Nissan Patrol??

Submitted: Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 12:29
ThreadID: 87125 Views:4551 Replies:7 FollowUps:8
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Please help advice from travellers.....Can anyone who owns a Nissan Patrol Turbo Diesel help us out, we are currently going to be travelling around Australia and are very confused on a tow vehicle, basically we have decided between a Nissan Patrol or a Toyota Landcuiser???

Can those that travel and tow with either of these please help us out with some advise - fuel economy towing power etc

We will be towing a Jayco 18ft Expanda Caravan...
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Reply By: Member - Joel and Michelle (WA - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 12:42

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 12:42
G'day Kime
Is it a 4.2 or 3.0 both will do the job, but both have completely different characteristics. You may also need to include the loaded weight of the van, man or auto, you can also chip the 3.0. I sold my 2004 3.0lt auto patrol for a 2006 TD auto Landcruiser because the auto only tows (legally ) 2.5 t. My van weighs around 3.2t.
AnswerID: 458145

Follow Up By: Kime - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 12:55

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 12:55
We dont know anything really about them thats why im asking....So does the manual patrol tow more weight?? auto/manual doesnt really matter but prob prefer manual....4.2 or 3.0 not sure??? do you know what is good about both??
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Follow Up By: Member - Joel and Michelle (WA - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 13:22

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 13:22
Auto / Manual can be very a personal preference. With a trailer camper or small caravan a manual is fine, but towing is easier ( this is for me, my skill level )with an auto. Red book shows the 2004 models td 3.0lt auto 2.5t and man 3.2t. The td 4.2lt man 3.5t. Imho the 100s Landcruiser is the better tow vehicle ( lots of power and torque ), but you definitely pay for this, especially with the 200s.
Have been towing this van around Oz for 13 months now and am very happy, But if the van weighed under 2.5t loaded would have stuck with the Patrol, economically speaking.
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Follow Up By: snoopyone - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 14:49

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 14:49
I did exactly the same as you and couldnt have been happier.

Incidentally my 100Td has just sold for nearly what I paid for it in 2007 and its done 90,000k since then
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Follow Up By: swainstm - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 14:52

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 14:52
For what it is worth, In the last 12 years I have owned both 3.0ltr and 4.2ltr Patrol (both TD manual), and 200 Series TD (auto as that is the only option). My usage was mainly as a day to day around town vehicle during the day, and holiday and weekend 4WD trips and outback touring. But majority of this I do without any sort of trailer or van, so I do not do a massive amount of towing around heavy loads on the back so bear that in mind with my comments bellow.

Basically irrespective of the religious arguments all have their advantages and disadvantages whichever way you go and I will try to summaries bellow first by my perception of differences between 3.0 and 4.2Lt Patrol and then Patrol vs LC 200 series. But it is important to remember this all comes down to what you are actually using it for, personal preferences and budgets. And basically in their own right I have been happy with all 3 as excellent 4wd for Australian conditions.

3.0 vs 4.2 Patrol differences :-
1. Put in its shortest description, 3.0Lt has more "power", but 4.2 has more torque (power is simply torque x revs so anything that can rev further can have advantage in the "power" stakes). ie 4.2 has more torque across the rev range, but 3.0 revs out higher, which gives it the peak power edge if you are prepared to keep it revving. This was true both in the spec sheet, but also was apparent in the driving (though there is way more torque with the 4.2 down low in the rev range than the 3.0s advantage at the top of the rev range). What this means is that the 4.2 is definitely much better are getting large loads going without significant clutch slipping, but 3.0lt might be marginally better at maintaining speed if you are prepared to keep it revving as you go up a hill. For my money, if you are towing loads, I would prefer the 4.2, because it just feels like it does it a bit easier, whereas you could not help feeling that the 3.0 was too small an engine for a bit load. Even for around town, I preferred the 4.2, because with it's long flat torque curve you did not have to constantly search for the exactly right gear to keep it going which was a factor in the 3.0.
2. 3.0lt was slightly better in the sand dunes (ie where you need need all the power that you can get), and slightly better overtaking on the highway, but apart from that I preferred the power delivery characteristics of the 4.2.
3. the 3.0lt does feel like a more refined engine (smoother and less of the diesel "rattle"), than the older generation and more truck like 4.2.
4. I am working from memory, but I think the towing capacity of the 4.2 manual was 3500kg vs 3200 for the 3.0lt. But I also think if you go auto, this drops dramatically, but I would check with specification from Nissan on this.

Overall, I think I would slightly prefer 4.2, and if doing lots of towing heavy loads this is a no brainer. But you just need to be patient when towing the larger loads and be prepare to slow down up the hills, and not have much grunt for overtaking even on the flat. If you are ok with all of this, then I think you will be very happy with the Patrol and have a very capable vehicle.

Now having said that, for me the primary reason for changing to the LC 200 from the Patrol was that I just wanted something with a little more grunt. Which leads me to the Patrol vs LC 200 comprision :-
1. in the bang for buck stakes the Patrol is a winner. Yes, I prefer the LC 200, but for the price, the patrol is all value.
2. But if you are prepared to pay the price, it is hard to argue that the LC 200 is not a superior vehicle. Yes there have been some issues (some oil usage especially up to around first 50K, some tail shaft clunk issues both of which I have personally had as with many other owners), but in general these issues have been mostly blown out of all proportion by people that don't own them, and I must say I have yet to speak to an overall unhappy LC200 (but they are out there, one of which has spent massive amount of time documenting his Landcruiser 200 series lemon).
3. if your criteria is being able to tow a huge load with ease, the LC 200 is the clear winning. The power and drivability of the TD 4.5 V8 is outstanding, and leaves either of the 2 Patrol TD for dead (if you have any doubt about this, just go and take a LC 200 and 3.0Lt Patrol for a test drive and tell me the difference).
4. shortest simple explanation I can give to compare the 2, is Patrol feels like driving a truck, and LC 200 is more like driving a car. The LC 200 is much more refined in almost every way.
5. Overall, in its standard specification, in either Patrol standard build, suspension and setup felt much tougher than and unbreakable in hard 4WD conditions than 200 series LC. 200 Series Landcruiser suspension felt a lot softer, and in danger of breaking things if hitting things 2 hard off road. But conversely LC is much better setup and comfortable road touring, and even on gravel roads in reasonable condition, the LC 200 is better option. However, some of the best money I have spent on LC 200 was after market suspension work to be better compromise between the 2, and now have vehicle much better suited to hash 4wd situations without too much trade-off to on road comfort.
6. LC 200 has much more "technology" which can give it an edge in places it can an edge in off road places it can reach, but in truth there is not much in this either way, and I could not help feeling some comfort with the Patrol, in that my perception was that there was way less to go wrong, and a bit easier to fix in the Patrol if it did.
7. LC 200 is only available in auto, which depending on your outlook (as it was for me) was a disadvantage. But having said that, while for off road, manual does have some advantages, my forced experience with Auto has taught me that auto does actually have some significant off road advantages, particularly where keeping momentum going is important (eg sand hills for 1, and on some hill climbs where you need some moment and speed changes). And the downsides of the auto can be managed.
8. if you are bush bashing, because the Patrol is marginally smaller, and much more common out there, you are going to get a few less scratches and scraps rather than being the first LC200 to bulldoze your way through the tight spaces.
9. I recon it might be easier to find spares and get things fixed on a Patrol than LC 200 when you are in a remote location.
10. Fuel economy is more about common sense and the way you drive, but in most situations I have seen (spent a reasonable amount of time on the same trip as people with Patrols and have compared figures), the manual patrol will get better fuel economy than my LC 200 (but that might also be the way I drive, and if you use the horses, you have to feed them). Suffice to say I have never got the 10.3 litre per 100 claimed in the specs, and in my vehicle at least you would have to drive very frugally to get this (though others have claimed they routinely get this). I have got a few refills at 13 lt/100k in the best conditions. But for outback touring full loaded with all the bits, roof racks loaded and lots of weight, and mostly pushing along is more like 18lt/100K. On soft sand and all of this, I suspect it is pushing up well towards 40Lt/100K but most vehicles would also blow out in these conditions.
11. LC 200 is much more comfortable vehicle to drive around in off road or on.

Anyway, this is just by 2 cents worth based on my personal preferences and usages, but I hope it is objective and useful for you.

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Follow Up By: Member - Bruce C (NSW) - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 17:00

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 17:00
Good reply Mathew, very informative.

Cheers, Bruce.
At home and at ease on a track that I know not and
restless and lost on a track that I know. HL.

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Reply By: Motherhen - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 13:38

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 13:38
Hi Kime

Our 2002 3 ltr Patrol is auto and generally towed our heavy van well, however 2.5 tonne is the maximum for the auto gearbox. The same motor in manual can tow to 3.2 t (or is it 3.5 t - someone may be able to correct me). Auto is ideal for towing. We chose to add EGT and Boost gauges to monitor and not stress the motor.

To be able to load up for long trips we had to change vehicles and now have plenty of power and weight allowance with a 7.3 ltr auto F250, but it does use a bit more fuel both when towing and when not towing.

Your van would be a lot lighter than ours so i expect either would be suitable.Check what the legal weight when loaded can be.


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Reply By: APN - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 14:22

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 14:22
Hi Kime

The TD 100 series should best be compared to the last of the Nissan 4.2TD - the 100 Series towing/not towing generally offers better fuel economy. Both motors are ideal tow units with a great torque curve delivering the low down power when you want it.

The TD 100 series has the IFS front end whilst the Nissan 4.2 has live axles providing much better wheel travel, which is useful in more serious 4WDing.

The Toyota generally has a better build quality - the Nissan has a more robust drive train.

If you are looking to buy a tow vehicle you will find that both of these vehicles with low km's are both very suitable and in manual variant should be able to tow your van with ease. If you are looking for a vehicle for more adventurous off road driving and can deal with a manual the Patrol, whilst not as sophisticated as the Toyota, nor as economical, will fit the bill. If the majority of the touring is tar/gravel roads, the TD 100 series is a good choice, though slightly more expensive than the Patrol. A used TD 200 series still present a sizeable investment, whilst the 3.0l Patrol is probably not suitable (for a variety of reason's, but for your indicated use, probably a little underpowered and has some history in respect of long term mechanical reliability).

I have had a 100 series and sold it for one o the last TD 4.2 Patrol's (whilst it is outdated technology when compared to newer large 4WD's, it has a wonderful motor and gearbox)

AnswerID: 458153

Follow Up By: AlbyNSW - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 14:52

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 14:52
Not wanting to steal the thread but as a touring vehicle between the Patrol and 100 series landcruiser which is nicer / more comfortable to travel with??
FollowupID: 731559

Follow Up By: Robin Miller - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 15:14

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 15:14
100 series most definately if its a 4.2lt Patrol
100 series if its a 3lt Patrol
Patrol if its the petrol 4800 version.
Robin Miller

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Follow Up By: AlbyNSW - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 18:04

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 18:04
Thanks for the reply Robin. I have noticed from other threads that you do love your Patrol
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Reply By: Member -Dodger - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 15:44

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 15:44
I have a 4.2td Patrol (you can't get them in auto) towing an 18ft Jayco freedom dual axle van with shower toilet and when heavily loaded goes 2 ton.
The Patrol tows it easily at around 90/95kph returning when both fully loaded 20ltr /100k. IE. Patrol 3100kg and van 2000kg total 5100kg or 5.1ton.
When loaded normally for travel it returns 18 ltr/100.
Patrol 300kg Van 1800kg total 4800kg or 4.8ton
This vehicle has had the turbo beefed up and the exhaust mandrel bent plus fuel pump boosted ....called Motson 3 stage upgrade...
As for hills, it is a little slow but will keep up with most of the other makes except the V8 breed.
I have had the vehicle for 11 years (its a 2000 model) and has completed 250,000k and apart from servicing has only had the plastic van replaced and the normal tyre and belt changes.
It has crossed every desert in OZ and towed a van round the block twice.


I used to have a handle on life, but it broke.

Cheers Dodg.

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AnswerID: 458160

Reply By: Member - Bruce C (NSW) - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 16:59

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 16:59
Hi Kime,

Go the landcruiser 100 series turbo diesel.

It will tow your outfit admirably and will accommodate an upgrade in van to a larger or heavier one than you currently have. (tow max 3.5 tonne limit)
Auto gearboxes are brilliant in this model as well.

The drive train will be plenty good enough for the black top and quite OK off road as well provided you do not want to go bush bashing.

It's got the motor everybody wishes they had.

I have heard of this motor being put into a patrol but never a patrol motor being put into a cruiser.

Get the lowest mileage vehicle you can and you will not be disappointed.

In fact I would suggest you will be over the moon with it.

Cheers, Bruce.
At home and at ease on a track that I know not and
restless and lost on a track that I know. HL.

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AnswerID: 458166

Reply By: westozal - Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 20:27

Wednesday, Jun 22, 2011 at 20:27
Hello Kime,

Lots of replies to your query. I have owneD a 4.2 diesel Maverick. a 2004 Man GU Patrol 3 ltr now a Isuzu Dmax Dual cab.

I really liked both the Maverick and the GU . Both got about same consumption
for me.

The reply by Matthew is very accurate in my opinion and if you have a big budget go the Toyota but frankly there are lots of 3 ltr Patrols towing caravans
quite happily around the countryside with no issues.

If you buy a Patrol go from 2004 onwards and should be fine.....but in the end I admit to being spooked by all the stories and tales of woe I have read and decided to buy the Dmax instead.
In my humble opinion I want to be confident of my car in the middle of nowhere and not be sweating over a non existent problem that my imagination has come up with.

How do you price peace of mind motoring ?

Reading this it seems I am bagging the Patrol ...but I actually liked mine other than off the mark take-off with low RPM. Never had any problems in its 110kms with me.

Have you considered a dual cab ute? Carry lots and you are spoiled for choice with every likelihood that any one of the major brand vehicles doing what you want.

Good luck with it.

cheers AL
AnswerID: 458190

Reply By: Patrol22 - Thursday, Jun 23, 2011 at 09:12

Thursday, Jun 23, 2011 at 09:12
I can't comment on either from a towing perspective but I will make one observation that might get you thinking more broadly than just the Patrol and Cruiser. I recently did a 20000km trip around and across Australia (D40 Navara auto - great car it is too) but on my trip I noticed that the bulk of tow vehicles for caravaners seemed to be either the Pajero or the Prado......can't comment on them either but given the number of them out there there are bound to be folks on this forum who can give you a heads up. I'm also under the impression that both of these are 3 tonne capable and more fuel efficient than the Patrol and Cruiser.
AnswerID: 458217

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