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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Disregarding price, and for the sake of argument, similar service histories and mileage, which of these three Troopers would you choose based on reliability, ease of maintenance, potential problems, etc ...

94 5-speed 3.2 engine, 123k
96 auto, 3.2 engine, 117k
02 auto, 3.5, 103k

All three are very clean.

Is the seemingly high failure rate of the later auto's enough of a reason to shy away from the 02? Is the auto in the 96 more reliable over the long haul? Of course, they are all used, so no guarantees.

I realize this is similar to my "trooper shopping on Monday" thread, but that seemed to become more focused on prices than the individual attributes of the vehicles.

Thanks!
 

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Bolt Action all the way Baby!
 

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CREEPER said:
The 94, cuz I HATE auto transmissions!!
x2

94 best year motor...93-95 3.2L seen them go 300k as well as the manual transmissions. if it ever puked, you can get any 2.6L trans and just swap bellhousings. HATE HATE HATE the 4L30E CAR transmission in the SUVs...not heavy duty enough. 4L60E was a better choice, but nooooooooooooooooooooooooo.....
 

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I'll break with the consensus! :mrgreen: I'd prefer the '02 due to OBD2 and simpler valve train design. I like the newer stuff.
 

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In order, best to worst. IMO

1.94, cause its a 5 speed
2.02, cause it's got the 6VE1 (can you say torque?), it's the newest, has the least miles, and it's OBD II.
3.96, auto (crap-tastic), but it's OBD II.

-Robert
 

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I think I have to go with the 02 with the auto. Its much newer and probably in better shape. I would be most especially concerned with the frame. It also has the larger engine which Is nice although for me its not the biggest thing. I know some 3.5s had oil burning problems and I do wonder if that is one of them. If it was though I would not be too worried,Id just keep oil in it. In fact,I would go find a RX7 at the wrecking yard and pull its oil level sensor off its oil pan,pull the pan off the Trooper,and with a little drilling and welding,would make a nice mounting hole for it at the right level and then wire up an indicator light.

My next choice (and its close) would be the 94 with the manual. Manuals have SO much less to go wrong. Still,the 02 is 8 years newer.
 

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X's 2 what mallen said. I think the oil issues were fixed by 02, and pretty sure it was the 3.2 that had the issue with oil consumption, not the 3.5. It also has less miles and if you started a routine service schedule as soon as you get it, you should be good to go as far as any tranny issues. With 103K its due for its first fluid change right now.

Second choice would be the 96 for the OBDII system plus that 3.2 did not have the oil issue and again if a regular service routine were started at purchase, the tranny should be fine.

Last choice would be the 94 but only based on OBDI rather than OBDII.

Frame condition and rust would be the deciding factor between the three though. All the newness in the world won't help a rotted frame.
 

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You say the 94 was a one person owner vehicle, funny as it seems, I"m always a bit leary of why someone would keep a vehicle for so many years then suddenly part with it.

Not all are reason to be skeptical, it's just I do find it odd sometimes.

Personally in regards to the fact you're financing this vehicle, which is all the more reason to keep the value of the vehicle higher to justify the payments, I personally would go for the newer trooper...bigger engine, better bb value at this point.

I wouldn't pay more then $1,500 for the 94, I don't care what kind of shape it's in...that's a 17yr old vehicle...if you can get it for that price, I say go for it....but been there, done that, I"m not financing a 17yr old truck.

The value of the 5-spd over the automatic doesn't justify the purchase price of the 94 unless it's dirt cheap.
 

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I drove a 95 3.2 troop while my 88 was waiting to get put back together...Its such a great engine!! so I would go for the 3.2 with manual
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
johnnie59 said:
Frame condition and rust would be the deciding factor between the three though. All the newness in the world won't help a rotted frame.
That is the joy of Arizona, rust is not an issue, and all three have been in AZ all their lives.

I am probably going to go with the 02, although if I can gather all the cash and make a deal the 94 is very tempting. One owner, dealer maintained and you can tell it has been cared for all 17 years provides confidence -few people keep a car that long.

I didn't have a single problem with my 99, but it seems the auto tranny in the 00-02 is a problem and I don't want to buy into a transmission rebuild. Test driving it there is no slippage or other issues I can detect, TOD works as it should, engages into 4lo. And sadly, but honestly, the 02 is the only one with the fabulous moonroof.

I am coming from a 91 Land Cruiser, the epitome of reliability, but also of gas consumption. I want another Trooper because: of my previous experience, almost as much space as the LC, off-road capability, comfort and nearly 2x the gas mileage (LC gets 8-9 in town, 11 or so highway ... My 99 routinely gave me 15 town, 18,19 highway.)

Thanks, keep the insights coming ...
 

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definitley go with the 94.. the 3.2 is a great engine, and less to go wrong if its obd1. and the mua-5 is absolutely bulletproof. my 95 trooper 5 spd might be a POS, but it has never left me stranded.
 

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Enemigo said:
When I was into tuning import cars, OBD-II was to be avoided. Why is it sought after in these trucks?
So if there is a problem, you can read the codes. The readers for OBD-II are cheaper and easier to get than OBD-1. Locally, if you can find someone with an OBD-1 reader, they want $25 to read it.
 

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Oh, and I forgot to mention that the OBD-II connector is pretty much universal, while the OBD-I is brand specific. Another reason why they are expensive.
 

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isnt it true that obd2 isuzu's have 4 o2 sensors, while obd1 has only 1?
while i do agree that its nice to be able to go down to advance and have your codes read for free, id still perfer the simplicity of obd1
 

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I prefer the simplicity of OBD I. If you have a shop manual that explains what the codes are, no need for a code reader on a 94. There is a three pin connector in the center console, jumper the 1 and 3 pins and the check engine light blinks the codes.
 

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BigSwede said:
I prefer the simplicity of OBD I. If you have a shop manual that explains what the codes are, no need for a code reader on a 94. There is a three pin connector in the center console, jumper the 1 and 3 pins and the check engine light blinks the codes.
Does that apply to the 93's as well? (I hope, I hope, I hope......)
 
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