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What to look for in a 01-04

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by croberts20, Jan 19, 2011.

  1. Jan 19, 2011 at 8:22 AM
    #1
    croberts20

    croberts20 [OP] New Member

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    I am beginning the search for my first Tacoma. I have decided that I like the 01-04 model. I would like a 4x4, either SR5 or a TRD if the price is right. My question is what should I look for to make sure I am getting the best Tacoma for the price. I am looking for something for around 10k, thanks in advance for any info.
     
  2. Jan 19, 2011 at 9:13 AM
    #2
    MowTaco

    MowTaco Well-Known Member

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    The biggest deal now is the frame. Since the inspection deadline is passed, if it isn't already covered it won't be. If it is in bad shape (rust), skip it
     
  3. Jan 19, 2011 at 9:18 AM
    #3
    steve o 77

    steve o 77 braaap

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    yeah pretty much just the frame.

    Also you will not find anything 4x4 with under 100k miles for $10k just so you know. Don't worry though, as long as it has records of all maintenance it should be fine.

    Also make sure the T belt/water pump were replaced if its a v6 over 90k miles.
     
  4. Jan 19, 2011 at 9:20 AM
    #4
    CNEDEER

    CNEDEER If ya ain't first, your last!

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    The deadline was extended until March 31, 2011. I recently just purchased a 2002 Tacoma DC SR5 TRD and contacted toyota. They have put me in contact with a case manager as of now.
     
  5. Jan 19, 2011 at 9:25 AM
    #5
    CNEDEER

    CNEDEER If ya ain't first, your last!

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    As mentioned, make sure the water pump and timing belt has been replaced. Just depends on what your looking for(regular cab, extended, double). Itd be hard to find a 4x4 with under 100k for around 10k. My advice would be to search autotrader, cars.com, ebay, craigslist, and other car search engines to see what trucks are going for, that way you can get an idea. If you don't mind traveling, extend the search for a few hundred miles. Some times on Craigslist, you can catch a good deal when someone is in need of money and they will lower their price below market value for quick sale. I purchased a 2002 Double Cab SR5 TRD 4x4 with 118k miles for 11,600. Pretty good deal. These trucks are hard to find, but if you look hard enough and are persistent, eventually you will find what you are looking for! Hope this helps
     
  6. Jan 19, 2011 at 10:53 AM
    #6
    ezatnova

    ezatnova Artax

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    As a long time owner (2 days, and haven't actually picked it up yet!), everything here seems spot on as far as what to look for and what price to expect. It took me 3+ months to find the "right" truck, which sounds like it was exactly what you are looking for too (SR5/TRD/Xtracab/auto/around $10k).

    Scoured Craigslist, ebay, autotrader, etc. A couple warm leads but something was always amiss with the truck (needed $1-2k in repair, smoker truck, accident on record, etc). Finally found an '04 last week and was able to negotiate the dealer down to $11,3. 130k miles but looks nearly new inside and out.

    I will do water pump and timing belt asap...can't be sure it wasn't done yet, but there are none of the usual stickers that indicate it was done. Hopefully that's all it needs to be good to go!

    Frame looked decent...not a mess for sure. Regardless, it hasn't had the recall done yet, so I'll take it in in a week or so and have it checked and likely sprayed, and be all set.

    Also, double check the e-brake operation...most will likely be stuck a bit. My right side is...but it's dirt cheap and an easy fix.

    Other than that...drive it and if t has a CEL, find out if the it is on from an O2 (cheap) or cats (not cheap), ABS light (expensive actuator), and check the ability to go from 2Hi to 4Hi, and then to 4Lo, and finally the diff lock. I'd imagine problems with actuators, etc, there would be pricey too.
     
  7. Jan 19, 2011 at 1:01 PM
    #7
    ywen

    ywen Well-Known Member

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    How do check whether the ebrake is stuck a little bit?
     
  8. Jan 19, 2011 at 6:35 PM
    #8
    BoostingMS6

    BoostingMS6 Well-Known Member

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    Did you even post this in the write thread? :confused: How is this going to help the OP?
     
  9. Jan 19, 2011 at 8:28 PM
    #9
    Tacomadude89

    Tacomadude89 Well-Known Member

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    As other's have said, the frame is really the biggest thing specific to these trucks to pay attention to. A good thing to do would have it be inspected by a professional before you bought the truck. Other than that, if it is a v6, you will need to do the timing belt and water pump unless it has already been done.

    Keep in mind and I don't want to ruin it for you, but finding an '01-'04 style for around $10k will be pretty tricky to find in a 4x4. Around here they easily go from the mid teens on up to $20k. Your best bet would be to look for an older year, pre 01-04 style, if you're looking for one around the $10k range.
     
  10. Jan 19, 2011 at 8:33 PM
    #10
    PSUnick

    PSUnick Lets Go State!

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    link for details please
     
  11. Jan 19, 2011 at 10:36 PM
    #11
    shampoop

    shampoop Well-Known Member

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    It's a tall 4x4 truck, not a sports car. I never really wish my truck had more power. It's has a perfectly appropriate amount of power for what the truck is. Well, I actually would probably want more low end power if i had a power robbing, is never in the correct gear when going uphill, automatic.

    also to the OP: around here you can't even find a nice pre-runner for 10k regardless of mileage.
     
  12. Jan 19, 2011 at 10:43 PM
    #12
    steve o 77

    steve o 77 braaap

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    Not when you come from a POS GMC sonoma with a 2.5L I4 lol.
     
  13. Jan 20, 2011 at 10:09 AM
    #13
    ezatnova

    ezatnova Artax

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    Have someone pull the ebrake handle and release it, over and over. You get down under the truck in the back and shine a flashlight into the two wheel hubs. You SHOULD see the cables clearly clamp and unclamp, equally. When I tried this on mine, the right one barely moved...a sign it's bound up a bit. Apparently it is extremely common, and not a hard fix.
     
  14. Jan 20, 2011 at 3:56 PM
    #14
    EddieC

    EddieC Well-Known Member

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    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE link us to this info... I just joined the forum for it! I have not been able to find any frame rust deadline extension... thought I was SOL
     
  15. Jan 21, 2011 at 3:58 AM
    #15
    ezatnova

    ezatnova Artax

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    Doesn't it make you sick that idiots have time to make those scams to try and prey on people, on craigslist, with the $2999 fake trucks? If they spent as much time looking for a real job as they did on the scams, they'd do fine.
    Oh well, I do get some satisfaction out of messing with them, using a junk email address, or at the very least, clicking Prohibited and getting it removed.
     
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