I want a cheap 4X4 that's cheap to run, reliable, that'll tow the boat up the slipway and something that the wife will drive.
Too crap, too old, too much money. So far I've looked at Frontera's, Suzuki's, Diahatu's and today a "Kia" Sportage.
Anyone got any info on the Kia Sportage as I happened on it this afternoon by accident and it looks to be a nice little car. Just right size, good condition, right price and the wife might actually drive it.
Anyone like to comment as I'm getting desperate in a bid to be able to launch and recover by one's self, without getting stuck on the slip again.
The Sportage is quite popular over here and has fair reputation, they are constructed on a form chassis and have old fashioned but reliable mid section for the 4X4 which is good for towing purposes. They are coming out finally with new body end of this year which may lower the price of secondhand, I know there are many over here have ordered the new body so that should be some kind of recommendation.
Why don't you look at NIVAs. I know they are basic (VERY!!) but they are great towing vehicles. We bought two 2nd hand in Greece in April (one has air con!!) they work everyday, and they do a supper job without any problem what so ever.
Thanks Bogi and Manos, for some reason their not that popular here in the UK. You can't even get an aftermarket DIY manual for one! Have read the reveiws and seem to come tops for reliability and have very low insurance, they do however drink the "gas" at 25MPG but then so do most 4X4's.
Will have a second look at it tomorrow (when it's not raining), I hae read that the Engine is Toyota and that the European ones were built at the Karmann factory in germany!
Will update tomorrow.
If anyone else has info on the Kia, please tell me I'm not making a mistake!
PS. Manos we don't seem to have many Niva's in the UK now, couldn't cope with our Wet, humid weather and rotted away.
Andy, have you considered a Daihatsu Fourtrak 2.8 Turbo Diesel? I have an F Reg model that quite happily travels to & from Pompy regularly (albeit at 60mph - any quicker and you can't hear yourself think )
Built like the proverbial outhouse, very strong & powerfull. Also quite basic so easy to maintain (no fancy ECM involved ) The missus would like it for Tesco shopping - never had any arguments as to who is having the last parking space with ours .
If you fancy a look, let me know and perhaps we can meet up when I'm next in Pompy.
Peter (nick, nick) T
Age and treachery will always overcome youth and skill! Bullshit and brilliance only come with age and experience.
Tried one of these when looking for my jeep,opening the tailgate with a trailer attached could be interesting,what put me off in the end was the weedy towing weight(although I was looking at the unbraked figure).Very cheap for a newish car but the ride wasnt fantastic to start with so with a trailer atached....,also quite slow and 25mpg quoted.
Are you sure I cant sell you my cherokee
I have been looking at Subaru legacy estates,not tried one yet but should give car type ride,maybe the 2.2 non turbo so more low end grunt,pretty quick,25mpg,loads of space,not going to use it offroad so ground clearance not too important.
Thanks everyone for your advice. In the end it came down to a Suzuki LWB 2.0 V6 and the Kia 2.0 16V. Had a real good deal for the Suzuki and was more car like handling than the Kia, but in the end the Kia had a better body (despite being 1 year older) and the room inside was much better than the Suzuki despite the cars being of similar size (Suzuki body kit). Hope I don't live to regret my desition but I did take the Kia for a short trip across the beach at Lee just to test the 4WD and it seemed OK.
Yeh Bogi, that's what I'm gonna do with my Kia. Jack it up put some overgrown boots on and some funky wheel arch extentions. Might make driving down my road interesting, I'll just use the parked cars either side as a test track for the suspention.
A little late to offer an opinion here I know but ah well. A surprisingly good small 4x4 is the Daihatsu Terios. A neighbour of mine has one and it's amazing what the thing will cope with. It deals with river crossings and driving up and down a steep, rocky, very messed up farm "track" day in day out. I've been left with it in the past when we've been house sitting, and it really is amazing what it can drive up/down/through. Get one of the larger engine models and it should be decent for towing too. Cheap as far as 4x4s go as well.