Jack of all trades, master of none
My starter went at 320000 kms.
Transmission rebuilt at 100000 kms with radiator installed.
Thermostat housing leaked at 340000.
Exhaust manifolds have a mild leak.
Auto door locks are seized up. This is an inconvenience, but nothing serious.
There is lots of rust on the frame and body, but overall it still looks good.
This SUV is unbelievably reliable and cost effective.
Its engine is very strong, and it retains its compression well.
Compared to new vehicles, the power/fuel consumption is poor, but for its year, it is great.
It can take serious abuse at a variety of levels, and does not give up. It is designed and built for a wide scope of driving activity. I have 4x4ed through mountains, trails, mud, and cold winters too. I use my car as a daily commuter, and it works great at hauling loaded trailers and doing renovations as well. It is also great for camping, as you can fit all the kids in, and if you really want, you can sleep in it too.
Most of the bigger mechanical issues that you may run into (front axles, water pump, exhaust, steering) are cheap to resolve, and are not difficult for the home mechanic.
If you change the oil, and keep on general watch for worn belts, coolant leaks, tranny fluid levels, low brake pad levels, and shocks, she will go forever. Rust is the biggest enemy for my car, but other than that, she will drive forever.
It's not a high performance machine, but it is practical, versatile (highway, snow, mountains), cost effective, and all around Japanese engineering!
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 2nd September, 2010