1995 Daihatsu Rocky RV 2.8 intercooled turbo diesel from Australia and New Zealand


I bought it because it was cheap - will buy a Toyota next time


Where to begin?

Day 1 - Blown intercooler piping. Pipes are removed to fit the air conditioning, and had not been reattached properly.

Bad omen perhaps???

The gearbox was removed at 45,000km to attend to an oil leak. Faulty seal replaced.

The gearbox was removed again at 50,000km to repair the same oil leak.

55,000km - Oil leak reoccurs (AAAARRRRGGGGHHHH!!!!!) plus the bonus of a slipping clutch and a gearbox that jumps out of 1st gear low range. Difficulty in selecting second.

59,999 km - Daihatsu gets it's act together. Gearbox removed and stripped down. Faulty machining of the centre shaft is chewing out the oil seal. Slipping clutch is due to oil going everwhere. New clutch and pressure plate supplied. Faulty/off centre main bearing causing the gear cluster to wear on one side. New synchros and sliders/selectors plus gear cluster - a.k.s they replaced the gearbox and clutch.


But wait! There's more!

115,000 km - "Mystery" water leak. Engine loosing coolant - to parts unknown. Finally traced (after 10 days) to a blown/seperated head gasket.

115,001km - 3 days after the vehicle returns - clutch slip. Traced to a cracked pressure plate. New heavy duty clutch fitted (not factory replacement part).

Apparently Daihatsu fitted the intercooler to lower manifold temps and boost power - but forgot to look at the other end of things.

IFS suspension is basically off the Feroza. It works.


General Comments:

My beloved Rocky replaced a very well used and 100% reliable Suzuki Sierra. Yes I use my vehicles off road. No I don't thrash them. The Rocky spends 99% of the time on the express way cruising in 5th gear so I doubt that my off road excursions are the cause of my difficulties.

What's good? The engine is very efficient and has excellent power and torque on and off road.

What's bad? Dated design. Three doors are impractical. Bodgey interior aesthetics/rattles/squeaks. Off road chassis crossmember acts like a bulldozer. Don't try to fit a family in for a week long excursion - they won't fit!

BUT! Off road is where the Rocky makes up for its shortcomings. Mine is raised 1" and runs on higher rolling diameter tyres. Good in sand, great in mud.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 26th October, 2000