86-95 Trucks & 4Runners 2nd/3rd gen pickups, and 1st/2nd gen 4Runners with IFS

3.0 or 22re questions (Newbie-please help)

Old 03-29-2016, 08:20 AM
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Question 3.0 or 22re questions (Newbie-please help)

I'm looking to get a 1st gen forerunner and am trying to decide between the 22re and 3.0 engines. I'd like to build this up as a daily driver / road tripper and not as a off-roader / rock crawler, so reliability is key. (I am also curious about the transmission reliability)

22re seems like it lasts forever but is under-powered, so is the 3.0 i suppose except that it has reliability issues with head gaskets? The only benefit I see from going with the 3.0 is that I could swap to a newer 3.4(and the 3.0's seem to sell for less, but this will cost $4-5K right?

Is there a clear winner here for what I want that I am overlooking? Thanks in advance for helping me out and answering my stupid questions.

OH, also.... I assume the IFS suspension is the way to go for me, or is the straight axle worth it if only for re-sale value later on?
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Old 03-29-2016, 09:38 AM
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Welcome to the forum.

The preferred model of 4Runner is the 85. It will have a better resale value because of the combo of EFI and solid axle.

That said, if you plan to own it for a while, plan to drive it on pavement 90% of the time, then 86-89s are easier to find at a good deal. There's almost always a decent deal by me on Atlanta Craigslist.

Be prepared to travel to get a good one if you live in a rust prone area of the country. One road trip will save countless hours repairing rot and replacing parts. Seriously.

I prefer the 22RE but either truck will be slow. I recommend this trick: keep tire size as small as you can stand it, and then increase your gear ratio to use the sweet spot of the engine's power band. Example: 31s (not 33s) with 4.88s will be a "quicker" combo.

If you're already considering engine swaps, and don't expect that to be a budget issue, then yes, the v6 will swap to 3.4 much easier. But the newer Taco 4cyls also swap into the older 4cyls so there's several upgrade options.

Primarily you are shopping for a truck that appears to have been maintained, vs trail beaten by idiots. Don't buy something that's been neglected, you'll be mad when you find things like jeep springs and perches welded in the wrong place.

There are complete trucks out there at good prices. Be patient and start with good foundation. Mine was pretty much rust free and i paid $3300. When the motor failed i didn't mind buying a new crate 22RE for it, and used 4.88s from a 94.

Don't go berserk about lift if you won't need it. There's a trend of over equipping because we want the best replacement parts as we fix things. But that's a slippery slope. If you commit to staying with 235s you won't need lift at all. Or with 31s, a simple 1" body block is enough to guarantee clearance and maintain proper drive line angles.

Money saved on lift is better spent on traction control, like a selectable locker or LSD. And those will get you farther than lift, especially if you prefer beach or trail driving vs technical crawling.

Build the truck you need, not what you fantasize about, and then recognize and respect the limitations of the vehicle. The reputation of the Hilux trucks is that they just keep going when things are broken. But It's not much more than that.

Good luck!
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Old 03-29-2016, 10:38 AM
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Red face

Transmissions a lot depends on your driving style and maintenance .

Anyone can neglect things and run them to they fail .

Fact of life Mechanical things sooner or later do wear out.

I do like the simple to work on 22re but for daily driving I am now spoiled by my 3.4 .

The part of the country you live in effects the price of things as well.
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Old 03-29-2016, 11:49 PM
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When I was younger, I wheeled IFS trucks pretty hard and they did great. Just have to know your limits. If you want hard core wheeling, then you may want a solid axle truck but from what you are saying, you really don't need the solid axle. Most people I think get caught up in the solid axle swap because of the cool factor and really not needing it in my opinion.

I have a solid axle truck but the reason I like it is because it is a little rarer then most of the other trucks out there. As far as resale value, I don't think a solid axle or IFS is going to play that much into it just because of the age of these trucks. Condition is going to be a bigger part in the resale value in my opinion.

For my kind of driving now, I would pay more for a well cared for IFS truck then a Solid Axle that has some abuse to it. I would keep my options open for both styles of trucks and not limited to just one or the other.

As far as motors, that debate will rage on. I prefer the 22r motor just because it is available in the trucks that I work on. Mostly 84-88 but from 79-94 it was used in all years and I have parts for them. Trying to keep parts for both motors just takes up to much space.

I have owned the 3.0 and liked its power over the 22 motor. One thing I will say for both the 22 or the 3.0 is with an automatic transmission behind either one, both trucks are a gutless wonder. I would do a transmission swap if I had one with the automatic transmission. Manual transmissions make these trucks so much more powerful.
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