Small 4x4

Finch

Well-Known Member
What's the best small petrol engine 4x4?
I'm without a 4x4 at the moment and I'm getting rid of my van and getting a car for the first time in years and with the way taxes are going I'm going to avoid another diesel.
It wants to be stalking-friendly or course. Don't need 7 seats. Don't need four really, I could even take rear seats out. SWB would do as long as I can get a large carcase tray and two lots of kit in the back. Needs basic off-road ability, reliable with good running costs as there ain't much money - under 5K. It will go off-road quite a lot, especially in winter, so it needs to be up to it and not too prone to dissolving in the wet. Less concerned about road manners and comfort as long as its driveable and not stupidly thirsty.

Like the idea of a Jimny - cheap to buy and run, cheap tax, and I could get a nice low mileage one but is it just too puny to be useful?

Other ides are:

Subaru Forester
Rav 4
Honda CRV
Daihatsu Terios

I know its an old one but Opinions appreciated.
 

Millerich

Well-Known Member
It's a shame you've discounted diesels, as I'm selling my Landcruiser for well under your budget. Foresters are very thirsty so any money you save on tax will disappear at the garage forecourt. They're also expensive on tax given emissions. Great cars though. I'm a big Subaru fan, having had two Imprezas before the Landcruiser.
 

Finch

Well-Known Member
I think incoming governments are just going to hammer diesels. If I could afford a new one, which I definitely can't, I'd be holding out for a scrappage scheme. My road tax is ridiculous now which makes the Jimny attractive.

I quite like Vitaras. Though they seem flimsy and I thought (perhaps wrongly) they were a bit rust-prone.

Toyotas always inspire confidence but will a Rav4 get stuck in a wet field?
 

finnbear270

Well-Known Member
Good luck on finding a Jimny!, some b***er was trying to buy one out from under me when I was doing a deal on one on the forecourt, always went where my Landrovers would have had second thoughts, very short wheelbase so hang on to your teeth in pothole country, bullet proof little engine, fill her up once every gulf war,a bit of a squeeze for two stalking, especially if you both drop something!:D, would I have one again?, most certainly. Steve.
 

timbrayford

Well-Known Member
I used to have Suzuki SJ410 the Jimny's predecessor.

With AT tyres it was brilliant off road. However, I nearly tipped it over one day towing a hydraulic platform at 50mph on the road, it started to snake around violently and I only managed to slow it in time and the other issue that I had was that it lacked performance at higher speeds. This was no problem for local trips but a bit of a nuisance on trunk roads and motorways.

If you can find one the Dacia Duster is available as a p/u variant, I'm not sure if they are marketed in the UK yet.
 

finnbear270

Well-Known Member
I used to have Suzuki SJ410 the Jimny's predecessor.

With AT tyres it was brilliant off road. However, I nearly tipped it over one day towing a hydraulic platform at 50mph on the road, it started to snake around violently and I only managed to slow it in time and the other issue that I had was that it lacked performance at higher speeds. This was no problem for local trips but a bit of a nuisance on trunk roads and motorways.

If you can find one the Dacia Duster is available as a p/u variant, I'm not sure if they are marketed in the UK yet.

Lots of user comments on these being unable to remove rice pudding skins!:D
 

Uncle Norm

Well-Known Member
I had a Jimny for five years of trouble free use. They are not at all puny and will go anywhere that one would consider taking a vehicle. I never got stuck with mine, subject to having some sensible tyres of course. I removed the rear seats but the load area is still small. When I had Fallow carcasses is the tray, my dog had to sit in the front foot well.
I had a special (removable) tow bar assembly installed and pulled a small trailer if I needed to carry more, such as my hoist.
Fuel consumption is quite heavy for such a small vehicle and an average of 35 mpg would be good.

The Jimny is ok as a car but you wouldn't want too many long journeys in it, simply due to the basic comfort and ride owing to the short wheelbase.
I sold it for something much bigger (L200) but may well go back to a Jimny in the future.

I owned a Forester for 13 years, superb engineering and never missed a beat. Fuel consumption is low 30s up to low 40s on a longer run. Very comfortable and excellent ride.
The overhang on the front makes it not ideal for off road and it is quite easily damaged. Having said that their off road capability is good in most other respects.
Parts are getting very expensive as some of the pattern parts people have stopped making the for the older models. Factory parts from a main dealer are eye wateringly expensive and the main reason why I decided to dispose of my forester. A new exhaust system would have cost more than the vehicle was worth.
 

8x57

Distinguished Member
I used to have Suzuki SJ410 the Jimny's predecessor.

With AT tyres it was brilliant off road. However, I nearly tipped it over one day towing a hydraulic platform at 50mph on the road, it started to snake around violently and I only managed to slow it in time and the other issue that I had was that it lacked performance at higher speeds. This was no problem for local trips but a bit of a nuisance on trunk roads and motorways.

If you can find one the Dacia Duster is available as a p/u variant, I'm not sure if they are marketed in the UK yet.

What was the weight of the platform in comparison to the SJ Tim, you don't think that possibly you were asking a bit much of it?

Finch how about adding a 4x4 Kangoo and a Yeti to your list also a Dacia Duster might be a consideration. I'm not sure about the RAV4 having ridden in one on a pheasant shoot last season. The RAV seemed to have difficulty going places that I had previously taken my 2 wheel drive Berlingo with no difficulty whatsoever..
 

timbrayford

Well-Known Member
What was the weight of the platform in comparison to the SJ Tim, you don't think that possibly you were asking a bit much of it?

Finch how about adding a 4x4 Kangoo and a Yeti to your list also a Dacia Duster might be a consideration. I'm not sure about the RAV4 having ridden in one on a pheasant shoot last season. The RAV seemed to have difficulty going places that I had previously taken my 2 wheel drive Berlingo with no difficulty whatsoever..
I've no idea how much the platform weighed, possibly more than the towing vehicle. This was some years ago and with over loading generally the police would only give a mild ticking off for it. Thoughts of having some horrible accident didn't really enter the thinking then.
 

Chasey

Well-Known Member
Suzuki's are too small, very uneconomical for their size and too uncomfortable for any sort of trip over a few miles

However the SJ410 etc are excellent off road cars

The RAV4 is comfortable, capabul off road, economical and big enough to get a full sized deer sled in length ways.

If I wanted a farm waggon that would never leave the farm id get a Landi or a Suzuki

If I will be doing tarmac as well? I'd get the Rav4 2.2D, Jeep Cherokee CRD, Nissan Xtrail
 

Chasey

Well-Known Member
What's the best small petrol engine 4x4?
I'm without a 4x4 at the moment and I'm getting rid of my van and getting a car for the first time in years and with the way taxes are going I'm going to avoid another diesel.
It wants to be stalking-friendly or course. Don't need 7 seats. Don't need four really, I could even take rear seats out. SWB would do as long as I can get a large carcase tray and two lots of kit in the back. Needs basic off-road ability, reliable with good running costs as there ain't much money - under 5K. It will go off-road quite a lot, especially in winter, so it needs to be up to it and not too prone to dissolving in the wet. Less concerned about road manners and comfort as long as its driveable and not stupidly thirsty.

Like the idea of a Jimny - cheap to buy and run, cheap tax, and I could get a nice low mileage one but is it just too puny to be useful?

Other ides are:

Subaru Forester
Rav 4
Honda CRV
Daihatsu Terios

I know its an old one but Opinions appreciated.

Subaru Forester Excelent
Rav 4 Excelent if you get the older 2.2Diesel with lockable dif
Honda CRV The ones I looked at you couldent lock the diff
Daihatsu Terios No idea
 

Jagdmatch

Well-Known Member
I wanted a petrol 4x4 and settled on a 4x2 2.2 skids yeti which will cover all of the non claggy stuff. I have a defender but the yeti is far more comfortable for longer journeys, carries a couple of fallow and does around 50 mpg. I did look at the Dacia which seemed ok on the basic scale.
 

Essex stalker

Well-Known Member
The older Vitara was great especially the V6 one. I recently brought one of the new Vitara's as I travel from Essex to Scotland to stalk so I need something that's not too bad on motorways etc. something that is comfortable but also has reasonable off road capability.
The new Vitara is not as good as the old one as it now doesn't have a separate hi low 4 wheel drive gear shift, its all electronic nowadays, saying that I haven't got it stuck yet but at the same time I haven't been anywhere too difficult either. Another downside is they no longer have a spare wheel just one of these electric pumps and a aerosol of glue!
 

Mackensen

Well-Known Member
I am on my fifth Subaru (legacy, outback and three foresters) in 25 years, done over 100,000 in them all and never paid for anything other than routine parts and service. Never had a major failure. My current forester (2008) has better ground clearance and entry/exit angles than its predecessor and on Grabber ATs will go anywhere you might sensibly want to go. Changed the last set at 31k with 4mm tread left. Manual with low ratio transfer is best, average about 30 mpg, 34 on a run.

my neighbour (farmer and stalking pal) has a Jimny and it is great, too, but a bit cramped and not very comfortable on a longer run. On the right tyres, it is also brilliant off road but really more of a local on/off road runabout than for longer stalking expeditions (e.g. here to borders or highlands etc) when the Forester excels with comfort, cruise control, climate control etc.

hope that helps!
 

Fursty Ferret

Well-Known Member
What's the best small petrol engine 4x4?
I'm without a 4x4 at the moment and I'm getting rid of my van and getting a car for the first time in years and with the way taxes are going I'm going to avoid another diesel.
It wants to be stalking-friendly or course. Don't need 7 seats. Don't need four really, I could even take rear seats out. SWB would do as long as I can get a large carcase tray and two lots of kit in the back. Needs basic off-road ability, reliable with good running costs as there ain't much money - under 5K. It will go off-road quite a lot, especially in winter, so it needs to be up to it and not too prone to dissolving in the wet. Less concerned about road manners and comfort as long as its driveable and not stupidly thirsty.

Like the idea of a Jimny - cheap to buy and run, cheap tax, and I could get a nice low mileage one but is it just too puny to be useful?

Other ides are:

Subaru Forester
Rav 4
Honda CRV
Daihatsu Terios

I know its an old one but Opinions appreciated.
One of these!

Other than the Jimny, it will **** all over the other options you mention for off road ability
 

countrryboy

Well-Known Member
It really depends wot u want to do with it?

Almost all those 4x4's have the pro's and cons so really depends wot u need space, ground clearnace, cheapness, comfort etc

The dacia's are surprisingly good for towing but usually only field gates and parking in verge's, Jimny's are also ok but murder on fuel and tiny tanks usually only get about 200-250 miles per tank.
Far better than their predessors the SJ 410/413 on road but lack the clearance off road they had but they were quite 'tippy' even without trailers.

It's really a shame suzuki don't still bring over the LWB version of the SJ/jimny's, had a lot more room in the back and would be ideal as a stalking bus, seen some relatively modern 1's in NZ a few years ago.

Problem is most of the 4x4's fairly bumps up the price, Jimny's used to be cheap but not now, sommetimes ur just as well with crap car u abuse and carry a tirfor winch with u.Biggest problem is geting decent AT tyres for 2wd wheel sizes.
Vast majority of FCvans are 2wd and i know plenty of cutters/harverters drivers/forestry workers that run 2wd vans and they're up rough tracks all the time
 

Kai

Well-Known Member
Suzuki Vitara their excellent off road , they have hi and low 4x4 selectable box , spares are cheap and their well made plus in diesel I'm getting about 45mpg and I'm not a slow driver regards Kai
 

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