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4.7 v8 lpg or 4.2td


 
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ozzymondo
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Joined: 24 May 2008
Posts: 325
Location: doncaster

PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 3:46    Post subject: 4.7 v8 lpg or 4.2td Reply with quote

hi everybody , looking to buy an amazon for overlanding and in need of some advice please.
firstly i already own a colorado 3.0 td so i know all about toyota's build quality.
I went on my first overland trip earlier this year to north africa with my mate and covered 4000 miles round trip.
now that the economy is in dire straights i think its a good time for me to cash in and buy an amazon as the prices for these magnificent 4x4 have dropped so much.
the price of unleaded in Africa is only 50-60p a litre, and about the same for diesel so buying an lpg version would suit me fine .
whilst i was over there i saw a lot of the older shaped 100 series(privately owned ) and i think most of them were 4.2td's and not many of the newer shaped amazons , however all of the hire vehicles over there were the newer shaped ones but were normally aspirated ie non turbo.
can anyone please give me some much needed advice, thanks Mark.
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 3:46    Post subject: Google Ads keep this community free to join!


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Wandering Willy
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Joined: 18 Jul 2007
Posts: 1016
Location: Norfolk

PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 11:24    Post subject: Reply with quote

The first thing to say is that any of them will do what you want but with each you face a different set of potential problems.

If you want a street racer, forget it with a Land Cruiser. As standard, they make a good long distance tourer. Once modified for deserts and mountains they lose some of the motorway appeal. So don't confuse the two situations. One guy here has taken a completely standard Colorado down to somewhere like Kenya and thinks it is great. I don't know Kenya, it is different from suburban England but the same car would be good in both situations (apparently).

There is a big advantage to the KISS route. Take a standard car and use it as it was meant to be used. Once you start adding and changing the opportunity for problems increases. So LPG could be a mistake unless you are sure you can fix it or revert to petrol in case of problems. Also, LPG cars have restrictions on ferries and in tunnels (eg Dartford, Channel crossings).

Second point: in the UK we only get a few of the range of models made by Toyota. For example, there is the 105 series which is not sold here. This is the body off the 100 series (the recent model amazon) with a solid front axle instead of the independent front suspension ofn the 100 series. Similarly, I think some or all of the 105 diesels have a normally aspirated/non-turbocharged engine.

Then there are the changes you can get to the transmission. Apart from the automatic/manual gearbox story there are several options on the diff lockers/LSD front. As I understand it, the 100 series with the petrol engine has a clever traction control system which replaces (sort of) the locking diffs on the transfer box and back axle you get on the diesel engined 100 series.

So, the range of possibilities is pretty large even with the 'standard' cars if you know where to look.

Some serious off-roaders also fit a locking diffs to the front axle to cope with sand dunes and heavy mud but that's another story.

Many serious off-roaders like the 80 series (92-98 amazon) because it's very robust, a bit cheaper, simpler, it has excellent articulation because of the solid front and rear axles and there are lots of useful bits available to add for off-road driving. But you have to be a bit more careful checking the car before setting off because these are now 10+ years old.

You could buy a good 80 for 3,000 and then spend another 3,000 getting it ready for a long trip. It would look like a heap of junk unless you knew what all the bits were for. Look at some of the discussion threads here - particularly the ones under the Laning / Offroading / Overlanding heading and study the photos to see what sort of kit has been added or changed.

I realise this has probably left you no further forward. So, to summarise, start with a good base car. A late 80 petrol or diesel would make a fine start (97-98 car?) and change only what has to be changed in order to provide the facilities you need. Check everything very carefully and replace anything looking tired or worn (BEBs, Birfields, Electrics, etc.) Consider fitting an extra fuel tank to increase range. Choose suitable tyres (several different sets or additional spares wouldn't be out of order) and enjoy the trip.

Willy
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ozzymondo
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Joined: 24 May 2008
Posts: 325
Location: doncaster

PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 12:39    Post subject: lpg v td Reply with quote

thanks for that ifo Willy , fistly can i say i am coming up to 40 years of age and i am certainly not interested in 0-60 times.
my trip to Africa opened my eyes a little and to be honest i can't wait to get back there.
me and my mate travelled the 400 miles in his 200tdi defender and the ride and noise/comfort factor were pretty aweful.
As i mentioned before a lot of the amazon's i saw over there were non turbo 4.2's and as you pointed out were 105 series.
now since i posted the last post i came across at least 3 people on the forum with misfiring engines on the 4.7v8 lpg's.
This does not sound good at all and i think i am goin to stick with the 4.2td.
One of the guys in our party was on a fly drive and had a 105 series and was'nt too impressed with the pick up of his machine, i wish i had taken the time to have a quick test drive whilst there,but anyway that not an issue just now.
I don't know if you realise, but i have owned a collie 3.0td lwb now for 6 years and i am more than happy with the refinement of thi vehicle.
I am just looking for something a bit more robust and thats not goin to bat an eyelid once over 250k.
thanks for the advice it has invaluable so far , Mark
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Wandering Willy
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Joined: 18 Jul 2007
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Location: Norfolk

PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 16:04    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the update. It's sometimes difficult to picture the author of these discussions. Sorry if I had the wrong idea.

Re the Colorado, I was trying to indicate that what you have is already a very capable vehicle and sometimes it's a case of moving forward only to find you have replaced a 'perfect' car with a lemon (or citroen as they say in the trade! - bad joke, sorry.).

I have a 2002 Amazon GX which I mention only because it doesn't have some of the fancy bits which seem to cause owners of that model (they have the VX version) a lot of problems. Primarily, this is the self leveling suspension which can be an expensive system to sort out once it goes wrong. There aren't a lot of GXs in the UK but there are enough that if you want one a good one can be found. However, the next step back is the 80 and then you start the whole story over again.

My Amazon is a diesel automatic and the automatic is very good. However, some people wouldn't think of going in anything but a manual gearbox car.

There are a lot of options to think about and fixing the engine type removes one of the main ones. After that it's down to things like gearbox, raised suspension, tyres, extra bits like additional foul tanks, water tank, fridge/freezer, bull bar, extra lights...

The other place to start looking are the specialist bits suppliers (Frog Island, Footloose, TBR, etc.). You have missed the 4X4 shows but they will come around again from next Spring. There is lot of advice available from the chaps at these places as well as here if you have questions or just want to see what is available.

Good Luck

Willy
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ozzymondo
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Joined: 24 May 2008
Posts: 325
Location: doncaster

PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 17:23    Post subject: overlanding Reply with quote

sorry willy , i knew i should have told you everything.
I also have a defender td5 for off roading/green laning etc and have been to all the shows this year apart from peterborough because i was in Africa.
i am v familiar with equipment and spec for overlanding , and its allways goin to be a toyota for overlanding , just  not sure which one .
i do like the 80 series v much and a manual version will prob end up being my choice, however my missis much prefers the 100 amazon , thats why i contemplated the 4.7v8 lpg as i could run all through europe on lpg and unleaded once in Africa as it is only 50-60p per litre.
are you gettin a clearer picture of me now ?
all this while the poor old collie gets relegated to a work vehicle.
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uk_vette
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Joined: 29 Oct 2007
Posts: 1421
Location: Warrington, Cheshire

PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 17:35    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just as a side note,
If and when the rear spheres give up the ghost, is it epensive to fix, or simply extorsionate?
Is there the option to fit standard coil springs, and do away some how with the ride height stuff.?
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Wandering Willy
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Joined: 18 Jul 2007
Posts: 1016
Location: Norfolk

PostPosted: Tue Nov 11, 2008 21:35    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's extortionate.

However, there are options and alternatives. This guy in America has seen the possibility of making something better as the basis of a nice little business:-

http://www.activesuspensionsystems.com/buylx470ac.html

I don't know if his parts solve the problem (long term) but it's worth looking to see what is out there. This chap can offer rebuilt or new/alternative spheres at a lower price and can back up his claims with a bit of science. Even if you have to ship them out of the US the price seems worth considering.

The other part that can cause problems is the sensors. They can be replaced (expensive) or you can dismantle, clean and re-install. You might need some contact cleaner and some silicone sealant.

Willy
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gilghana
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Joined: 12 Jun 2008
Posts: 265
Location: It varies at the moment!

PostPosted: Wed Nov 12, 2008 16:25    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe it is not that big a deal to retro-fit coils to an active 100 series LC.  
For a dedicated weekend/overland vehicle I would not go the LPG route.  It means you are limited to the capacity of your petrol tank plus jerries, whereas with a diesel you can fit two tanks.  Africa is a big place, with varied fuel prices but for me the flexibility of one fuel type with two tanks would be better than the potential cost savings of LPG in developed places.  Yes the 105 is no rocket sled, but you could turbo it, but to be honest it is a rare beast (esp in UK) and not worth the hassle acquiring, esp as a good 80 series is just as good and arguably a better, stronger vehicle.  As a dedicated expedition base, living or buying in the UK I would rank them like this:
1) As good as you can find HDJ80.  Robust, comfort, power
2) HDJ100 without active susp.  Robust, MORE comfort, power.  Only thing is IFS, but plenty being abused in Africa and Oz without everyone complaining.  

And IMHO depending on the vehicle 1st and 2nd place could swap around nooooo problem!
Of course depending on what you want to go through or spend, then other options come up - HZJ78 or 79, the new HZJ76....
If you are looking for perhaps the 'ultimate' then an Australian import HDJ78 or 79 with factory locking diffs would be the best, but you would have a bit of a mission to buy one...  Or a HZJ78 with a turbo (personal bias coming in now  Very Happy )
As Willy says, once you have decided on the engine then all the other stuff comes up...  
cheers,
Gil
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