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Need opinions on ski vehicle choices, thank you :) - Page 8

post #211 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by tanscrazydaisy View Post

Studdable and Studless Snow/Ice do handle worse in the summer.  General Altimax Arctic are very squimy... in the spring or late fall.  Ironically, though when I had Nokian Hakkapeliitta RSI, those tires handled better in the spring than the Pirelli P6 4-seasons that came stock on my car.

 

Performance Winters, the difference is negligible.  THe H or V rating means harder rubber than the Studdable & Studless.

 

You can use "winter tires" year-round... there are all-season tires out there, that have the Mountain-Snowflake on them.  Choices are extremely limited though.  For example, you have the NokianWR G2 & WR G2 SUV and WR G3

 

I don't think the OP needs snow tires living in SD.   Most folks in Denver who only ski a couple days a year don't need them either.  But, you need to be VERY CAREFUL which all season tires you pick.  Some are pretty good in the snow and many really suck.  The really good ones have the Mountain-Snowflake as tanscrazy suggest, and there are several likely available for the OP's 4WD.

 

Someone who lives in Denver or similar and doesn't ski too much might consider running high performance snows year round like the CSP, again like tanscrazy suggested.   If you ski a lot, you need four snow tires even with 4x4, IMO.   If you can afford a dedicated snow vehicle, make it four studded snows.   

 

I'd bet at least half the vehicles in the 70 car pileup on Vail pass were 4x4 with all seasons given typical traffic on I-70 in a storm.

post #212 of 232

So we are back to a bunch of people saying that 2WD/snows perform superior to AWD/all seasons because AWD only changes the equation under power and does nothing for cornering and braking performance.  Which is a generally accurate statement.

 

But so what? Driving 2WD cars, with snows or otherwise, the common thing that would do them in is reaching the point where the snow is just too deep, or the road too steep to keep the car moving forward. Snows help here, but having another set of driving wheels still blows 2WD and snows out of the frozen water here in the real world.

 

Driving up the snowiest pass, and one of the nastiest passes in Colorado (Wolf Creek) all ski season in my Forester XT, where most drives the road was at least snowpacked, and in about ten drives was whiteout, 6" deep, snow piles on ice, etc., my traction/stability control went off momentarily a grand total of 3 times the whole year, each time in situations that were still completely driver correctable. So basically, I exceeded the traction limits of fresh all seasons (Uniroyal Tiger Paw) 3 times.

 

Ok, call it 6 times if you include times I went for power-oversteer around the hairpins and forgot to switch the damned thing off ;).

 

I'm not discounting that snows offer better traction, and just because I only hit the traction limit a handful of times, that doesn't mean its nice to have the additional envelope when you need it. But, if you are looking to make one investment to ensure that you get to the ski area every time the road is open, the obvious answer is AWD over snows.

 

Finally, while I'm not the "I got me some EH DUBYA DEEE, so I can go 90 MPH on glare ice" guy, I'm not exactly coming home at 5 mph either.

post #213 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by anachronism View Post

Ok, call it 6 times if you include times I went for power-oversteer around the hairpins and forgot to switch the damned thing off ;).

That is crazy scary. I turn off my traction control any time i'm not highway driving and not on pavement. Almost got thrown off a trail because i forgot to turn it off.

post #214 of 232
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by AustinFromSA View Post

Welcome to EpicSki, D. Where any question about vehicles ends up in an inevitable debate on tires, where a question about skis ends up in a debate about technique, and so on. biggrin.gif

 

 

Thanks. And, noted! :D

post #215 of 232

      Quote:

Originally Posted by Bodie Klammer

 

SNow tires are a little worse than all seasons in the summer or anytime on dry pavement, and WAY better on ice and snow. How is that not true? All seasons exist for people who are content with mediocre performance all the time.

 

 

 

Mediocre performance from all seasons? I drive to work, to the food store, to my kids games. The roads are way crowded and riddled with potholes were I live. My limits are well served.  There is no place to explore the handling limits of my Audi on its "mediocre" Conti tires. If I tracked the car I would use the appropriate tires, just like I do now for my everyday driving. You are disregarding the most important factor in tires and AWD - the driver.

 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bode Klammer View Post

Originally Posted by Bodie Klammer

SNow tires are a little worse than all seasons in the summer or anytime on dry pavement, and WAY better on ice and snow. How is that not true? All seasons exist for people who are content with mediocre performance all the time.

 

 

The fastest route from LI to Mad River Glen is Taconic Parkway and Appalachian Gap.  Do you really want to do that without snow tires?   Do you really think it's smart to roll around in a $40,000 car and not spend another $600 on proper tires? 

 

BK

How have I managed to survive without snow tires on my audis? 25 years of zero problems confirms my decision. By the way I have been over the Gap and much worse in my Audis.

 

I do know the value of snow tires. As I said I put them on my FWD car.

post #216 of 232
Thread Starter 

Just checked back to see if you guys were still arguing about tires. :D

 

 

 

Update: nothing purchased yet.

 

 

 



I'm selling my built Mustang, and soon as that goes, I'm going after a Land Cruiser or LX. Been watching the marketplace for the past few weeks, and all things considered, seems like a great solution over all, and I've always wanted one.

 

Gas mileage will be poor, but I don't drive much, so I'm not too worried. 

post #217 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Super D View Post

Just checked back to see if you guys were still arguing about tires.

No we are arguing about whether or not REI is evil like Walmart. Tire arguments will start again in September.

Good call on the Cruiser, it really is a no-brainer.
post #218 of 232

Find it hard to believe no one has mentioned the Nissan Xterra.

 

It's going to be hard to get one that's both low miles and under $15k, but, unlike the listed options, not impossible. Mechanically, they're pretty bulletproof, have 4 doors, good factory ground clearance and are not complete gas pigs.

 

Here's one in SoCal on Autotrader with 59K miles for just under $11k. I'd say that hits the sweet spot. (Link is here.)

 

post #219 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Super D View Post
 I'm going after a Land Cruiser or LX. Been watching the marketplace for the past few weeks, and all things considered, seems like a great solution over all, and I've always wanted one.

 

Solid choice. I considered one when shopping around, because as I learned, they both seem to devalue far quicker than both 4Runners or any given Subaru. Plus, they're WAAAAY nicer. You get some good off-roadability in them, too.

 

Shopping around, you should be able to find yourself a good bargain, again, unlike 4Runners or Subarus. Relative to their original value, at least. 20 grand for a beat up, base model Subaru with a gazillion miles? I know they're great and all, but no thanks. I'd much rather have a pimped out LX for the same money. As much as I hate SUVs, the Land Cruisers and LX's are clearly a better value in the used car dept, especially for a Toyota product, which normally maintain their value much more so than these particular models.

post #220 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by mallthus View Post

Find it hard to believe no one has mentioned the Nissan Xterra.

It's going to be hard to get one that's both low miles and under $15k, but, unlike the listed options, not impossible. Mechanically, they're pretty bulletproof, have 4 doors, good factory ground clearance and are not complete gas pigs.

Here's one in SoCal on Autotrader with 59K miles for just under $11k. I'd say that hits the sweet spot. (Link is [URL=http://www.autotrader.com/cars-for-sale/vehicledetails.xhtml?endYear=2014&zip=90807&driveCodes=4WD|AWD&sellerTypes=b&showcaseListingId=341007129&mmt=[NISSAN[XTERRA[]][]]&modelCode1=XTERRA&driveCode=4WD|AWD&sortBy=derivedpriceASC&showcaseOwnerId=563991&makeCode1=NISSAN&startYear=1981&maxMileage=75000&numRecords=100&searchRadius=100&listingId=345932807&listingIndex=16&Log=0]here[/URL].)



Xterra was mentioned somewhere around post 155 biggrin.gif
post #221 of 232
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by NayBreak View Post


No we are arguing about whether or not REI is evil like Walmart. Tire arguments will start again in September.

Good call on the Cruiser, it really is a no-brainer.

 

REI is not evil like WalMart...they don't sell everything made outside the US marketed by brands which were once domestic and supported local jobs....oh, wait.... :p

post #222 of 232
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mallthus View Post

Find it hard to believe no one has mentioned the Nissan Xterra.

 

It's going to be hard to get one that's both low miles and under $15k, but, unlike the listed options, not impossible. Mechanically, they're pretty bulletproof, have 4 doors, good factory ground clearance and are not complete gas pigs.

 

Here's one in SoCal on Autotrader with 59K miles for just under $11k. I'd say that hits the sweet spot. (Link is here.)

 

 

Too small to be a family + gear vehicle, but thank you.

 

And I'm seeing early 2000's Land Cruisers for low teens to close to 10 grand, so it's hard to beat that for what you get.

In any case, I'd only get an Xterra if it was yellow and came with full-time baywatch babes from the '90s (back in time, not how they are now). I may have to get this pre-approved by my wife, but if the situation arises, this could work..

post #223 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by Super D View Post

 

Too small to be a family + gear vehicle, but thank you.

 

And I'm seeing early 2000's Land Cruisers for low teens to close to 10 grand, so it's hard to beat that for what you get.

In any case, I'd only get an Xterra if it was yellow and came with full-time baywatch babes from the '90s (back in time, not how they are now). I may have to get this pre-approved by my wife, but if the situation arises, this could work..

 

That's cool. It's just that a current generation Xterra has more interior space than some of the other vehicles on your list, so I thought I'd throw it out there.

 

Vehicle

EPA Interior Volume (in cu. ft.)
Audi Allroad  99.3
Audi Q5 101.5
Audi Q7 133
Nissan Xterra 99.8
Porsche Cayenne 97
Toyota FJ Cruiser 71
VW Touareg 99

 

I'd also be really sure that you're up for the repairs on an early 2000s Land Cruiser.

 

These are good sites (yes, I've considered going down this road and turned back once I knew what I was getting into).

 

http://www.sleeoffroad.com/newbie/newbieUZJ100.htm

post #224 of 232
^^^^Don't get too excited about 'repairs'. Enthusiast Land Cruiser owners are OCD. They send their oil to be analyzed for metal composition wear analysis to determine engine oil change intervals and longevity. I am not kidding - and Slee caters to this crowd (very professionally, mind you). I'm surprised the LC isn't the official vehicle of EpicSki biggrin.gif.

Having said this, my advice early in this thread was to buy from an enthusiast and buy for up to date maintenance over mileage. 30K miles means nothing compared to a fully baselined truck. You buy one of those and you won't have to touch it over a 2-3 year ownership period.
Edited by NayBreak - 5/16/13 at 9:45pm
post #225 of 232
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mallthus View Post

 

That's cool. It's just that a current generation Xterra has more interior space than some of the other vehicles on your list, so I thought I'd throw it out there.

 

Vehicle

EPA Interior Volume (in cu. ft.)
Audi Allroad  99.3
Audi Q5 101.5
Audi Q7 133
Nissan Xterra 99.8
Porsche Cayenne 97
Toyota FJ Cruiser 71
VW Touareg 99

 

I'd also be really sure that you're up for the repairs on an early 2000s Land Cruiser.

 

These are good sites (yes, I've considered going down this road and turned back once I knew what I was getting into).

 

http://www.sleeoffroad.com/newbie/newbieUZJ100.htm

 

 

Thank you, appreciate it, just going to get a LC and I've eliminated the other candidates already.

post #226 of 232

I bought our fourth LC last fall, after about a six month search. I wanted a one owner, private sale, rust free, 2003 without Navigation, with very thorough maintenance records, and I wanted just one color. I found one, and drove it back east 2500 miles. Before flying picking it up, it spent a week with LC guru Christo Slee in Golden, CO being thoroughly baselined, including a new timing belt, water pump, etc. I bought it with 88K miles, and factored all of that into the price. I did not get a great deal. I got a very fair price. I had it inspected pre-sale. 

 

I would worry MUCH less about mileage than about a good maintenance history. These vehicles are really unusual. They were built to have a service life, depending on who you listen to, of at least 350K miles. Some say 500K. Between my brother and I we have four currently in service in our families. The oldest is a 1994 80 with 400K on the odometer. It looks almost new. Uses no oil. My brother also has a 2005, with 40K. It really is better than new.  The one that I replaced unfortunately had rust issues that got ahead of me, and started with a faulty windshield replacement. I bought that one in 2002, off a two year lease, with 32K miles, for $40K. I drove it for 220K more miles, over 10 years, and sold it the first day for $8K. In the course of that ownership, there were remarkably few surprises. I replaced shocks, brake rotors and pads, tires, and did all of the recommended maintenance. Had the original exhaust on it, the original brake calipers, starter, alternator, etc. That car drove across the country and back five times. I would have driven it again, the day I sold it. My experience has been that each of our trucks has had one issue that popped up between 100K and 200K miles.....maybe in the $500-1000 range. But that's it. 

 

In looking for one of these, do not get hung up on a 125K mile LC versus an 80K mile one. Makes absolutely no difference. Look for one that has had a knowledgeable owner who has taken care of it. You could buy one new, and drive it, with literally NO maintenance for 75K miles, so I get very suspect of the ones that I see bought and traded at auction, then sold at used car shops, etc. If an owner has had it dealer serviced, all of those records are available on line. Most LC owners leave the dealer right after their warranty is up, if not sooner. If you're mechanical, a lot of the regular maintenance is easy, and for that group it becomes even more frequent. For example, I drain and fill my differentials, and trans every 15K miles, as it's very easy. 

 

We use dedicated snows in the winter on our two, and I have separate rims for them, but many run the same tires year round. I have owned just about every AWD "sport wagon" built over the past 25 years, and two years ago we decided to go with two LC's. I put more maintenance into BOTH of the S6 Avants that we owned than what I paid for my most recent LC. I have owned Volvo's, BMW's, a Passat W8 wagon, and yes three Subies, including an LGT. The LC's are big {6000 lbs plus} and they drink a lot of fuel. In that respect, not so green. Otherwise, they work for us. I should say that we have a third car that's more of a summer fun car when we just don't feel like driving a "truck". 

 

I am also partial to to the Toyota badged vehicle, rather than a Lexus. I passed on a number of LX470's before finding our latest 100. I just like the way the Toyota is set up. 

 

ih8mud is a tremendous resource. Very common for those who post to fly anywhere in the country to buy a car. The ones that I considered seriously were in Seattle, Phoenix, Atlanta, and the one I bought which was in Denver having moved there form Santa Fe two years before. You MUST avoid a rust belt car if you plan on keeping it. I had Ih8mud people willing to go look at all of those cars, and recommending local LC shops to inspect them. You can also do a pre-purchase inspection at any dealer for about $100.

 

I also understand those who just can't imagine owning a vehicle that big. What most people miss is that the cost of ownership when you buy used can be very low, over a long life. I owned a Subie LGT wagon for about six years and 120K miles, and the maintenance cost was three or four times what it was on an LC for the same mileage. Not to mention that if you buy the LC at a fair price, and take care of it,you can drive it for years and sell it at a fair price. $22-25K will buy a very nice LC that you could drive for well over another 100K miles, and they sell for over $10K. The market for older ones is very strong.

 

They are big, incredibly comfortable, and on the highway in particular great. I've driven them 1200 miles at a stretch without feeling beat up, and I'm not a kid.  

 

Good luck. Clearly think it's a great choice.  PM me if I can be of help. 

post #227 of 232

^^ What is your take on the 200 series? My 100 has only 140K, so I don't plan on needing another any time soon, just curious.

post #228 of 232
The 200 is still a Land Cruiser, so if you like the way it looks (Highlander on steroids)...I don't think I've seen much if anything that suggests the underpinnings are somehow diminished. It still has a solid rear axle, which does compromise cargo space design just like your 100, but keeps a nod towards rougher usage. It still has low range, too - all together, still a real 4x4.

For the enthusiasts among us, I think the 200 series represents a departure in that it just doesn't evoke an overland travel experience. It's the first time I said 'I'd rather have a Sequoia'. The FJ Cruiser is really supposed to pick up the Land Cruiser heritage, except that it doesn't other than perhaps in the way moon boots carry on a heritage of snow boots.

To that point, the LC wasn't offered in 2012, and 2013 has some style refinements that to me edge it yet closer to what everything else looks like these days (crossover). It was rumored that Toyota is going to merge the two platforms and Sequoia will become an edition of the Land Cruiser (assumably either the base or premium edition). If true, I think the era of the mid-sized Land Cruiser is over and it is really the Sequoia that survives with the LC nameplate.

We've made a few references to Slee in Golden on this thread. If your 100 is feeling a little bit less sharp then it did, 140K is a good time for baseline maintenance. This can be stuff from axle rebuilds (bearings, seals, etc.) to some engine basics like throttle body cleaning. Slee will do it right without overselling, and they can provide some options on suspension upgrades (like better shocks) that would benefit a ski/mountain rig if you do want to keep it for another 100K or so.

Muleski (hey, it's Nay from MUD) might be able to give some better guidance since he actually had Slee baseline his 100.
post #229 of 232
Quote:
Originally Posted by NayBreak View Post

The 200 is still a Land Cruiser, so if you like the way it looks (Highlander on steroids)...I don't think I've seen much if anything that suggests the underpinnings are somehow diminished. It still has a solid rear axle, which does compromise cargo space design just like your 100, but keeps a nod towards rougher usage. It still has low range, too - all together, still a real 4x4.

For the enthusiasts among us, I think the 200 series represents a departure in that it just doesn't evoke an overland travel experience. It's the first time I said 'I'd rather have a Sequoia'. The FJ Cruiser is really supposed to pick up the Land Cruiser heritage, except that it doesn't other than perhaps in the way moon boots carry on a heritage of snow boots.

To that point, the LC wasn't offered in 2012, and 2013 has some style refinements that to me edge it yet closer to what everything else looks like these days (crossover). It was rumored that Toyota is going to merge the two platforms and Sequoia will become an edition of the Land Cruiser (assumably either the base or premium edition). If true, I think the era of the mid-sized Land Cruiser is over and it is really the Sequoia that survives with the LC nameplate.

We've made a few references to Slee in Golden on this thread. If your 100 is feeling a little bit less sharp then it did, 140K is a good time for baseline maintenance. This can be stuff from axle rebuilds (bearings, seals, etc.) to some engine basics like throttle body cleaning. Slee will do it right without overselling, and they can provide some options on suspension upgrades (like better shocks) that would benefit a ski/mountain rig if you do want to keep it for another 100K or so.

Muleski (hey, it's Nay from MUD) might be able to give some better guidance since he actually had Slee baseline his 100.

 

hmmm, yeah. I know I can keep this one for a long time, but I guess I was waiting to see if trading up to the "new" one (200) would work -- but I don't really like it. So I've been thinking about really overhauling mine (replacing a dented panel, fixing the stupid backup camera/dvd/navi system, etc) and just committing to the long haul. Sounds like a trip to Slee is a good idea.

post #230 of 232

I've been in this car game for a long time, and I've owned a pretty interesting near 50 cars in my life. As mentioned, my wife and I each drive a Toyota LC. My brother and his family have two. He's had, and has more cars than I, including some pretty exotic ones. Like an AMG G-wagon. Loves the LC's. 

 

I love the mix of utility and rugged durability, coupled with the comfort and relative luxury of the 100 series LC. I've owned an 80, and if I were into off-roading it, and lived in Utah instead of New England, I might still have one. I have never considered buying a LC new, or close to new. The smartest buy that we ever made was buying a Toyota certified one, off a two year lease, for $40K, which included a 100K bumper to bumper warranty, and about $2K of cosmetic work that I nitpicked the dealer on...chipped headlight, replaced windshield, etc. These things depreciate really quickly once they have about 60K miles on them, and they are barely broken in. I am dead serious about the one that we just replaced. I had some serious rust issues. The windshield frame under the gasket had rotted....due to a crappy windshield installation {not the dealer} that didn't rear it's head for about four years. The rear hatch was also rusting. But at 255K miles, it ran as new. Literally as new. I would have hopped in that truck and driven to Alaska and back without a thought, and I've owned cars like an Audi S8, and two S6's that had so many issues that I would probably thing twice about driving two miles to get a cup of coffee! 

 

I wanted a specific year. 2003. You'll find that many feel it's the best year. Built in the old factory, has the 5 speed transmission, and if you are lucky, can be bought without the nav system. It also has a dipstick for the transmission, which they did away with in 2004. I almost bought a 2004, and would have replaced the oil pan to add a dipstick. The only plus that I see to a newer 100 are the headlights, but I've settled on bulbs that work for me. Some will retro fit to the 2005 or newer headlights and grill.  I have driven a 200 a few times, and I am not a real fan yet, and not a fan at the price. I'm not a fan of Range Rovers, or Cayennes....though I do keep looking at 6-speed GTS's. The SUV that drives like a 911. The beauty of this vehicle is that you can but a great one in the range of $25K. You can sometimes do much better than that. One that will look new, feel new, and should be very reliable. The last time around I came real close to buying a 2003 Lexus LX470, but I just prefer the really understated Toyota badge. The Lexus has just incredible paint, better lights, the nicest leather you'll see, and a wonderful stereo. They are nice, and easier to find that a Toyota. I like the Toyota.  

 

Christo Slee is an absolute guru. He knows these vehicles inside and out. I had a very detailed list of what I wanted done, what I wanted checked, and we also talked about some other things, and I was delighted with the quality of his work, his communication, etc. He is not cheap. He charges a fair price, IMO. I think that doing a thorough baseline service on a healthy LC should make it as trouble free and reliable as any vehicle on the road for another 100K miles. In fact if I were to buy another used LC anywhere in the country, I would consider getting it to him to do some work, then picking it up and or shipping it home. It would be worth the $1K or so in extra flight/shipping expenses to me. Then again, I plan on driving these for 15 years and 200K miles or more when I buy them. I am a firm believer in the baseline, and knowing exactly what you have. 

 

Our third car is an Audi S4 cabrio, built to RS4 specs. It's as howl to drive, but we don't drive it much. I've had cars that I've tracked and auto crossed. But for some reason I just love these LC's. Very basic 4.7 liter V8, a lot of torque. Comfortable, good systems, and great visibility. Great build quality. Tremendous paint. I feel very safe in their car, in any kind of weather. And they hold together. I picked up a friend at the airport a month ago, in our 2003, and he asked if it was a brand new car. He noticed it was a different color than my old one. This guy has a BMW 550 and a 911C4, and he thought a 10 year old LC was brand new. 

 

I was just out in the driveway doing some work on my daughter's 2002 H6 Outback. Great little car, and a mountain goat in snow. I've looked around a bit at a newer 3.0R for her, and guess what, I look at the price and think "This is nuts.....I could buy a Landcruiser for just a bit more money." BTW, she loves driving the LC's. 

 

I know I sound like a zealot. Just a huge fan of these. 

post #231 of 232
Thread Starter 
NayBreak and Muleski, thank you for sharing all of that, very helpful indeed. Joined mud a few weeks ago, and have been reading up on there a lot, helped me quite a bit. And I've been PM'ing with a few members who are selling.

I've come to the conclusion that I'm most likely going to buy from an enthusiast, just as I've typically done with sports cars over the years. After reviewing a few 100's locally and each was neglected service-wise....and yet the owners wanted top dollar, I just can't settle.

The ones I'm most interested in seem to be in CO, AZ and a few on the East Coast. In SoCal, there are some interesting 80's, but after talking to the guys at Extreme (kind of like SoCal's version of Slee I'm told), I've focused on the 100 as my best solution.

The search is on. smile.gif
post #232 of 232
Don't hesitate to look up the Rising Sun chapter in Denver if you find one in CO - one of those guys would probably be happy to look at it for you. MUD is a great resource, good luck with the hunt smile.gif.
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