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 07-11-2005, 17:33 Post: 113303
kwschumm



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My wife needs a new SUV and I am torn between the truck-based SUV's (4Runner, Explorer, Pathfinder, etc) and the car-based ones (Rav4, Highlander, Pilot, etc). She has to drive a rough gravel road 10 miles a day. Would the car-based unibody type vehicles hold up to this punishment? We want something that will comfortably seat 4 but still get decent mileage. Anyone have long term experience with unibody SUVs on rough roads?






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 07-11-2005, 17:38 Post: 113305
DRankin



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I have driven both in Alaska (and family members still do) and never saw any difference in the longevity.

The only significant difference I can see between the two styles is the towing capacity. Most uni-bodies are really not rated to tow more than a token trailer.






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 07-11-2005, 17:45 Post: 113308
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I'm asking because our Taurus has suffered several broken body welds due to the vibration. It's unibody, and apparently flexes a great deal.






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 07-11-2005, 17:52 Post: 113312
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 SUV Body-on-frame or unibody

Sorry. I was talking about Nissan's, Mazda's and Toyota's.

Different league I think.






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 07-11-2005, 18:04 Post: 113313
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Suv's are rarely truck based any more. Look at a new explorer or any of them. Independent suspension all the way around. But all of them will hold up pretty well because of this. There is less flex in the chassis and more in the wheel area.






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 07-11-2005, 18:43 Post: 113314
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Ken, I would strongly suggest taking a look at the Jeep Renegade CRD. It comes with a 2.8 liter diesel which will get your outstanding mileage and from what I hear, the Renegade has a decent reliability reputation. They are not huge land yachts but are compact as well as 4 door and easily accomdate 4 to 5. If I can get 24 to 26 mpg with my Dodge Cummins, I would think you would get at least 30 mpg and more like 40.






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 07-11-2005, 19:03 Post: 113316
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Randy, do you mean the Liberty CRD? I looked at those, and there are a few things about them that put it further down my desireable list. For one, they have a rocking sort of a ride where it rocks front-to-back. The CRD isn't discounted like the gas versions, and the payback just doesn't seem to be there for the price premium. The gas engines get terrible mileage for such a small vehicle and the CRD mileage is reported as being disappointing - less than you get with your Cummins in fact.






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 07-11-2005, 19:06 Post: 113317
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oneace, maybe I shouldn't have said "truck based", rather body-on-frame as in the subject line. Although Edmunds does refer to the Explorer and 4Runner as truck-based SUVs. A V6 Explorer would be perfect for her, and they are heavily discounted now, but I'm having a real hard time with the idea of buying another Ford.






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 07-11-2005, 19:11 Post: 113318
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Ken, my CRS has confused my CRD's! Laughing out loud! Maybe you have read better info. than I have. I lot of folks over on TDR are drooling over them. I am disappointed in that they do not come with a manual transmission option. I was not aware that the their mileage was so poor. I find it tough to see how a diesel half the size of my Cummins pushing less than half the weight could get anywhere near the mileage my Cummins gets. The Volkswagen TDI's I hear are getting between 40 to 50 mpg if you go really easy on them. I have been watching and waiting to get more buyer review info. on the LIBERTY (got it this time ;O) CRD to see how they hold up for the long term. I still think they would be a good option unless they are just a total lemon. The engine I heard although being Italian built is supposed to be a subsidiary of Detroit Diesel. When our Ford Taurus craps out; I will be replacing it with a diesel of some kind.






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 07-11-2005, 19:28 Post: 113320
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What about a GMC Envoy? They are also going very well $$ wise. Or an AWD Chrysler Pacifica? They use almost all Benz- components and get good mileage. They too are being discounted.






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