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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What's the story with these trucks? They look kinda cool, but seem to be pretty anonymous. Here are the questions:

1) Are they good reliable trucks?
2) What are the years / models / engine configurations to get?
3) What are the years / models / engine configurations to avoid?
4) What are the good years, and what's a good price for them?
5) Besides 4x4, what are the good options to look for?

Anything else I should know? I remember when they came out, but they're pretty rare so don't know much about them.

Thanks in advance for the advice!
 

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I bought an 02 XS in Oct 08 w/ 69k miles. Today said car has 165k. The reliability has been average and I really baby the car. Most of the Axioms have transmission problems. There is a know issue where the servo cover comes off and leaks out all the fluid. This happened to me around 101k. The transmissions never shifted right since. I can see a replacement tranny in my near future.

Things that have gone wrong in my 3 years of ownership that are not normal wear and tear:
-Servo Cover Broke off transmission ( $335)
-Rear Window Regulator($130)
-Alternator($300)
-Radiator($180)
-Replaced latch to exit door on driver side(forgot) ** the passenger side is starting to break too
-EGR Valve($120)
-Injector Seal came off( 2nd tranny problem) [$286]
-Clock/Compass will not set. [ yet to replace]

So I sum this up as average reliabilty. I still have my car dealer serviced and it is still in really good shape.

The 02 and 03 are the same mechanically, there were minor changes like trims and options etc. The 04 came with a new bigger engine(250hp vs 230hp) and exterior tweaks. I would opt for an XS model--leather,sunroof,6disc etc. I would purchase an AX again, pref an 02 since I know what to expect from the engine. I have driven almost 100,000k during my 3 years and my AX has never failed to start up each day :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hwy Ax-92,

Thanksfor the response to my question about the Axiom! It´s an interesting truck that,for various reasons, is available for a good price, and is obscure enough to keep my friends guessing!

Good info...especially about the known transmission issues!

I´ve recently pickup up a first gen Trooper, which I really like, but am also looking at something a bit more modern this spring. Two Isuzoo´s in the garage!
 

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As stated above from an Axiom owner.

I'll add that 2004 would be the best year to get. Look for the direct injection 3.5 with the asian automatic transmission (only available in 2004). All years prior came with 4l30 automatics which can be problematic. Personally I'd look for one with the leather interior too. Axioms had really nice leather seating and trim! They are a full frame vehicle built on the Rodeo platform so they are pretty tough. If you are in the snow belt, check the rear frame section for rust.
 

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Cronk said:
I'll add that 2004 would be the best year to get. Look for the direct injection 3.5 with the asian automatic transmission (only available in 2004). All years prior came with 4l30 automatics which can be problematic.
this is absolutely correct.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Cronk said:
As stated above from an Axiom owner.

I'll add that 2004 would be the best year to get. Look for the direct injection 3.5 with the asian automatic transmission (only available in 2004). All years prior came with 4l30 automatics which can be problematic. Personally I'd look for one with the leather interior too. Axioms had really nice leather seating and trim! They are a full frame vehicle built on the Rodeo platform so they are pretty tough. If you are in the snow belt, check the rear frame section for rust.
Very cool... good advice! I would get the leather trim for sure....at this point-why not?

Thanks for the advice guys...keep it coming!

So...2004 with 3.5 direct injection. Question...towing 3500 lbs occasionally is not a problem? More likely to be 2000 lbs worth of snowmobile trailer and small jet ski trailerin the summer. Naturally I´ll need 4 x 4 or at least AWD.
 

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993twin said:
So...2004 with 3.5 direct injection. Question...towing 3500 lbs occasionally is not a problem? More likely to be 2000 lbs worth of snowmobile trailer and small jet ski trailerin the summer. Naturally I´ll need 4 x 4 or at least AWD.
it is 4500 lbs rated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
holger said:
993twin said:
So...2004 with 3.5 direct injection. Question...towing 3500 lbs occasionally is not a problem? More likely to be 2000 lbs worth of snowmobile trailer and small jet ski trailerin the summer. Naturally I´ll need 4 x 4 or at least AWD.
it is 4500 lbs rated.
That´s plenty! I won´t be towing anywhere near that amount...
 

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Ramblin Fever said:
holger said:
it is 4500 lbs rated.
I figured it would be rated for more....IIRC that's exactly what my 97 rodeo is rated at.
The towing rating is limited mostly by the vehicle weight. The vehicles have approximately the same weight.
 

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My mom had an Axiom. It was a sharp car and got lots of looks. Personally, I didn't like it all that much. They don't look like an SUV to me. They look more like a crossover. I know they are body on frame so that's good but they just don't have that rugged look that I like.. personal opinion only though. Also they have a lousy angle of approach and probably the most god awful rear blind spot I've ever seen.
 

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stusvend said:
My mom had an Axiom. It was a sharp car and got lots of looks. Personally, I didn't like it all that much. They don't look like an SUV to me. They look more like a crossover. I know they are body on frame so that's good but they just don't have that rugged look that I like.. personal opinion only though.
I tend to value function rather than look. Functionally, the 2004 Axiom is may be the most rugged Isuzu ever. I would put only 2rd or 3nd generation Trooper with manual transmission on the same level of "ruggedness".

I do not see the vehicle when I am inside it, anyway, so I do not care how it looks.

stusvend said:
Also they have a lousy angle of approach and probably the most god awful rear blind spot I've ever seen.
There is no blind spot on this vehicle. Everything around is perfectly visible. I use it for 'wheeling and I would notice if there would be any.
 

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This rear-most pillar seemed to always be in the way when I drove it. It's quite thick and rounded on the inside of the vehicle too. I hated backing that thing up. I feel this feature was more about design than funtionality. Just my opinion though. To each their own.
 

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stusvend said:
This rear-most pillar seemed always be in the way when I drove it. It's quite thick and rounded on the inside of the vehicle too. I hated backing that thing up. I feel this feature was more about design than funtionality. Just my opinion though. To each their own.
OK... may be I am more relying on the side mirrors to view those areas. I am not using my internal mirror much, as I am usually having the vehicle full of stuff. I am not using the vehicle for commute, just for recreation. The side mirrors are great - properly located and of good size, so I have no problems with the blind spots in any conditions.
 

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I have no problem backing up either. Those side mirrors are huge... I've never almost hit anything b/c of myblid spots. Holger, do you take you car off-road? :cry: I see you said you use it for "recreation"...?
 

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ax-92 said:
Holger, do you take you car off-road? :cry: I see you said you use it for "recreation"...?
Yes, I do. There are plenty of off-road Axiom pictures on my travel site, check the "4x4" links: http://www.olegmoskalenko.com
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I tend to value function rather than look. Functionally, the 2004 Axiom is may be the most rugged Isuzu ever. I would put only 2rd or 3nd generation Trooper with manual transmission on the same level of "ruggedness". [/quote]

Really? I would not have thought the Axiom was very rugged at all! No reason why, it just looks like a crossover, which I don´t associate with ruggedness. I would think my 1st Gen would be more rugged?
 

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993twin said:
I would think my 1st Gen would be more rugged?
I do not want to go into "which truck looks cooler and more rugged" argument. This is silly. As I said, I do not care about the look.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
holger said:
993twin said:
I would think my 1st Gen would be more rugged?
I do not want to go into "which truck looks cooler and more rugged" argument. This is silly. As I said, I do not care about the look.
Not sure where you were coming from with that one...I didn't start any sort of "which truck looks cooler / more rugged" argument at all. I merely said that I didn't think the Axiom, looking more like a crossover, would in function be particularly rugged, and so I found that surprising. I did not doubt that...I merely found it surprising. You might have noticed that I ended my sentences with a question mark, which clearly is not a statement but a question.

Now that THAT has been clarified, as I am clearly considering an Axiom, let me rephrase that question without any sort of implication whatsoever so as to avoid misunderstanding: are they actually more rugged / tougher in function than my first gen?
 

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993twin said:
are they actually more rugged / tougher in function than my first gen?
1) My understanding is that the 1st gen Trooper body is more practical (I'd personally prefer a Trooper body). Also, the steering setup, I suppose, stronger on Troopers. The 12 bolt rear Trooper's diff may be a little stronger than modified rear Dana 44 on Axiom, but I have yet to hear about broken Dana 44 in an Isuzus.

2) As for the frame parts and the suspension parts, I guess most Isuzus have about the same strength. Axiom has longer front control arms, but 1st gen Trooper has probably better rear articulation than stock Axiom with stock rear upper control arm (the weak detail in 2gen Rodeos, Amogos and Axioms).

3) The auto transmission on 1st gen Troopers is "old" Aisin (as far as I know) and on the Axiom this is a "new" Aisin. Which one is stronger I do not know.

4) The engine is more powerful in Axioms.

I heard that the new frames are stronger than old Isuzu frames, but I am not sure about that.

I guess that the choice comes to the personal preferences and to the used vehicle market availability.
 
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