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Old 12-29-2015, 12:00 AM #1
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GX470 as First Car

So I am shopping for my first car and I have my heart set on a 4th gen 4Runner. I've been looking for a long time and my area seems to be in a 4Runner drought (ones with 4WD at least). I then saw the GX470s. Do these make good first cars like 4Runners? Are they as reliable and do parts and manteinance cost more? I don't plan on doing off-roading so that isn't really a factor.


My budget is 15000 and that price would get me an 04-06 with 110k-150k miles on it. That's about the same as a 4Runner except a model year or two lower. Are there any reasons to avoid these years/mileages? Given the opportunity, would you take a 470 or 4Runner?

Sorry for these questions. I just can't find much info on used 470s. Everything seems to be on the luxury and modern aspect of the car.

Thanks! - Kris
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Old 12-29-2015, 12:21 AM #2
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I've found that oftentimes the GX is cheaper than a 4runner of same year and mileage(v8 4runner), as Toyota owners don't care as much about having the newest version... Where Lexus owners tent to be a little more "trendy" and don't want to look outdated...

We picked up our GX last year for $13.5k with 130k on it, I couldn't touch a v8 4runner with that kinda mileage for under $18k... Sure I had to put $2000 into it within a week as the ECU shorted out due to water damage, but still even $15.5k I'm still way under the 4runner costs, and the interior is much nicer and roomier.

Parts are no more than a 4runner if you know what parts crossover -the GX and 4runners are on the same platform and share the same motor and drivetrain.
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Old 12-29-2015, 12:42 AM #3
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I know they're built on 4Runner frames so I was just wondering. Also, I'm assuming the mpg is the same as a V8 Runner, so 15-19. I'm expecting 16 ish, good thing gas here in SC is some of the lowest in the country haha
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Old 12-29-2015, 12:50 AM #4
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One more thing.

So the old Lexus' required premium fuel. If I was to get one that was out of warranty (130k miles), is it possible to tune the engine to normal fuel? Is using normal fuel regardless ok? It doesn't really make sense to me, since it uses pretty much the same engine as a V8 4Runner, but I'm not a mechanic. Thanks!
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Old 12-30-2015, 01:14 PM #5
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Normal fuel is fine on the 4.7, vvti or not. I get about 18-20 mpg on the highway with 285's and 13-16 around town.

I'd search for an 05+ with no navigation if you can. These trucks are a much better overall bang for your buck than the 4th gen 4Runner, no brainer on that subject.
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Old 12-30-2015, 07:01 PM #6
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We've run regular on my parents' 2007 (vvti) from day one, no issues. They previously leased a 2004 (non-vvti) and that ran on regular too.
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:40 AM #7
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I own an 05 gx and an 07 4runner. the two trucks are identical in the way of drivetrain, chassis, etc... there is actually very little difference. where they differ is all the things that makes the lexus more desirable. so if you had your hear set on a 4runner, get a GX and you will love it. understand that the gx has an air bag rear suspension with electronically controlled shock that are expensive to replace to retain that (Lexus ride). but you can easily swap out for a standard aftermarket 4runner suspension if you are at all handy.
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Old 01-14-2016, 09:13 AM #8
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My mom had an 06 GX. Great truck. Mileage wasn't the greatest but it was mostly city driving. Also used regular fuel with no ill effects. Seemed to get better mileage with the premium fuel though.

One thing to be aware of, I'm assuming this applies to those gen. 4Runners too, there's an issue with the prop shaft clunking/thumping. There's a TSB out regarding replacement of it. Might want to make sure this has been done/is not an issue on whatever vehicle you decide on.

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Old 01-22-2016, 11:29 AM #9
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Me personally, I would get a non VVTI, non nav, non KDSS equipped GX if I could find one. The VVTI isn't at all noticeable to me, I've driven both. Non nav leaves and endless supply of aftermarket awesomeness available. KDSS is nice, but EXTREMELY expensive to fix *if* something were to go wrong, leaves less aftermarket options open for sliders, skids, and other cool stuff. While options are nice, my mindset is even though it's a Lexus and will be extremely dependable, they're still getting up there in age and most at some point will need repairs. Non VVTI trucks don't have secondary air injection pumps, which are a known point of failure and extremely expensive to fix if you choose not to bypass it.

And again, it's my opinion only, but I wouldn't even consider one with tan interior. Tan interior seems to wear so much worse than the grey. Except for @Scat Adams truck, I'd buy that one in a heartbeat, lol.
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Last edited by BlackCat914; 01-22-2016 at 11:34 AM.
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Old 01-22-2016, 11:38 AM #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackCat914 View Post
Me personally, I would get a non VVTI, non nav, non KDSS equipped GX if I could find one. The VVTI isn't at all noticeable to me, I've driven both. Non nav leaves and endless supply of aftermarket awesomeness available. KDSS is nice, but EXTREMELY expensive to fix *if* something were to go wrong, leaves less aftermarket options open for sliders, skids, and other cool stuff. While options are nice, my mindset is even though it's a Lexus and will be extremely dependable, they're still getting up there in age and most at some point will need repairs. Non VVTI trucks don't have secondary air injection pumps, which are a known point of failure and extremely expensive to fix if you choose not to bypass it.

And again, it's my opinion only, but I wouldn't even consider one with tan interior. Tan interior seems to wear so much worse than the grey. Except for @Scat Adams truck, I'd buy that one in a heartbeat, lol.
To expand on this. Black Cat is exactly right if you are a highmileage, drive it past 300k miles, mod it to the hilt kind of guy. However, if you are a grocery getting, daily driver, just want a nice car kind of person then I would want all of these things. But i have run into very many of these on this forum.
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Old 01-22-2016, 12:00 PM #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morphyne View Post
To expand on this. Black Cat is exactly right if you are a highmileage, drive it past 300k miles, mod it to the hilt kind of guy. However, if you are a grocery getting, daily driver, just want a nice car kind of person then I would want all of these things. But i have run into very many of these on this forum.
Ya, all depends on what he wants to do with the truck. After driving a million of them, (I now have a friend who wants one after seeing mine), I don't think that KDSS and VVTI options are worth it strictly from a future repair standpoint. I work on luxury cars all day long, and they can be very expensive to fix. So I'm clearly biased. Some people love those options and want them.
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Old 01-22-2016, 01:34 PM #12
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That's why I love the GX. It's basically a fancy 4runner. Perfect example. Quote from Lexus to do the water pump and timing belt? $1600. Quote from Toyota on the same vehicle? $1100
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Old 10-15-2016, 07:07 PM #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Morphyne View Post
That's why I love the GX. It's basically a fancy 4runner. Perfect example. Quote from Lexus to do the water pump and timing belt? $1600. Quote from Toyota on the same vehicle? $1100
Unreal!
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