Still in the planning initial planning phases, need some help.
Quick back round, After a few years of thinking, saving, researching, I've finally set a date.
I will be setting off, from my home in April 2014, with a duration of 6 months, but doesn't have to finish that quickly! then I will be living in Sweden with my girlfriend. As she wants to move home eventually, I found this the perfect time to do my first reasonable size trip.
Anyway, we will be doing around 15,000 - 18,000 miles, from England, to the top of Norway, Finland, Russia across to Mongolia, back via Ukraine, down to Bulgaria and the black sea, then across via ferry to Italy from greece, back up to Sweden. Or something like that, anyway.
Initially I thought motorbike, however had some bad experiences this year which has put me off a little bit.
So my next option was cycling, or truck. I'm just swinging towards truck.
With my budget I have around £4,000 to buy the truck. So all of my options are around 10 years old, with 100,000 miles on them. This doesn't scare me, however, should it? Low capacity diesel engines should last for ever right?
My options are;
I'll then have a budget to prepare, maintain, fix anything wrong with the truck of a reasonable amount.
I know and have read many story's of people going round the world on many different things. I can't afford to do a Ewan. Am I been crazy, is the risk too high on such a vehicle? I am reasonably handy with my tools.
If not, what should I choose? I really like the Hilux, just the idea of a pick up is confusing compared to a standard land cruiser.
Actually, do you really need a 4x4?
Plugging the Toyota side of things, I would suggest looking at Land Cruiser Colorados/Prados or maybe a Forerunner (estate version of Hilux) -these are pretty capable off road and will be more economic than the larger 80s and 100s.
I think for Russia, Mongolia, stan's 4x4 would be helpful.
It's not an exhaustive list of countries to visit and my hope is the girlfriend will say... I don't want to go home, can we keep going for a while longer? Then go to africa, so don't want to be limited.
I've actually seen the suzuki Grand Vitara, to be much cheaper, have a higher MPG and can get a newer, lower mileage, better condition car for the money, so might go for that.
Just scares me setting off on a trip with a car already with 150,000 + on the clock that's 15+ years old
For most of the Japanese 4x4s age doesn't make that much difference. Once you get over a certain age it is pointless looking for younger and prettier versions of the same model, chances are they will have the same issues as an older and rougher version so they will both cost the same to baseline to a suitable mechanical condition.
The Vitara may be a good deal on paper, but how easy will it be for getting upgraded components required in preparation or parts once you are on the road?
I would think about doing it in a small van.. good security and cheap easy to fix.. and you could sleep in it.! do you really need a 4x4? personally i would take a discovery van but i'm a landy guy.
The pickup is also a great option especially if well thought out with slide out storage & hard top over the bed again it could be used for stealth camping.
I saw a nice toyota pickup in muri a few years back and was very impressed.
you could also look at the toyota surf, basically a hilux with comfy interior and an interegral roof over the bed.
I agree with others earlier - Do you really need a 4x4?
Insisting on one restricts choice, increases costs and adds to the mechanical complexity.
Unless you are considering some 'extreme' routes you will be on tarmac or good, regularly graded, gravel roads throughout, other than possibly in the Stans and Mongolia (to where I have not been, although I 'strayed' across the theoretical border in a remote, trackless part of Tuva - according to our GPS trace and mobile network Welcome messages!).
Any, and I do mean ANY, car sensibly driven can cope with your route - and thousands do, day after day after day.
If considering lesser, unmade/dirt roads - again, normal (do we call them 2x4?) cars also drive them daily without problem other than possibly in bad weather conditions.
As you will find out, either in further research or on your trip, most of the World is not the 'adventure' it once was.
London to Brighton was a challenge once.
I regularly see travellers returning towards Europe who had a far easier (and less challenging) journey than they expected or prepared for.
However, they enjoyed their trips just as much - just not as anticipated.
Not sure if it's needed, I think you are right, however want maybe stronger. ;)
I'm going to look at a few different types this weekend.
whatever you decide get it sooner rather than later so you have time to 'get to know it' before you depart. You can repair/strengthen/replace/modify things you are not happy with in plenty of time and the comfort of the UK.
We are doing a similar trip next year. Admittedly we are taking our completely over prepared Land Rover, but it was never really built with this trip in mind. More for general off-roading in the UK/EU.
I agree with you on that, I'm just not sure weather to buy now, or wait for spring.
Unsure how much the winter market might increase prices of people wanting one just for winter...
You probably wont achieve much over the darker nights of winter anyway :freezing:
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