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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I want a Rodeo, but I'm having trouble finding one I really like. I was wondering about other SUV's (Pathfinder, Cherokee, Montero, Durango, etc.). Also thinking about an AWD Astro or Safari van. Thought about an Outback, too. Thought about an AMC Eagle, but they're a little hard to find. What's a decent vehicle? Weigh in with your opinions. I only have $2000 to spend, and it (unfortunately) has to be an automatic.
 

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i have always liked the jeep Cherokee , only with the 4.0 liter engine , the engine/transmission are bullet proof , very easy to get parts for , they will go 200,000-250,000 miles , you will find a pretty good one for your 2k $, they are boxey looking , they have a timing chain ( not a timing belt ). it is one of the few suv's with a timing chain , thats very important.

its the only one on your list i would get. a rodeo would be next ( the rest i would forget ). parts are getting very harder to get for the rodeo's .

look for 1995 and above as they have the new freon in the ac , jeep has been making the cherokee with the 4.0 engine for ever, also pretty good mpg .

some on your list are front wheel drive which i would never get.
 

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5 th rodeo said:
i have always liked the jeep Cherokee , only with the 4.0 liter engine , the engine/transmission are bullet proof
Motor bulletproof, pretty much, trans, not so much. At least not the auto's after 1990, that's why alot of guys do the AW4 swap, the 42RE sucks.

5 th rodeo said:
look for 1995 and above as they have the new freon in the ac
Pre-93 vehicles still used R12, R134 was put in 93+ and all production of R12 in general stopped in 1995

5 th rodeo said:
jeep has been making the cherokee with the 4.0 engine for ever, also pretty good mpg .
Ya the 4.0 is a great engine but like any vehicle, it can get crappy gas mileage if it's not in top running shape, it's realistically close to most SUV's in it's class for MPG.

5 th rodeo said:
some on your list are front wheel drive which i would never get.
I didn't notice any FWD, the Outback and Eagle are AWD (I'm sure that's the Eagle's he was looking at), everything else is at least RWD if not AWD/4WD. In my opinion, all the vehicles on your list aren't bad, I would avoid the Durango myself out of everything listed and probably the Outback if your not very mechanically inclined. Also the Eagle like you said is hard to find and IMO you could do better and get something a bit newer with more room and probably less headaches. That leaves the Rodeo, Pathfinder, Montero, Cherokee and Astro. On the Astro, they come with a great drivetrain in the 4.3 V6 and 4L60E (or 700R4 in earlier years), have a ton of room and there are alot of upgrades out there for them, plus parts are cheap, BUT do you want to drive a van? I myself like the Astro's and the main weakness in them would be the rear axle but that can be upgraded and if you got the AWD version I'd eventually look into swapping in an S10 tcase to make it selectable 4WD. If the Astro doesn't work for you then any of the remaining vehicles are good, besides teh Rodeo, the rest all of great aftermarkets and parts are plentiful. The Rodeo's parts aren't HARD to find but aren't as plentiful as the rest. It all comes down to what you like and if you see something that grabs your eye and runs/drives good then go for it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
what I need:
auto trans
room for at least 4 people comfortably
reasonable mpg

what I want:
4wd or awd
not too many issues (I can handle them, I just don't want to)
like it to look decent

I also wondered about a Land Rover or a Wrangler.
still trying to decide if I want to drive a van, but it would fit the bill pretty well.
 

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Ummmmmm......a first gen Trooper with the Aisin auto? Or the 4L30 if nothing else.
 

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Pooch said:
I want a Rodeo, but I'm having trouble finding one I really like. I was wondering about other SUV's (Pathfinder, Cherokee, Montero, Durango, etc.). Also thinking about an AWD Astro or Safari van. Thought about an Outback, too. Thought about an AMC Eagle, but they're a little hard to find. What's a decent vehicle? Weigh in with your opinions. I only have $2000 to spend, and it (unfortunately) has to be an automatic.

what I need:
auto trans
room for at least 4 people comfortably
reasonable mpg

what I want:
4wd or awd
not too many issues (I can handle them, I just don't want to)
like it to look decent

I also wondered about a Land Rover or a Wrangler.
still trying to decide if I want to drive a van, but it would fit the bill pretty well.
ok,lets take these in order
pathfinder.probably have over 200k and be a 1996 or earlier.exhaust leaks.and auto trannies are pos
cherokee.will be beat to hell.good engine.crappy tranny.
montero.stay 1st gen,before 1992.will have alot of miles.remember,its a mitsubishi.timing belt is costly.
durango.for 2k? that is a shop bill aching to happen.
a van? that is doable for 2k. best chance in the bunch
landrover???? u have lost ur mind
wrangler.again.for 2k? maintenance,alot of it
if you can fine one under 2k,ford explorer sport 4x4.hard to find in a 5 speed,i look all the time.
or
mid to late 90 model blazer/jimmy.i am no chevy guy but pretty decent rides.
 

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Take Land Rover off your list. Parts are expensive and hard to find. Almost always have to order them from out of town here.
 

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You can't find many rodeo's round here for less then $2k that are in fantastic shape.

Wonder why a lot of you are having issues finding Rodeo parts; I'm not....that said, it's been quite some time, knocking hard on wood, since I've had to replace anything other then the alternator.

Cherokee's seem prone to transmission failures, as can be durango's, Durango's are guzzlers from my understanding.

I don't think you're going to find too many, if any at all, Subaru's in good shape for $2k or less.
 

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ok...

I've owned 2 Jeep XJ's both automatics with the 4.0 (as well as a YJ, and a ZJ), a couple Subaru's, and a have a bit of experience with the others you've listed. Out of this list (which is a good list, and all are good rigs but for your cash...you have select years that will work) I would pick the Cherokee, you will need to find one that is a 1991 or later. This will do a few things for you...

1. You'll have the better injection system with less BS to worry about.
2. You will have a solid front axle, no 2 piece vacuum crap...lol
3. Cherokee's after 91 equipped with an automatic and the 4.0 came with an AW4. Make sure to find an XJ with the towing package cause the AW4 has a reputation for running "hotter" than most (this way you'll get an upgraded tranny cooler) but even if you can't it's not a big deal.
4. Finding one with a towing package will get you a little better gear ratio as well.
5. Cherokee's are not "prone" to transmission issues in the auto's, Jeep GRAND Cherokee's have more of an "issue" with the auto trannie's but that's also due to running all the way up to 200K without proper maintenance.

For 2K you should be able to find a decent Jeep XJ Limited (giving you power everything, leather, and a "nicer" interior). If it were me...I would find a Jeep ZJ (Grand Cherokee). They have a better designed suspension, MUCH nicer interior, they have a bit more room, and they ride a HELL of a lot better for DD duty. Look for the V8, I had the V8...and I got 18 mpg on a regular basis...pushed 20 mpg on long freeway trips. If you find a Limited Jeep ZJ, you'll get a much nicer interior than anything else listed, you very possibly could get a nice big sunroof ;-), and you'll have awd for sure with a 50/50 split low range.

If the ZJ has higher miles like (170K or so) and it doesn't have any problems with the tranny or leaks it should be solid and good for at LEAST another 30K if not more. If it's gonna have issues it'll happen around 150-180K.

P.S. If you can find it...a 1996 or later Jeep Grand Cherokee has the best interior of the generation. It's about as modern as it gets without spending a ton. They're out there...just have to hunt for them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I really appreciate all the input. it's helping me narrow things down. so, the general consensus is to forget about a Durango? doesn't really break my heart, it was just a thought.
not a big fan of Troopers, but the later ones aren't too bad looking.
not sure if a Blazer is really my thing, either.
looks like most of the Outbacks I had in mind are about $4k ish, so no go.
there is another Eagle that just came up today. it looks good. maybe I should check it out.
Cherokee? hmm... maybe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
88BamaTrooper said:
Pooch said:
I want a Rodeo, but I'm having trouble finding one I really like. I was wondering about other SUV's (Pathfinder, Cherokee, Montero, Durango, etc.). Also thinking about an AWD Astro or Safari van. Thought about an Outback, too. Thought about an AMC Eagle, but they're a little hard to find. What's a decent vehicle? Weigh in with your opinions. I only have $2000 to spend, and it (unfortunately) has to be an automatic.

what I need:
auto trans
room for at least 4 people comfortably
reasonable mpg

what I want:
4wd or awd
not too many issues (I can handle them, I just don't want to)
like it to look decent

I also wondered about a Land Rover or a Wrangler.
still trying to decide if I want to drive a van, but it would fit the bill pretty well.
ok,lets take these in order
pathfinder.probably have over 200k and be a 1996 or earlier.exhaust leaks.and auto trannies are pos
cherokee.will be beat to hell.good engine.crappy tranny.
montero.stay 1st gen,before 1992.will have alot of miles.remember,its a mitsubishi.timing belt is costly.
durango.for 2k? that is a shop bill aching to happen.
a van? that is doable for 2k. best chance in the bunch
landrover???? u have lost ur mind
wrangler.again.for 2k? maintenance,alot of it
if you can fine one under 2k,ford explorer sport 4x4.hard to find in a 5 speed,i look all the time.
or
mid to late 90 model blazer/jimmy.i am no chevy guy but pretty decent rides.
just wanted to say this post was very informative and helpful.
not saying the rest weren't, but this grabbed me.
 

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jaydubya2003 said:
3. Cherokee's after 91 equipped with an automatic and the 4.0 came with an AW4. Make sure to find an XJ with the towing package cause the AW4 has a reputation for running "hotter" than most (this way you'll get an upgraded tranny cooler) but even if you can't it's not a big deal.
Pre-91 Cherokee's had AW4's too, and I was thinking about the ZJ's earlier, I was seriously looking into one before I got my Passport, I always liked them. The 42RE was crappy compared to the AW4, the 46RE was a nice trans, always like the 5.9 GC's! Honestly you can't go wrong with them, tons of aftermarket, parts readily available, stout motor, etc. Around here prices are inflated so a decent one is easily more than 2K. As for the Land Rover thing, they aren't known for being easily/cheaply maintained so if you get one make sure your prepared to do some work. I have never owned one personally but from people that have that aren't well off, they hate them. What vehicle stands out to you the most?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
what stands out the most? really, it's between the Rodeo, the Outback, and the Eagle. the outback seems to be out of my price range, so...
 

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If I had to pick between the Rodeo and Eagle it would be the Rodeo. More aftermarket (amazingly), more refined, more room, more towing, etc etc. If you get a 91/92 you get the GM 3.1 engine, parts are more readily available for that one. If you could find a ZR2 Blazer, that would be the hot ticket, but easily more than 2K.
 

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I'd forget about that wrangler too. If you are even able to find one for less than 2K, it wont be worst 2 chits.
 

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What are you going to use this for? how many folks are you hauling? off road? or dirt road? Just snow vehicle?
Yu have a wide variety of vihicles listed. some overlap on purpose more than others. If you just need all wheel drive transport for a couple of people for snow duty ect. Then throw a 1st gen Honda CRV on the list. The prices are coming down. They are great for FS roads and snow. They are comfortable, reliable, get decent milage.

Stay way far away from durangos. Any year thet are total pieces of poop! I bought new one and 10 months later it wasn't safe to drive and I'm still getting recal stuff on it years later. Every system on the truck had major out of the box problems. Old wranglers tend to be problematic.

Find a clean 1st gen Trooper and drive the wheels off of it.
 

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i will throw this one in there because i am looking at one of thse soon and i owned a 1998 2 years ago.
a Ford explorer 2 door sport 4x4.a 4 door may be more suitabe to your needs but my kids are grown so i dont need all the extra room of a 4 door.Mine was an automatic but they do make 5 speeds which is what I prefer.
this has really got me interested.
 
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