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Old 06-11-2007, 07:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Getting ready to purchase my first taco, few tech Q's...

Looking at a '97 Taco reg. cab short bed, 4wd, 2.7L, 5spd, 148,000mi.

First off, the 2.7L, is it a derivative of one of Toyota's older 4cyl engines, or was it the first in that engine line? Any known issues with these motors I should look out for?

Secondly, is there anyway I can tell by externally looking at the engine if the timing belt has been changed, i.e. certain new gaskets, etc?

Thirdly, are there any other known issues with these trucks that I should look for when checking the truck over?

Lastly, about what is this truck worth, its in immaculate shape, no rust, drives great, would $7500 be about right?

Thanks for any info, sorry if this is a bit newbish but I'm new to the Toy world. More questions might be forthcoming.
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Old 06-11-2007, 07:41 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The 3RZ (2.7L) is a damn good engine- it has a timing chain, not a belt, so that's a plus. One of the main issues I can think of off the top of my head is the blocks that the chain runs on wearing out, but a new timing set would fix that, if it's an issue. I have one in my truck (01, so it has the distributorless ignition, the 97 will have a distributor) with 70k on it, and no problems except a blown crank seal from a particularly nasty mud dunking.

The price sounds high, even for a nice truck- I only paid $12k for mine in early 04, and it's an extended cab. KBB is about $5500. At least it should have manual hubs, right?
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Old 06-11-2007, 08:11 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Bought my '97 standard cab last year for $6500 at 120k miles

Locotaco85 got the rest of them
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Old 06-11-2007, 08:41 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks for the info. I'm going tomorrow to give it a good look over (bringing my tools and creeper), and if all looks good I might buy. I'll see if I can work the price down a bit, $6500 seems to be a little closer to par for a 10yr old truck.

What kind of highway MPG can I expect, 20+ I would assume?
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Old 06-11-2007, 09:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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What kind of highway MPG can I expect, 20+ I would assume?
I get about 23 (31" tires, 3.58 gears )
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Old 06-12-2007, 07:39 AM   #6 (permalink)
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The 2.7 is a great engine as long as you aren't planning on racing it. As long as the maintance has been kept up on it, it should last a for many more miles.

Things to look for are just basic stuff, make sure the wheel bearings feel good pinion bearings feel good , 4wd is smooth, no oil dripping anywhere, look at the steering rack and tie rod ends (if it has been wheeled hard these can be issues), Check the manifold (one issue with the 2.7 is cracking the exhaust manifold usually between #2 and #3 cylinder), and inspect that the rear springs are not completely wore out our worse one leaf broken.

But even if it is excellent shape it would be hard for me to pay over 6k. between 5 and 5.5k is what i would shoot for.
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Old 06-12-2007, 11:38 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Well, went and gave it a thorough checkover and found nothing wrong with it so I bought it, $6500, which I think was pretty fair for the shape its in (they were asking $8995). Going to pick it up this afternoon. Thanks for everyones advice.

EDIT: Just got it home, so far I'm very pleased with it. I think these are the smallest BFG A/T's known to man though, lol:

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Old 06-12-2007, 08:17 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Now that I've got the truck I have a few more questions. I'm planing on changing all the fluids, (engine/tranny/t-case/axles) and I'm also hoping to get 300k mi out of this truck (DD), so I don't mind buying good oil if it will help longevity, any suggestions on brands/viscosity? Are there any other engine related things that need to be done at the 150K mi mark, I know it doesn't have a timing belt to change, but any other similar periodic maintenance that needs to be attended to? Thanks.
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Old 06-13-2007, 07:27 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I use the stock toyota filters on mine. I buy a case at a time from the dealer and it comes out cheaper than fram or the others. And a the OEM filter has a special valve in it that the other makers don't have. The manual calls for 5w-30 I usually use Mobil Full synthetic but i switch if there is a good sale on on of the other brands. Next I would probably go ahead and change the plugs and wires. Then I just changed my diff and tcase gears in mine and I put Mobil 75-90 full synthetic in mine and added a little Lucas Synthetic
But other than that you should be good to go.

With that size tires you probably have 3.88 gears so if you want to go any bigger you will probably need to look into regearing
Here is you a link to a figure out what gears you got. Look around the other Tech sections for some more good info.
http://www.tacomaterritory.com/wiki/...php/Gear_Codes

Good luck and congrats on getting a tacoma
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