Soon-to-be 100 Series owner...

Shay Marriott Jul 19, 2018

  1. Shay Marriott

    Shay Marriott New Member I am in great_britain

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    Hello knowledgable people...

    I've just posted an introduction in the usual place. Medium time lurker, finally signed up!

    After a recent stream of Audi/BMWs and getting my 4x4 fix from work trucks, I've decided to sell my 330d and look for a late 100 series to hopefully enjoy for many years. Current car will be going on the market next week once I've cleaned and photographed it. I'm ideally looking for a relatively low mileage (off the top of my head up to about 120,000 miles?) late ('05-'07) 4.2td Amazon with - very importantly - a good service record and reasonable MOT history without too many historical fails...

    I have a few questions to ask - any and all answers are much appreciated. Please forgive the essay...

    1. Before settling on a 100 Series, I was looking at 120/150 LC4s. Can anybody reassure me that a 100 Series is the way to go over a 'Prado'? Honestly, I probably don't NEED the extra size, weight, or towing capacity, but I also don't want the DPF, CR diesel problems, or the dubious aesthetics of the baby 'Cruiser. Also, my brain has told me I want a 100 Series so I'm trusting it...

    2. How reliable is a 100 Series likely to be? I'm not talking about the usual preventative maintenance, but realistically how often does a fairly well maintained cruiser give problems? A surprisingly high number of those that I've looked at online have had ARM bush and wheel bearing related MOT fails/advisories - is this normal? Having read many of the threads on here it's easy to think there are plenty of problems, but looking for car problems on forums is like diagnosing your medical problems on google...

    3. RUST!! Is it even possible to find one without this affliction? I don't mind a bit of light rust on the chassis (as per my Defender) but obviously don't want it to cause an untimely death. Don't mind getting a bit of welding done but the cynic in me wonders whether they are virtually all really bad?!

    4. What (roughly) should it cost? Apologies if this one has been done to death, but I couldn't find many recent threads on the subject and I don't know whether online adverts are somewhat ambitious price-wise... What would it be sensible to pay for, say, an approx. 100k mile, 2006, diesel, FSH, tidy 100 Series?

    5. Any specific things to look for when viewing? It's easy to get drawn in by a nice shiny potential new toy, but pragmatism needs to come first and it would be useful to have a short list of vital things to check before going and viewing. Anywhere that is a giveaway on the rust situation? How to check whether the AHC works properly? How does one check the A/C isn't about to give up the ghost?

    Thank you for getting this far.

    Obviously I'm looking at 12-14 year old vehicles and there are going to be little problems and the odd ding/dent. I've already made peace with the fact that at some point I'll be visiting Pleiades (if they're still going) or change to a Pedder's/Ironman set-up when the AHC goes, but I'm hoping other than tyres and preventative maintenance the car should give me a fair few years of service.

    Any replies are much appreciated, and I promise my future posts on the forum will be much shorter.

    Thanks!

    Shay.
     
  2. Ian Rubie

    Ian Rubie Moderator I am in uk

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    Hi Shay,

    Welcome.

    As to which model it is very much down to personal preference. For me a 100 beats a 120 \ 150 hands down, other people have completely the opposite opinion. If the fact a 100 is bigger and you don't mind the increased fuel consumption of the 4.2 then I'm sure you will be happy with the 100.

    You sound like you have a good grasp on it already. The year range you have specified will be the 5 speed, as you no doubt know, so that is a big plus. As you have highlighted the big problem is rust. Check the usual areas, wheel arches and chassis.

    A well maintained 100 will be a reliable vehicle. I keep banging on about it but AHC is a great system and is reliable if it is maintained. Maintenance is straightforward but seldom done. All you need to do is flush the fluid every couple of years and, using TechStream, keep an eye on the pressures. Look up graduation test for a simple AHC health check. It is not the be all and end all but is a reasonable guide. Another simple check, does it go up and down - all the doors need to be closed. During the test drive check you can feel a difference between comfort and sport suspension settings. You should be able to feel this over bumps and during cornering.

    The weak point with the aircon is the pipes that go to the rear unit. These corrode and let the gas out. The same gas does both front and rear. Several companies can replace the pipes with flexible ones which is much easier than rigid ones. You can also bypass the rear unit if you prefer that option. The pipes run along the drivers side of the chassis if you want to check them.

    Good luck with your search, good cars are out there.

    Ian
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2018
  3. AndycruiserguyLomas

    AndycruiserguyLomas Well-Known Member I am in england

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    Couldn't have said it better myself. My 100 has done 200K and runs like a Swiss watch. Take someone with you that owns one and has worked on their own truck if possible.
     
    Alrightchief likes this.
  4. uHu

    uHu Well-Known Member Supporter I am in norway

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    1. Before settling on a 100 Series, I was looking at 120/150 LC4s. Can anybody reassure me that a 100 Series is the way to go over a 'Prado'?
    Absolutely. The 100 is a real cruiser. Otoh, if you stay away, there will be more good ones for the rest of us :D

    2. How reliable is a 100 Series likely to be? .... have had ARM bush and wheel bearing related MOT fails/advisories - is this normal? ...
    The 100 is (maybe the last) field serviceable. Most things can be fixed on the road side. Only the rear wheel bearings are a bit tough, but they should last 500 k km.
    Wheel bearings and Stab.bar bushings and links MOT fails are because of lacking PM. The bearings last as long as the rest of the car, as long as they are adjusted and repacked regularly. If you leave that service to a dealer, they will just skip it and sell you a new bearing when the old one is burnt out. They make more money that way. (The same goes for the UJs, btw. They need grease twice as often as the engine needs oil). The Stabilizer bar bushings and links have a hard life, and have to be checked and changed regularly. But they do last many years, normally.
    Edit: But, they are very reliable. If maintained properly, you are unlikely to ever need any roadside repair. Electronics, electric parts and plugs seem to be bulletproof.

    3. RUST!! Is it even possible to find one without this affliction? I don't mind a bit of light rust on the chassis (as per my Defender) but obviously don't want it to cause an untimely death. Don't mind getting a bit of welding done but the cynic in me wonders whether they are virtually all really bad?!
    Body rust is your worst enemy.

    4. What (roughly) should it cost? Apologies if this one has been done to death, but I couldn't find many recent threads on the subject and I don't know whether online adverts are somewhat ambitious price-wise... What would it be sensible to pay for, say, an approx. 100k mile, 2006, diesel, FSH, tidy 100 Series?
    A lot.

    ....and I promise my future posts on the forum will be much shorter.
    That's a pity.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2018
  5. Higgy

    Higgy Well-Known Member Supporter I am in denmark

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    Hi Shay.. I think all the previous posts say it all.. Iv been looking to upgrade my Colorado for a while now and I know how difficult it is to find the perfect truck, to be fair I don't think one exists, iv been looking at the 100 and the LC 3/4/5 they are all good trucks but all seem to have the same issues when it comes to rust.. it all depends on your budget. like most things if you can spend the money you will get a good one. Just keep looking and buy with your head and not your heart.. myself and a few members on here im sure have been bitten on the arse by impulsive finger twitching on ebay..:) good luck anyways
     
  6. AndycruiserguyLomas

    AndycruiserguyLomas Well-Known Member I am in england

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    Usual rules apply when buying a S/H anything.
    A
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    They don't all have rust issues but finding either a 100 or 120 without rust will take patience. I've had most models of Cruiser in my time and still have my 100 but don't use it as the 120 does everything I need without quite the bulk. I suppose one has to ask the question " do I need nearly the biggest 4x4 on the road?"
     
  7. Towpack

    Towpack Well-Known Member Supporter I am in england

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    Don't discount the V8 petrol version. Certainly a bit thirstier but a really superb drive.:romance-adore:
     
    uHu likes this.
  8. uHu

    uHu Well-Known Member Supporter I am in norway

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    I have to air my disagreement: The LC100 is not big. The fact that some small people have made some smaller cars doesn't make the Land Cruiser big. And it's far from being a Unimog or a Man truck.
     
  9. Higgy

    Higgy Well-Known Member Supporter I am in denmark

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    The 100 series is big. and in the UK a Unimog or a MAN truck isn't your every day 4x4.
     
  10. Shay Marriott

    Shay Marriott New Member I am in great_britain

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    These are some great replies, thanks a lot everyone.

    Some responses to a few points raised... and I was wrong. This post isn't shorter at all.

    As far as the comparison to a 120/150 goes, obviously I've asked on a 100 Series forum so am going to get an inevitably biased response - but I've spent so long reading reviews/forums/on youtube/thinking, that I'm happy I came to the 100 Series conclusion independently. When I was looking for my two most recent cars, an A4 3.0 TDi Quattro and the current 330d, I spent ages and ages trying to find the EXACT right spec. There was though, in the end, nothing perfect and in the end, the compromises I ended up with were quickly forgotten.

    I'm not too concerned about fuel consumption. I use the company truck (and therefore free fuel) about 50% of the time, and I commute on my motorbike quite often to beat Bristol's abysmal traffic problems. The truck I end up with is most likely to get driven about 8-10k miles per year, which will mainly be on weekends and therefore on longish drives. I do prefer the torque of a diesel to the power delivery of a petrol so I'm pretty sure I want the 1HD-FTE as opposed to the V8 petrol.

    Sorry uHu - I'm going to be spreading the LC market a little bit thinner...

    Some good advice on the places to check when looking at a potential purchase, particularly the AHC, A/C and rust. I looked up the ACH graduation test - I suspect it will make more sense when I can actually get underneath one. I think I'm right in saying that the 'shocks' aren't shocks in the conventional sense, but remote reservoir hydraulic systems, intrinsically linked to the AHC? If there is no discernible change to the ride between the sports/comfort settings is this likely to indicate a more complex problem that just swapping out 'normal' shocks in a regular car? I have had adaptive suspension on the last couple of cars so I think I'm OK with seeing its effectiveness.

    I'll probably end up viewing a fair few before I find one clean enough, but I suppose that £500-odd spent on viewing a bunch of land cruisers is better than a £1000 bill early on for something I should have rejected a purchase based on! I'd assumed (I guess wrongly) that chassis/axle/diff rust would be the killer - I'll be sure to check the body work carefully. I've seen a few threads talking about tailgate rust - where is this easiest to check?

    An interesting point raised and discussed re: the size. It will be a little longer than the Hilux I've been driving, and slightly shorter than the L200. The work pick-ups have a Truckman high top cover on the load bed so I'm not concerned about the height either. I've got very used to the size of those vehicles so I suppose the width is the main difference - although I've never had a problem with the size of LWB high-top Transits,so really I'm not too concerned. Parking sensors will, I'd imagine, be fairly important... I learned to drive in the countryside on single track lanes so am an adept reverser, hopefully I'm far enough removed from the demographic who struggle with large vehicles on small roads (I hate to point the finger at school-run parents in Range Rovers, but that is exactly where I'm pointing).

    Today I spoke to a garage a couple of hours drive away about a clean looking one on their website that they have annoyingly just sold; however I'm told they should have a 56 Plate "1 family owner" car with less than 90k on the clock due in a couple of weeks so I'm hopefully going to take a look at that when it's in... estimated that it'll be up for about £22-23k so a bit over budget but seems to be in the right sort of ballpark for value if it's in good condition... the more I know to check for the more potential I've got to haggle the price down... I hope! I'm intending to keep whatever I end up with for a long time, but it looks like the prices have somewhat stagnated over the last couple of years, so I'm hoping that depreciation is minimal compared to the German saloon cars I'm used to losing money on!

    Someone I know has had a fair few 80s/100s and I think has done a fair bit of West Africa overlanding in them so next time I'm back up at my parents I'm going to call in and see what he's got at the moment.

    Keep the comments coming everyone - very useful for me and hopefully others in a similar position.

    Cheers!

    Shay.
     
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  11. uHu

    uHu Well-Known Member Supporter I am in norway

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    Tailgate rust, check around the lock/opening handle under the liftgate. Tailgate rust is not that bad tho' as the tailgate can be changed. Check around the rear wheels and the rear corners. Also under the floor above the spare wheel, and inside the rear bumper.

    Don't overthink the AHC issues. Problems can be fixed, especially if you do the wrenching yourself. And in the worst case: All suspension parts have to be changed sooner or later; and if you put in conventional parts, it doesn't make it more expensive if there are ahc parts fitted originally.
    For maintaining the ahc: The "shocks" seem to last until they rust to pieces, longer than conventional shocks. The height sensors wear out, and can give a couple of variations of funny symptoms. The globes (gas springs) wear out. Other parts that can fail are the sensor links and the cables near the sensors (if exposed to salt). It's important to have a MOBD code reader (e.g. TechStream) and keep tabs on the neutral pressure, sensor heights and steering angle.
    Edit: Also the rear springs (coils) seem to have a very limited life span, but that goes for all cruisers, ahc or not; but with ahc, that translates into a too high rear neutral pressure (which often goes undetected).
     
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  12. Shay Marriott

    Shay Marriott New Member I am in great_britain

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    Well I have just got home with my LC! Gunmetal grey, 55 plate, 136,000 miles, and just about everything still working. Drove it back up from Devon to Bristol and got a computer reading of 29.9mpg over the journey. Very comfortable and quite happy to sit at 75/80 - surprising turn of speed when you put your foot down! No black smoke and engine purrs nicely. Decent service history.

    Only downsides are that the spare wheel lowering device was seized up and as I got them to put BFG KO2s on it the spare is currently in the boot having had to be cut off. Fortunately the chap I bought it from is happy to pay to have a new one put on. Any ideas where’s the best/cheapest place to source a replacement?

    It’s got a little corrosion underneath but nothing terrible, so I’ll book it in for a dinitrol treatment soon.

    Steering wheel motors are fairly shot but it’s in the perfect place for me and nobody else will be driving it so I’m not worried. Seat motors work fine.

    Really pleased - I’ll get some photos of it up in the next few days. Thanks for all the earlier advice everyone!
     
  13. uHu

    uHu Well-Known Member Supporter I am in norway

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    Pics - or it didn't happen :)
    That sounds like a nearly new, unused LC100. It's a HDJ I presume?
    That UK half-year numbering system is a pain, but I found that it means "registered between may and sept in 2005".
    Next time you need to take down a stuck spare wheel, just undo the four bolts holding the crossmember (not structural). Then you can take down the whole caboodle and service the winch.
    If there is some action left in the steering wheel motors, you can disable the automatic function (which is what wear them out), using techstream, and have the possibility to adjust the position when needed.
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2018
  14. Jacob100

    Jacob100 Well-Known Member Supporter I am in uk

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    Congratulations on your purchase. I’m sure you will be very happy with it. They are sensational cars.

    Instead of using Dinitrol, lots of people on here including myself have taken our Cruisers to Robert at Krown rustproofers near Dudley. He’s an absolute pro and great to deal with. The attention to detail is staggering. If you mention the Land Cruiser Club he’s likely to knock some money off the bill.
     
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  15. uHu

    uHu Well-Known Member Supporter I am in norway

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    Yes, listen to Jacob.
    Krown or Fluid Film, but it depends a lot on who's doing it.
     
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  16. CountryBoy136

    CountryBoy136 Active Member Supporter I am in south_africa

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    Congratulations Shay, have to say I don't believe this is a purchase you will ever regret... Defenders and old LC's are the two vehicles that other roadusers don't seem to be threatened by or aggressive about... happily let you in where a Beemer or Rangie would be shut out... and besides, they're not THAT big but still just big enough that the wife is far enough away from you to not be able to hear or reach you!!! lol

    And as for parking sensors, they maybe convenient for unfamiliar owners but not really essential as the 100 is so fabulously square it't really super easy to drive and park, you always know exactly where the corners and edges are so much easier to judge than many much smaller cars out there... and when if doubt v easy to open the door, lean out and look back to see where you are.. either that or a reversing camera is a very simple install, AND has the added value of being useful for reversing towbar to a trailer coupling...

    Personally, I thought a while about keeping the AHC on mine which needed new sensors and overhauling, but ultimately decided for the money it would be better, and more reliable, to ditch it completely and replace with IronMan coils & shocks all round... but take your time, and enjoy Cruising... welcome to the dark side!! lol
     
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