Monday, September 5, 2016

Quickie Used Car Review - Toyota Fortuner (2005-2015)

2005-2015 Toyota Fortuner

The Good: Wide variety of engines and examples in the market, durable

The Bad: Some unrefinement, 2.5 non-VNT lacks oomph

The Say: Despite the influx of new competitors, the Fortuner is a great buy in the market.

Go For: 3.0 V
Avoid: 2.7 G

Price Range: P550,000-P1,250,000
Our Rating: ****

Full Review: Used Car Review - Toyota Fortuner (2005-2015)
Latest vehicle profile: Toyota Fortuner

See the different versions of this vehicle:
2011-Current non-VNT/VNT

Vehicle Overview
The third member of the IMV platform family is the Fortuner, which was released after the Hilux pick-up and the Innova MPV for the Philippine market. The SUV is offered in most world markets except North America, Japan, China, and Europe.

With its 10 year run, the Fortuner had been a subject of numerous exterior and interior updates to keep this vehicle fresh. 2005 to 2011 models have chrome door handles and side mirrors while 2012 and later ones have side mirror signal repeaters and for 2015 (sold from September 2014), gunmetal alloy wheels come standard. A hood scoop is standard for all 3.0 V models and later on, for 2.5 diesels sold from August 2012 which signaled an engine update that added VNT engine technology. Optional TRD body kits with suspension upgrades and alloy wheels became standard for selected variants in December 2009.

Available engine options throughout selling life are the following: a 2.7 gasoline engine that is smooth and has lots of reserve power, a 2.5 diesel with 102hp which is good enough for city driving but you will complain for lack of power when doing long drives, the same 2.5 engine but carrying 142hp that does better in all aspects, and a 3.0 diesel whose power is reachable in the early range. When it comes to driving, steering is light which is an advantage and braking is fine but one criticism is the jittery ride whose culprit is the suspension and is reworked numerous times for a smoother ride. Despite the reworked suspension, we'd remind you this is a truck based vehicle so don't expect much.

If you own an Innova or a Hilux, then you would be familiar with the dashboard layout since they are similar to one another although the main difference is that the air-conditioning unit is an automatic type as opposed to its cousin's rotary type. Spacewise, the cabin will welcome anyone but the third row is best left for small people and when it comes to stowing, it can be folded sideways. Throughout the years, the interior had been updated with additional equipment to reflect market trends.

What Should I Get
All G models either get a 158hp 2.7 gasoline (2005-2015), 102hp 2.5 diesel (2005-2012), or 142hp 2.5 diesel (2013-2015) paired to either an automatic or manual (2.5 diesel only, offered from October 2009) transmission. From launch, G models came with dual airbags, ABS brakes, fog lamps, CD player with MP3 function, alarm, keyless entry, and side step board with leather seats, rear manual aircon (added in September 2006), rear parking sensors (March 2008), auxiliary jack, steering wheel controls (September 2008), power folding mirrors (August 2011), DVD system, and Bluetooth (August 2012). Items previously available with the G that were added either in 2011 or 2012 such as headlamp washers, auto leveling headlamps, HID headlamps, and leather seats and navigation system for the automatic models were removed in September 2013 and it was the basis of the 2.5 V launched in the same month.  The top end 3.0 V adds a 163hp 3.0 engine, power driver's seat, power fold mirrors (September 2009), and Bluetooth (August 2011) plus it has a 4WD system unlike the 2.5 and 2.7 which are rear wheel driven.

How Much Would It Cost Me
Among rivals, this would prove to be cheaper to maintain and spare parts are available widely. When it comes to fuel consumption, the diesels are much better than the 2.7 gasoline. This vehicle became a subject of a recall in April 2014 which involved a faulty spiral cable that may cause the airbag not to deploy in a crash which involved units built from 2005 to June 2010. Other things to look for are the rear drum brakes especially if the previous owner is heavy footed, if the manual transmission shifts smoothly, EGR valve for the diesels if they are exposed to low quality fuel, and for early releases of the 2.5, the suction valve tend to get stuck due to poor quality fuel. Since there are a lot of units on sale, do take time to inspect and be picky.

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