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Looking at an Older GXL

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  • Looking at an Older GXL

    Hi Everyone,
    I'm a new member and this is my first post...

    In another life, in another country, I used to do a lot of camping and outdoor activities. Moving to Australia and having kids put that life on hold, but now I'm ready to get back into it (with the family in tow). We have been looking for a 7 or 8 seater for when family visits from overseas, and also for a vehicle that can carry bikes on a hitch, or tow a trailer, or mount a kayak or surf boards on the roof. Maybe that vehicle could even do some off-roading, camping, and general cruising.

    I never even considered it as an option, but I seem to have stumbled upon the car that can do it all - the Toyota Prado. I found one locally that is:
    • 2003
    • V6 4L Petrol
    • 4Sp Auto
    • 217k km
    • A bit dirty inside, but decent
    • Leaking radiator
    • Torn inner CV boot
    • Fraying leather on steering wheel
    • Seems to run really well
    • Smooth ride
    • Factory hitch
    • No visible mods
    • Good tires (though spare is a steel rim with almost no tread left on the tire)
    The combination of doing the test drive and also browsing these forums has gotten me really excited about it! It sounds like these are really great vehicles, even if a little thirsty on the fuel. I've seen the lists of things that commonly go wrong, and verified the status on this one, like:
    • Cracked dash (not on this one, but someone had mounted a GPS or similar permanently to the dash with resultant hole)
    • Fuel filler hose previously replaced
    • No cracks or sag in rear door
    • A/C seems to work fine (no evap leak)
    • No tail clunk
    I'm having it inspected by a mechanic in two days and could be the proud owner by the end of the week.

    So the point of this post is really two things:

    1. I wanted to see if anyone thought it was a decent deal at $9000? Based on and other sites, it seems fairly priced.

    2. I wanted to thank everyone for their posts on PradoPoint, and for the admins and whoever it is that funds this site. It's a fantastic resource!


  • #2
    A complete service history would be a must.. If any are missed, Check underside of oil filler cap for gunk, if some there, then I'd be paying to have an oil change done and drop the little mini sump, and physically check the pickup.. if that shows any sign of sludge or debris, walk away. Sign of a motor on the way out from not servicing. They need oil done every 10k without fail.

    You neglect to say which model it is? the steel rim is unusual, and only came on the GX.. Some GX had flares added to make them look like a GXL.. Check the door plate for the model code. If its a GX, too expensive and likely other issues if its had flares added.

    The earlier 4 Speed are a lot thirstier. and will likely be needing plugs/ 02 sensors done soon at 600-800 bucks.

    See if it has rear air (Vents in roof) if not, they can get pretty warm in summer in the back.

    I've seen similar go for a grand or more cheaper in good nick.. Then I've also seen a v6 2006 Grande go for nearly 19k with 285,000...


    • #3
      Hi Piggy thanks for the response. It's a GXL so the rear steel rim is odd - should all be alloy. I have seen some alloy rims on ebay/gumtree for around $150-200, so will probably do that eventually.

      By gunk under the filler cap, do you mean that brown sludge, or is any kind of specks of black unacceptable? I had a look under and there wasn't any sludge, but there were some specks of black stuff. It's mostly been sitting for the last 3 years as it's an elderly driver, so was just doing short drives to the supermarket, etc.

      I don't recall if there's A/C outlets in the back, will have a look again on Wednesday.

      One other thing I noticed was that the splash guards in the wheel wells were both missing. This is the plastic barrier that sits between the wheel well and the engine. Any idea why it would be gone?

      It sounds like if I could get them down to $8k it would be a reasonable buy?


      • #4
        Without knowing service history its hard to price it. Splash guards always break down due to the heat, you can make new ones up easily. there is templates online. or about $50 from a few dealers.

        Elderly is good, likely had it serviced (Hopefully) by a dealership or mechanic.

        For that type of price though, i'd imagine you will find a few later models around. Worth still comparing. The V6 is bulletproof to half a million and beyond with regular servicing.


        • #5
          Had another look today and also had Redbook Inspect come do their thing. As much as I’ve gotten addicted to the Prado, I decided to let this one go. I had negotiated $8k for the price, but the utter lack of service history along with the additional things noted by the mechanic and there’s just too much unknown. If I had a garage and endless hours to put into it I would’ve bought it, but I want to spend my time driving it and not fixing it (or wondering what might break next).

          oh well! Will keep searching.


          • #6
            I've got a rock solid white 2006 GXL D4D (diesel, 6 speed manual, 250 000 kms) that I want to get rid of. Hoping to get around 15k for it, but the market will have to decide. Is that outside your budget?