I bought this van for $1400 from a man who abused it by hauling tires in it. This caused awful stains on the carpet along with a bad odor. Replaced the carpet.
The speedometer/odometer was broken when I bought it. This was due to the cable socket being worn out. Fixed by inserting the cut off end of a small zip tie in with the cable. The mileage is probably at least 15,000 mile off.
The previous owner had replaced the engine with a used one of unknown mileage.
The gas quantity indicator never worked when I got it due to the sending unit being broken. Replaced it.
The fuel pump went out. Replaced it.
The engine is under the front seats and it would get hot due to the air coming in through the cable holes which didn't have grommets installed. Sealed with high temp silicone RTV.
Only the high beams worked when I bought it. Found broken solder joint on turn signal wire terminal.
The front air conditioner never got cool. Found the temp control panel to have all of the plastic levers broken behind the dash so the heat was always on. Replaced.
The front brakes and rotors had to be replaced.
The steering wheel had excessive play in it. Found the steering arm had a worn out ball joint. Replaced. Also had to adjust the steering gear box adjustment screw. This made it turn on a dime.
Although the drivers seat is torn in the center, the upholstery is holding up well for it being almost 20 years old.
The power steering pump had oil seeping into the alternator which caused me to replace the alternator. Since it didn't even leak enough from the "MAX" to the "MIN" on the dipstick in 3 months, I just fabricated a catch for the oil which diverts it away from the alternator.
There is some body corrosion around the right rear window frame.
There are other smaller things that have gone wrong, but were easy to fix. These are too numerous to list.
I never wanted a min van until we had our first baby. I bought this van and when I brought it home, my wife wanted to cry because it looked so awful. I worked very hard on scrubbing it up and cleaning it while I also fixed the broken items. Once I got all these things fixed up the van looked almost like new and my wife has been well pleased with it.
This van seems to have more cargo room than any of the new ones and it gets great gas mileage! I look at vans every where I go and I can't understand why they don't make these vans any more. In my opinion, this is the best vehicle I've ever owned. It's totally reliable! When I don't use it a van I use it like a truck. I've loaded it up with my heavy 1,000 lb toolbox plus tools, helped people move their furniture, loaded up more people than it's supposed to carry, used the rear seats which fold into a bed to sleep on, used it as a nursery with our baby (just remove the rear seats and close the doors-but don't go leaving the baby), and the list goes on.
Every time I see one of these vehicles for sale, I'm tempted to buy another one. I've thought of selling my Tercel and just have two of these awesome vans.
When other people who own newer mini vans ride in it, they always remark how nice it looks and especially how roomy it is. It's also very nice that when you sit in it, you sit about the level of these SUV's that you see all over the place.
I hope to keep this thing running for the rest of my life if I can. It has no equal (not even the Nissan or Mitsubishi look-a-likes). I remember seeing these all over the place back when I lived in Germany for 3 years, but I didn't remember until I bought one. I sure wish I would have bought a new one back then.
If you are looking for vehicle that is a good people mover, a good hauler, and is very economical, this is it.
I don't have anything negative to say about this van. It's one of the first one's made of this model and is 20 years old (it was built in 1983 and sold as an 84' model), it was abused by other owners, but despite this it does everything and more that these newer gas guzzling, overpriced vans do, but without the payments!