2000 Toyota Harrier 3.0 Four 3.0 V6 VVTi

Summary:

An almost perfect car - if it had better quality

Faults:

Engine was sluggish and leaking slightly when I first purchased it. Had to do a full tune-up, clean the injectors, rinse the fuel tank, change all fluids & filters, and replace the gaskets.

Front doors' latches couldn't detect if either door is open. Integrated latch assembly means a lengthy ordering time and expensive work. Had an experienced electrical mechanic to open their housings and fix the internals.

Shrieking noise from below the car which was concluded to be a normal over-revving symptom by a Toyota mechanic. Had the car checked by an exhaust specialist and turned out to be a clogged catalytic converter (due to inconsistent fuel quality in Indonesia). Replaced it with a free-flow spool (greater emissions, but more power & overall Km/Lt).

Air-con motors within the dash make whirring noises every now and then. This problem is still present as no one has come up with a convincing solution.

Clunking noises from the front suspension or steering assemblies during slow & inclined cornering. No one could determine the cause.

Squeaks from the rear hatch area and rear seat bolts. Rectified the latter but not the former which is still untraceable.

General Comments:

In my quest for better comfort and space, I replaced my Suzuki Swift with this used Toyota Harrier. I've fulfilled my goals, but am now concerned with its questionable long-term quality. Being a grey-import doesn't help with parts availability either (although most fast moving parts are relatively easier to find, since those are common with Camry's).

Power is good, fuel consumption is acceptable for what it is (3 liter SUV) and the ride is pleasant. Space is abundant. Bonus for the "Four" / 4WD model is the ample grip on wet roads. Naturally, fuel consumption is slightly worse compared to the FWD model.

Its looks have aged somewhat when compared to the newer generation Harrier's but this has been helped a lot with the addition of aftermarket lights and 20" wheels.

I've been keeping up with repairing its minor faults, with many DIYs but don't know whether I'd still have the patience to do so after a couple of years. So I hope this car can behave well from now on, since I'd like to keep it for quite some time. Otherwise, I'm replacing it with something more reliable.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th August, 2008

19th May 2009, 12:27

Am having hard starting after packing car for some time. Also sometimes I lose accereration unless I press hard on the pedal in which case the car goes back to 1st gear. Any suggestions on what could be wrong? I don't wish to sell the car yet as it is very comfortable and good road holding.

27th May 2009, 00:44

Try to check your battery for sufficient current. Can you hear the starter motor running? If you do then you may want to check the ignition.

There are workshops out there capable of diagnosing the Harrier using their portable/handheld computers. How long has it been since your last tune-up? Let me know of your email if you want to discuss this further.

27th Nov 2009, 06:40

Toyota Harrier is an excellent car as far as comfort, space, road holding and power is concerned.

I however wonder why most of them that I have seen have some light on the dash board showing as if the tail light is on.

What does this light mean?

6th Jul 2011, 18:22

In my car, it means a tail light or brake light bulb has blown.

7th Sep 2014, 18:27

Yes, I just bought a 3.5 4WD 2006. On the rev counter dial there is a permanent orange light symbol like a fog light. I can't find the meaning or source of it. TPH, NZ.

26th Sep 2014, 23:19

That is most probably your rear fog lamps, as I have the same switch on my Harrier.