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Old 02-20-2019, 10:31 AM
 
Location: Texas
5,615 posts, read 12,392,550 times
Reputation: 10630

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My brother has a 96 Tacoma and I'd say it's crude, at best. It rattles, the A/C has always been lousy since the day he bought it. Ride, there isn't much in a 4x4 Tacoma of that model. It rides like a stiff legged mule as my brother puts it. The 4 banger is no powerhouse and in bro's opinion, anemic at best. You can forget 20mpgs as it's not gonna happen. The 4x4 system sucks what little power the engine has and you pretty much have to push the thing down the road even in 2 wheel drive. Hiway he sees 17 mpgs and that's at 60 mph. Push it faster and the race is on between you getting where you're going and the gas gauge hitting empty. Last time I was in his truck, it had just over 150,000 miles on it. Repairs have been, in my opinion comparing to my Fords, incredibly expensive. His had to have a new steering box- cost of parts alone was over $4,000.00 plus labor. New clutch and main shaft on the 5 speed manual transmission, another 4 grand. And then the usual wearables like water pump, alternator, etc but at Toyota prices. Parts are twice what they are for a Ford, GM, etc so get a grip on the wallet for any repairs. The biggest advantage of one- it will go just about any where you got guts enough to drive it. They will go places you won't walk. But it's a rough, crude, ride while doing it. Our WWII Army Jeep is a Cadillac by comparison.


There is zero comparison between the old Tacos and the new ones. The old ones up to 1996 were a real 4x4 with all wheels pulling. They were more of a tool than a daily driver. The newer models are more targeted for the soccer families. The newer models do not have lockout axles, for an example. The 4x4 system is vacuum actuated vs a manual 100% lockup of the older ones. Suspension is far more user friendly. The interiors are nicer and spacious.
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Old 02-20-2019, 11:38 AM
 
Location: Murrica
2,804 posts, read 1,592,513 times
Reputation: 1651
Quote:
Originally Posted by TrapperL View Post
His had to have a new steering box- cost of parts alone was over $4,000.00 plus labor.
Huh? that truck has steering rack and it costs ~$600-800 for a new OEM. A good reman will cost ~$200.
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Old 02-20-2019, 12:26 PM
 
Location: San Ramon, Seattle, Anchorage, Reykjavik
2,040 posts, read 844,165 times
Reputation: 2776
Quote:
Originally Posted by TrapperL View Post
My brother has a 96 Tacoma and I'd say it's crude, at best. It rattles, the A/C has always been lousy since the day he bought it. Ride, there isn't much in a 4x4 Tacoma of that model. It rides like a stiff legged mule as my brother puts it. The 4 banger is no powerhouse and in bro's opinion, anemic at best. You can forget 20mpgs as it's not gonna happen. The 4x4 system sucks what little power the engine has and you pretty much have to push the thing down the road even in 2 wheel drive. Hiway he sees 17 mpgs and that's at 60 mph. Push it faster and the race is on between you getting where you're going and the gas gauge hitting empty. Last time I was in his truck, it had just over 150,000 miles on it. Repairs have been, in my opinion comparing to my Fords, incredibly expensive. His had to have a new steering box- cost of parts alone was over $4,000.00 plus labor. New clutch and main shaft on the 5 speed manual transmission, another 4 grand. And then the usual wearables like water pump, alternator, etc but at Toyota prices. Parts are twice what they are for a Ford, GM, etc so get a grip on the wallet for any repairs. The biggest advantage of one- it will go just about any where you got guts enough to drive it. They will go places you won't walk. But it's a rough, crude, ride while doing it. Our WWII Army Jeep is a Cadillac by comparison.


There is zero comparison between the old Tacos and the new ones. The old ones up to 1996 were a real 4x4 with all wheels pulling. They were more of a tool than a daily driver. The newer models are more targeted for the soccer families. The newer models do not have lockout axles, for an example. The 4x4 system is vacuum actuated vs a manual 100% lockup of the older ones. Suspension is far more user friendly. The interiors are nicer and spacious.
I just have no way to square this with my 20+ years of experience with Tacomas. Are you describing the older Toyota Pickup? That was a completely different model and I would agree that it was designed for heavy offroad, low speed work in the third world, so wasn't necessarily a great fit in the US (although it did sell well).


The price for the steering box is far from my experience as well, even for a Land Cruiser.
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Old 02-20-2019, 12:33 PM
 
Location: Kirkland, WA (Metro Seattle)
3,776 posts, read 3,037,793 times
Reputation: 6642
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stonepa View Post
I'm surprised anyone would say the Tacomas (or 4Runners for that matter) from 1990 - 1997 are crude. In the 80s, call the tToyota Pickup? Maybe. But that doesn't apply to the 90s (the Tacoma-named models). Much different vehicles.
Well, I'm being a bit harsh and opinionated (as usual ) only because the V6 in my Gen I was NOT my favorite engine. Not the best mileage, a bit rough. No, wasn't out of tune or damaged, just ran that way. 3.6 or 3.8, I do believe? My '04 TRD 4x4 was no fun, no fun at all, on the street. It was a truck. Maybe we should just let trucks be trucks and not be cars? Guess I'm spoiled.

As other guy(s) said on this thread, the four was supposedly waaaay better. My buddy David had a Gen 1 2wd of that era, with the four, in a nifty dark green. He'd haul motorcycles all over hell's creation with it, dirtbikes I mean. Never gave him any trouble. We'd go up gravel roads to ORV areas in WA State, me in my TRD '04 4x4, he in that. I didn't "need" 4x4 per se, and he did just fine with the 2wd. I never had to pull him out of anything.

My opinion is the Gen II are "slicker". I found the Gen I crude, compared to, but would buy one of those for TEN Fords or Chevys.

OP, hope it works out.
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Old 02-20-2019, 01:49 PM
 
Location: Texas
5,615 posts, read 12,392,550 times
Reputation: 10630
For those that are intelligence challenged. Here is a steering box for a 1996 Toyota 4x4 Tacoma. You won't buy one for a couple hundred bucks from Toyota.
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Old 02-20-2019, 02:52 PM
 
Location: Murrica
2,804 posts, read 1,592,513 times
Reputation: 1651
Quote:
Originally Posted by TrapperL View Post
For those that are intelligence challenged. Here is a steering box for a 1996 Toyota 4x4 Tacoma. You won't buy one for a couple hundred bucks from Toyota.
No, you won't buy one from Toyota at all.

Here is Camelback Toyota online site. https://parts.camelbacktoyota.com/pa...gramCallOut=16

If you Google 1996 Tacoma, you'll find it has a rack and pinion. Here's the Taco forum where they talk about, yes, the steering rack. https://www.tacomaworld.com/threads/...to-buy.385162/

Here is Autozone. Guess they're confused too: https://www.autozone.com/suspension-...el/rack-pinion
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Old 02-20-2019, 02:58 PM
 
Location: San Ramon, Seattle, Anchorage, Reykjavik
2,040 posts, read 844,165 times
Reputation: 2776
Quote:
Originally Posted by TrapperL View Post
For those that are intelligence challenged. Here is a steering box for a 1996 Toyota 4x4 Tacoma. You won't buy one for a couple hundred bucks from Toyota.
That is an older model steering gear, most likely off a solid axle Land Cruiser. I can buy that new at Toyota for $500. I can buy an uprated NEW one from a variety of 4x4 offroad specialists for $100 more than the Toyota unit. And a rebuilt one is less that $100. Won't fit the Tacoma however.

Glad I could clear that up.
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Old 02-20-2019, 03:34 PM
 
Location: Murrica
2,804 posts, read 1,592,513 times
Reputation: 1651
Here is the exact picture he used: https://www.ebay.com/itm/Remanufactu...sAAOSwTmtaBtaj

From an 1981 to 1985 Toyota truck or 4Runner.

I've been fully intelligenced now.
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Old 02-20-2019, 03:48 PM
 
Location: Raleigh
7,658 posts, read 5,640,799 times
Reputation: 10537
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stonepa View Post
I'm surprised anyone would say the Tacomas (or 4Runners for that matter) from 1990 - 1997 are crude. In the 80s, call the tToyota Pickup? Maybe. But that doesn't apply to the 90s (the Tacoma-named models). Much different vehicles.
Crude? Maybe not Crude. But Spartan.
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Old 02-20-2019, 04:02 PM
 
Location: Central Mass
1,763 posts, read 2,323,725 times
Reputation: 1695
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stonepa View Post
That is an older model steering gear, most likely off a solid axle Land Cruiser. I can buy that new at Toyota for $500. I can buy an uprated NEW one from a variety of 4x4 offroad specialists for $100 more than the Toyota unit. And a rebuilt one is less that $100. Won't fit the Tacoma however.

Glad I could clear that up.
The N130 95 4runner used reciprocating ball. They didn't change to rack and pinion till the 95/96 N180 4runnner.

However, EVERY Taco had R&P. The Taco is (was?) also unique to North America - it's not just a rebadged Hilux
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