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Discussion Starter #1
Hello. I need an SUV for under €3000, definitely manual transmission. Reliability is the most important factor – I don't care too much about all the features, gadgets and so forth, I just want it to be dependable and have the lowest possible probability of requiring expensive repairs in the near future (I'm not talking about small things to fix every now and then, I'm ready to diy a little bit). I would have loved a Land Cruiser, but they are mostly out of my price range and a bit too big for my wife to drive. Also, the 4.2 with 2.4 gas engine would be too thirsty for what I need.

So I have been looking at some 4.1 models, but I also came across this 2 door 2001 4.2 with the 1AZ-FE 2.0 engine, 200K km on it, 5cm lift kit, 2300€. Minor dents in the body, but otherwise well looked after and it also has a new clutch.

My questions are the following:

1. Is 200K km a high milage for the 1AZ-FE?
2. How common are the oil consumption and head bolt issues?
3. This engine has a timing chain. Do I need to change it now at 200K, or can I safely drive it till 250K? How expensive can changing it get?
4. Which one do you recommend from a reliability pov between these three: 4.1 2.0 gas, 4.2 2.0 gas and 4.2 2.0 diesel? (I know a few "reliability horror stories" about the 4.2 2.0 diesel engine but I don't know if the problems are more or less common than the ones in the 1AZ-FE).

If you have any other suggestions or useful info, kindly let me know :)
Any help much appreciated, thanks a lot in advance!
 

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The 1AZ-FE don't have any real issue... nothing to be afraid. The timing chain is good for life, your'e not supposed to change it (on a Toyota engine). I've seen many RAV4.2 between 300-400,000 km on the clock. Mine is at 280,000 km and still run great! If you can't afford to put gas in a 2.4L; just forget the diesel... too much reliability issues and cost of maintenance is too high. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The 1AZ-FE don't have any real issue... nothing to be afraid. The timing chain is good for life, your'e not supposed to change it (on a Toyota engine). Forget the diesel... too much reliability issues and cost of maintenance is too high.
Thank you very much, really great to hear I can be worry-free about the engine and the timing chain!
So this confirms what the other sources say about the diesels from this generation...

I have not bought the 2 door 2001 4.2 yet because I found out there will be a complicated and slow process in getting the license plates for it... some issues with the documentation that I hope will be sorted out soon, but if not...
The locking central differential makes me still interested in a 4.1. On the other hand videos like this show that it might make not so much of a difference in real world driving (?)

I think this link has been posted elsewhere on the forum, but with the help of Google Translate I was able to understand the 4.2 in the video has VSC, TRC and viscous-coupled centre diff. Could those features be the deciding factor, or it was just the momentum that made the difference?

Also, guilty as charged, but I am also tempted to get a Pinin with the super select gearbox (lets you choose between 2WD, AWD (open center diff), 4WD (locked center diff), 4WD LOCK with low range). Any opinion?
Thanks again!
 

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The Pajero is for sure a better off-roader than a RAV4.
 
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