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  1. #1
    Tuna, No Crust Jax05's Avatar
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    Cheap daily + tow rig

    Seems like an impossible thing to find something that is capable, affordable, and practical.

    I've been looking for something that could tow my track car and serve as a daily driver. I need something that's not a total P.O.S. to daily drive, reliable, gets reasonable gas mileage, can tow at least 6500 lbs, and can be found for $7-8k. That's a lot of requirements on a small budget, it seems like only the 4Runner v8 (and Lexus GX470) could get close to filling all those roles.

    I have also considered Armada, but damn those things are yuge and gas mileage sucks (also not sure on reliability). Great towing capacity though. Kinda similar story with Tahoe/Yukon in that price range.

    Anything else you guys would recommend? F150 ecoboost would definitely be the best solution, unfortunately there's no budget for it at this time. SUVs would be preferable because it makes it easier to store all the gear inside.

    Maybe 4Runner is the answer.
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  2. #2
    Maximum Gainz 1slo5oh's Avatar
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    I have had a couple 2005-2006 Chevrolet 1500 HD's that were absolute work horses... not sure how old of a vehicle you are looking for but those come factory with 6.0L / 4L80 and can handle pretty much anything you want to throw at it. And you should be able to find them pretty easy and cheap these days...

    As far as the Ecoboost is concerned... I can praise that little 3.5L TT all day... I have a 2012 f150 I currently commute with and it tows my car / boat with ease. But youll definitely spend a little more than $7-8K
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  3. #3
    Tuna, No Crust Jax05's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by 1slo5oh View Post
    I have had a couple 2005-2006 Chevrolet 1500 HD's that were absolute work horses... not sure how old of a vehicle you are looking for but those come factory with 6.0L / 4L80 and can handle pretty much anything you want to throw at it. And you should be able to find them pretty easy and cheap these days...

    As far as the Ecoboost is concerned... I can praise that little 3.5L TT all day... I have a 2012 f150 I currently commute with and it tows my car / boat with ease. But youll definitely spend a little more than $7-8K
    05 would probably be the oldest. Is the 6.0/4l80 combo more reliable than 5.3 vortec with 4l60? Seem like 4l60 have some issues.

    I think F150 eco is the way to go in near future, I'm just not mentally ready to give up on the Mustang.
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  4. #4
    Maximum Gainz 1slo5oh's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Jax05 View Post
    05 would probably be the oldest. Is the 6.0/4l80 combo more reliable than 5.3 vortec with 4l60? Seem like 4l60 have some issues.

    I think F150 eco is the way to go in near future, I'm just not mentally ready to give up on the Mustang.
    Yeah the 6.0 / 4L80 combo is where its at if you do any kind of towing , not to mention parts are cheap and plentiful should you have any problems... The 5.3l / 4l60 is fine for daily driving and hauling like 6 bags of mulch from Home Depot (max) lol . But I have straight up murdered more than a few 4l60's in my lifetime... the 4L80 is basically a TH400 with an overdrive.


    And Im on that F150 Eco & Mustang time bruh... its glorious
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  5. #5
    Registered User akmerle's Avatar
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    Will be very tough to find a V8 Runner with less than 200k miles in that price range. That is their maxed out towing capacity. Will not get decent mileage either.

    The older silverados with the 5.3 are cheap / reliable / easy to work on, and would be able to tow that better than the 4 runner.

    Have you looked at Nissan Titans?
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    8 grand is getting you pretty close to an E70 X5d. You can probably find one under 150k miles. It’s going to be a base level trim and pre LCI, but it’s going to be a better daily than anything mentioned. It will tow much better than the 4.7 GX or 4R (I’ve owned them, currently have an LX470). I use my X5d as the road trip and tow vehicle. The drivetrain is as close to bulletproof a BMW can get. Tune and delete down the road and you’ll have a very fun daily.

    My X5d gets 28mpg@70mph right now. Once deleted and tuned over 30mpg is easy.

    Towing 4700lbs I average 17mpg (there’s always traffic where I live)
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  7. #7
    Tuna, No Crust Jax05's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by akmerle View Post
    Will be very tough to find a V8 Runner with less than 200k miles in that price range. That is their maxed out towing capacity. Will not get decent mileage either.

    The older silverados with the 5.3 are cheap / reliable / easy to work on, and would be able to tow that better than the 4 runner.

    Have you looked at Nissan Titans?
    My car and trailer + tools/parts are about 5500lbs so I figured something with 6500-7000 should be adequate the few times a year I need to tow something. But yeah I agree something bigger would do better.

    I've looked at Titans, which lead me to Armada since they're nearly same thing. I'm just not sure about their reliability.

    Originally Posted by TTViper View Post
    8 grand is getting you pretty close to an E70 X5d. You can probably find one under 150k miles. It’s going to be a base level trim and pre LCI, but it’s going to be a better daily than anything mentioned. It will tow much better than the 4.7 GX or 4R (I’ve owned them, currently have an LX470). I use my X5d as the road trip and tow vehicle. The drivetrain is as close to bulletproof a BMW can get. Tune and delete down the road and you’ll have a very fun daily.

    My X5d gets 28mpg@70mph right now. Once deleted and tuned over 30mpg is easy.

    Towing 4700lbs I average 17mpg (there’s always traffic where I live)
    I haven't even thought of the X5d. Thanks.
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  8. #8
    Registered User bsmit107's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by akmerle View Post
    Will be very tough to find a V8 Runner with less than 200k miles in that price range. That is their maxed out towing capacity. Will not get decent mileage either.

    The older silverados with the 5.3 are cheap / reliable / easy to work on, and would be able to tow that better than the 4 runner.

    Have you looked at Nissan Titans?
    My gf sold her 2007 4Runner with the 4.7 V8 for $8200 a little over a year ago.....and it had 218k on the odometer and was only 2WD. Great shape though. Averaged like 17-18 mixed driving, not towing anything.

    If you can find one, a Toyota Sequoya would fit the bill. Early/Mid 2000's Tahoe or Expedition, pretty much any 4 door full size truck...just a matter of how much you want to spend/how new you're going to be able to get.

    Good luck in your search.
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  9. #9
    Tuna, No Crust Jax05's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by bsmit107 View Post
    My gf sold her 2007 4Runner with the 4.7 V8 for $8200 a little over a year ago.....and it had 218k on the odometer and was only 2WD.

    If you can find one, a Toyota Sequoya would fit the bill. Early/Mid 2000's Tahoe or Expedition, pretty much any 4 door full size truck...just a matter of how much you want to spend/how new you're going to be able to get.

    Good luck in your search.
    That's the annoying thing about 4Runners...people asking a lot for higher mileage ones. I've looked at Sequoia as well, but those are only rated at 6500 LBS.
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  10. #10
    Registered User tartface's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Jax05 View Post
    That's the annoying thing about 4Runners...people asking a lot for higher mileage ones. I've looked at Sequoia as well, but those are only rated at 6500 LBS.
    It will tow 3k over its max all day no problem. Been there done that lol.

    Don't get the GX, the air ride will bleed you out real quick. Look at an older Chevy/GMC 1500/Yukon. Also dont throw out older cummins diesel trucks. I buy them at $5k all day long.
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    Originally Posted by tartface View Post

    Don't get the GX, the air ride will bleed you out real quick.
    What is this even supposed to mean? The air bags in the GX/4R Limited are WHY you would want to consider them as better tow vehicles. The auto leveling is very useful for heavy loads, and it will have much better on-road manners vs the static suspension. The bags are reliable, and they are also easy to replace and are not that expensive. A conversion to springs in also inexpensive, and straight forward.

    Don’t listen to donks who tow well past a max tow capacity. Hopefully natural selection takes care of them without injuring others.
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  12. #12
    Tuna, No Crust Jax05's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by tartface View Post
    It will tow 3k over its max all day no problem. Been there done that lol.

    Don't get the GX, the air ride will bleed you out real quick. Look at an older Chevy/GMC 1500/Yukon. Also dont throw out older cummins diesel trucks. I buy them at $5k all day long.
    I'm not too concerned about the air ride, to be honest. I'd just throw it out at the first sign of issues. Also towing 3k over it's stated 6500lb tow cap is a lot to ask of any vehicle and just unsafe. I do a lot of my own work and diesel's are kind of a unknown for me, so I avoid that.




    Checking out 2 4runners and a Tahoe this weekend, hopefully go home with one of them.
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  13. #13
    Registered User tartface's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by TTViper View Post
    What is this even supposed to mean? The air bags in the GX/4R Limited are WHY you would want to consider them as better tow vehicles. The auto leveling is very useful for heavy loads, and it will have much better on-road manners vs the static suspension. The bags are reliable, and they are also easy to replace and are not that expensive. A conversion to springs in also inexpensive, and straight forward.

    Don’t listen to donks who tow well past a max tow capacity. Hopefully natural selection takes care of them without injuring others.
    Old car with air ride. Anything can blow: compressor, lines, fittings, bags, etc. Either convert to springs asap or gamble being stranded somewhere. Ask me how I know. Max tow capacity is governed by the braking power of the tow vehicle, but if your trailer has electric brakes you fine towing over. Nothing to be scared of bb.
    Originally Posted by Jax05 View Post
    I'm not too concerned about the air ride, to be honest. I'd just throw it out at the first sign of issues. Also towing 3k over it's stated 6500lb tow cap is a lot to ask of any vehicle and just unsafe. I do a lot of my own work and diesel's are kind of a unknown for me, so I avoid that.
    Checking out 2 4runners and a Tahoe this weekend, hopefully go home with one of them.
    Tahoe is an excellent choice. 4runner idk I drove a v6 a few days ago and not confident about its tow rating. Have you considered an Excursion?
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    Originally Posted by 1slo5oh View Post
    Yeah the 6.0 / 4L80 combo is where its at if you do any kind of towing , not to mention parts are cheap and plentiful should you have any problems... The 5.3l / 4l60 is fine for daily driving and hauling like 6 bags of mulch from Home Depot (max) lol . But I have straight up murdered more than a few 4l60's in my lifetime... the 4L80 is basically a TH400 with an overdrive.


    And Im on that F150 Eco & Mustang time bruh... its glorious
    For the price range this guys got a point. Full hydroform/mostly boxed steel frame, longer wheelbase, bigger tow rated brakes, leaf spring rear axle vs coils or airbags on a lot of the SUVs mentioned ITT.
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