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95.5-2004 Tacomas & 96-2002 4Runners 4th gen pickups and 3rd gen 4Runners

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Old 01-23-2013, 09:36 AM   #1
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Buying a 97 4runner 5speed for $5999

So there's a small dealership here in town that has a 5 speed 97 SR5 4runner with 204k miles. It's looks to be in pretty good condition from the outside, hadn't had a chance to drive it, and they are asking $5999 for it. Is this really worth it? Thanks for all the input in advance
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:41 AM   #2
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Bought my 97 5spd 3.4 elocker few years back with 193K at the time for $4000 private party. talk em down a bit from that. Look it up KKB for the market value in your area
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Old 01-23-2013, 05:13 PM   #3
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way too high.I bought a 97 4runner in 2007 with 139k for $5300,and i would think the kbb is gonna be around 2k or under,depending on condition.BTW mine is also a 5 psd and gonna hit 221k next week,no major work done to it and its been awesome since I got it,but the frame is rottin out and i dont know how much longer she is gonna last.Biggest thing i bought for her was a battery so far.
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Old 01-25-2013, 04:55 AM   #4
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Price seems really high to me. I paid $5000 for my 1998 with 95k, an automatic, e-locker, and 4.30 gears... Back in 2008.

I would hope the dealer would understand that 5-speeds are less desirable to the general population.

There is a good 3rd Gen Buying Guide that you may be interested in taking a look at:

http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-ge...ers-guide.html

Good luck!
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Old 01-25-2013, 06:17 AM   #5
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Old 01-25-2013, 09:20 AM   #6
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Offer $3500 cash.
3rd gens are so solid.
Just buy a salvaged one that had a minor fender bender, use all ur wisely saved cash on upgrades!
No stealerships for used taco/4runners.

Shoot, id be lucky to get $7k from mine with long travel, supercharger, and the rare 5speed..etcetc
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Old 01-28-2013, 07:38 PM   #7
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Thanks all. I went to go check it out last week, before we started it we talked and he dropped the price to 4950 out the door(taxes doc fees and smog check included). Then when we went to start it the battery was completely dead. He put a new battery in it and it started right up. The engine sounded great, but it did start to blow a bunch of white smoke from the tailpipe, and I saw it was leaking a bit of coolant, but couldn't figure out from where. Took it for a test drive and after about 10-15 mins of driving, the smoke stopped. Clutch felt nice, 4hi and 4lo worked great, all the windows rolled down. But I can't figure out the white smoke. I know for a fact that it had been sitting in the same spot for at least two months, so could this just be condensation that built up over the winter, or is it something more serious; head gasket, cracked heads, or cracked block. I'm supposed to go back tomorrow and check it out again but I don't want to commit if it like that. Again thanks for all the great advice.
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Old 01-29-2013, 01:17 PM   #8
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"head gasket, cracked heads"

A very real possibility. Did the white smoke smell sweet? Did the coolant in the radiator look oily?

You can put a JDM engine in for about 2k total if you do it yourself (1.3k for engine, 600 for TB kit and clutch kit and fluids).

You can also buy a kit that will test for combustion gases in the coolant for about $50 on amazon or just take the car to a shop and have them do a compression and leakdown test for just under $200.

White smoke in cold weather is normal until the exhaust pipes warm up. The coolant could be leaking from rusted rear heater lines.

I would locate the coolant leak and verify that the HG as suspect before walking away. With that said - I would use both as reasons to not pay a penny over 3500 for the truck...
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Old 01-29-2013, 01:37 PM   #9
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Pass and keep looking, and white smoke is NOT normal white exhaust steam is if its cold but smoke is not. Sounds to be a crap shoot to me and an overpriced one at that.
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Old 01-29-2013, 01:42 PM   #10
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Screw that lol. Way too much $$$. For a price like that i would expect everything to be solid on the truck with WAYYYY lower miles. Dude i bought my 1st gen 1989 4runner for 1500 with all kinds of problems. Ive since then rebuilt the enigine and did all kinds of other upgrades and im barely just over $6k. and this truck runs like a champ!


I would look around some more dude. I've seen 1st-3rd gen trucks with loads and loads of upgrades. Super clean. for 5k-7k on craigslist in the past. You just gotta look around some more. I can garuntee you will find a better deal. Dont be afraid to look a couple of major cities away. If the price is right it is worth the long drive.
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:32 PM   #11
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I bought a 97 4runner 5speed 4x4 with 196000 on it for 2300$ I had to put a new timing belt in and starter and that was about it
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:54 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mordgier View Post
"head gasket, cracked heads"

A very real possibility. Did the white smoke smell sweet? Did the coolant in the radiator look oily?

You can put a JDM engine in for about 2k total if you do it yourself (1.3k for engine, 600 for TB kit and clutch kit and fluids).

You can also buy a kit that will test for combustion gases in the coolant for about $50 on amazon or just take the car to a shop and have them do a compression and leakdown test for just under $200.

White smoke in cold weather is normal until the exhaust pipes warm up. The coolant could be leaking from rusted rear heater lines.

I would locate the coolant leak and verify that the HG as suspect before walking away. With that said - I would use both as reasons to not pay a penny over 3500 for the truck...


The smoke was not sweet smelling, it really didnt have a smell maybe unburnt gas. but is was really really thick and bright white. like after a seafoam treatment. then like i said after 15 min it stopped. checked the oil cap and dipstick and neither was milky or cloudy rad was hot so didn't check the coolant.
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:05 PM   #13
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Walk away. You have car fever. (Letting desire for car override common sense)

It leaks coolant. Had dead battery. Makings of a crappy car lot. A good car lot keeps all cars ready to go.

Go buy a used one from a individual. Like some old retired Engineer who keeps detailed records. Look at it at the sellers house. Is the garage neat and clean? Or is the guy got a dirt driveway and ˟˟˟˟ scattered everywhere?
Be a freaking detective before you let some mofo get your money.
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Old 01-30-2013, 04:19 PM   #14
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Thanks to all the members that posted their 2 cents. I ended up taking to a shop of my wife's friend, and turns out that the suspension was all shot. Break lines were cracked, front brakes were wearing unevenly, needed new rotors, calipers and complete rack and pinion system, and tires, although they had about 75% tread, were dry rotting from the inside. After all the parts and labor, the shop quoted me between $2,200 and $3,000. I took this back to the dealer who was selling the Runner and he was unwilling to drop the price, he still wanted $4,750 for it. I was willing to give him $3,300 he still refused. I ended up just walking away. I figure I'll just keep looking and hope to find a gem out there like so many of you have.
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Walk away. You have car fever. (Letting desire for car override common sense)
You were right HighLux, I think I just had really bad car fever.Click the image to open in full size. Again thanks for all the great input. This place is great
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Old 01-30-2013, 04:23 PM   #15
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No problem man! We are brothers in Toyota!!

Find that old record keeping engineer type guy. He posseses the Toyota
you need.

I assume you are still gonna get a Toyota?
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Old 01-30-2013, 04:24 PM   #16
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Quote:
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No problem man! We are brothers in Toyota!!

Find that old record keeping engineer type guy. He posseses the Toyota
you need.

I assume you are still gonna get a Toyota?

Sure am, just have to find the right one.
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Old 01-30-2013, 04:24 PM
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