Oct 30, 2003 at 11:39

Thursday, Oct 30, 2003 at 11:39
A Dual cab is a great vehicle for that sort of trip, but a Prado or Jackaroo would be fine as well.

As long as your vehicle is in top order and carry the basic spares (belts, hoses etc) any other part you may require due to break down can be flown in to most areas.

On a previous trip had a pair of engine mounts for a Hi lux flown in to Coen overnight, and got a swivell housing for the same vehicle from the wreakers in Mareeba.
AnswerID: 35687

Reply By: Member - Melissa - Thursday, Oct 30, 2003 at 11:44

Thursday, Oct 30, 2003 at 11:44
Absolutely!!! I did Cape York years ago in a SWB Pajero with no problems. We also owned a NH Pajero for several years which we used for touring extensively around the Top End and WA. Didn't do Cape York in that particular vehicle but wouldn't have hesitated.

:o) MelissaPetrol 4.5L GU Patrol &
Camprite TL8 offroad camper
AnswerID: 35689

Follow Up By: keepsmilin - Friday, Oct 31, 2003 at 21:09

Friday, Oct 31, 2003 at 21:09
hi melissa
did you have your trailer back then , if so how did it go. We are thinking of taking a trailer up there.
FollowupID: 25883

Follow Up By: Member - Melissa - Sunday, Nov 02, 2003 at 16:48

Sunday, Nov 02, 2003 at 16:48
No, we did Cape York before we owned a campertrailer. Knowing already what the conditions are and having great faith in our vehicle and trailer we wouldn't hesitate to tow our trailer up there. Not knowing your experience or set-up all I can say is if you have a good off-road trailer, a capable vehicle and confidence in your own experience and abilities go for it.

:o) MelissaPetrol 4.5L GU Patrol &
Camprite TL8 offroad camper
FollowupID: 25965

Reply By: Andrew - Thursday, Oct 30, 2003 at 12:24

Thursday, Oct 30, 2003 at 12:24
I have a 100s IFS Landcruiser and the shocks went on the front. They had none in Weipa at the joint I went to as they said that they only have one IFS Landcruiser in Weipa, and in Seisa they said that they had run out, Cairns had run out and they had to be flown from Brisbane. Took about four days as they were stuck in Cairns on Cairns Show Day. We saw heaps of midsize vehicles and Hiluxes doing the trip without any drama. The main drama is corrugations so as long as you drive sensibly you should have no problems.
AnswerID: 35696

Reply By: Cashy - Thursday, Oct 30, 2003 at 13:54

Thursday, Oct 30, 2003 at 13:54
I did the Cape in 2001 in a Prado with no problems. It had modified suspension and a snorkle and AT tyres on it. I would recommend a diesel just for the extra fuel range and economy. If the 4wd is regularly serviced by 4wd specialists and you advise them of where you are going they should be able to make sure any item that may fail is checled before hand. They may also be able to make up a spares pack for you for your vehicle. I would recommend the last model Prado over the new one as it has less clearance. It is also important to consider what accessories are available for the vehicle you are thinking of buying. The more popular models have more accessories avaliable and newer modles may have a delay in getting accessories as they haven't been released yet by the aftermarket makers.

AnswerID: 35702

Reply By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Thursday, Oct 30, 2003 at 18:23

Thursday, Oct 30, 2003 at 18:23
Wal we have taken most trucks on our trips and to date no major problems.As said above preperation is important get a good mechanic to get under it a rattle and shake most things and he/she will know what has to fixed. The only thing we find is that people take to much gear and most times say the will leave most of it behind next time.
All the best
4x4 tag alongs in the capeCape York Connections
AnswerID: 35728

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