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  1. #1
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    Who drives a Xterra for Biking?

    Hey guys,I'm getting back in Mtn.biking after some things that were beyond my control.

    I'm looking at getting an Xterra for times when I need a 4x4(snow,etc) and when I'm mountain biking (4x4 used also). I see there's a lot of DIY bike mounts for inside the vehicle which I prefer.Just seems more secure,even though I know if somebody wants it,they will try to get it.

    Anyways,what are your guys opinions,thoughts? How does it handle the 4x4 stuff? Any particular model year I should consider? I'm not looking for something in great shape,but not junk either. I have seen a few 2001/2002 models around the 3-4k price range.Let me know.Thanks
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  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by NC-Biker View Post
    Anyways,what are your guys opinions,thoughts? How does it handle the 4x4 stuff? Any particular model year I should consider? I'm not looking for something in great shape,but not junk either. I have seen a few 2001/2002 models around the 3-4k price range.Let me know.Thanks
    Opinion: You can do quite a bit better than an Xterra at the price point if you consider a Jeep Cherokee. I have owned a 96 Cherokee for 16 years and 150K miles and it still runs strong with no signs of slowing down. I also owned a 2012 Xterra brand new for 1200 miles before the truck was scrap as identified by Nissans own engineering team. granted this is an extreme example. I'm 6'2" and with an internal rack still sleep in the back as well. Just one guys opinion.

  3. #3
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    lol id like to know why the xterra was considered "scrap". xterra is a great vehicle, I had one for 30k miles and only traded it in because of gas mileage. id love to get another one. I had a kuat hitch rack and the completely plastic rear trunk is super nice for getting dirty and easy to clean up. the 4wd is killer and overall its a very good vehicle. the jeep Cherokee was a great vehicle back in 1996 until they stopped making them in 2001. the new Cherokee is nothing even remotely close to what the Cherokee was and considering they had a stop sale on Cherokees because of faulty transmission electronics before the vehicle was even sold, that kinda sucks the faith right out of it. chrylser is probably the worst American car company out there, wouldn't touch one with your bank account lol
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  4. #4
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    Thanks for the info. So I should look into an early model Cherokee if that's what I was also looking for?
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  5. #5
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    yeah the 2001 and prior Cherokees came with the 4.0 straight six and the solid axles front and rear. ive had three of them and they are tough trucks. things to look out for are floor rot up front, lots of floor patching going on there. if youre going to look for an older vehicle say closer to 2000, the earlier xterras were pretty beefy as well. you can also look at the late 90s grand Cherokees which are basically a big Cherokee, same axles and motor etc
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  6. #6
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    Who drives a Xterra for Biking?

    I have a 2005 Xterra. It currently has 125,000 miles and still goes strong. The 2015 is basically the same vehicle. I love this thing but it gets horrible fuel economy, about 13-14 city, 18 or so on the highway. One thing I really like is the cargo compartment. It's not carpeted, nor are the backs of the rear seat. It's a hard plastic surface and has some mounting tracks to mount a bike stand or whatever else you want. The hard plastic rear surface makes cleaning a breeze.

    I figure I can probably get another 50k miles out of it and then trade it in for a new Xterra if they still make it then.

    If you can deal with crap fuel economy this is a good truck based suv.

  7. #7
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    Gas mileage is a little low,but since I will only drive it due to snow and only on the weekends,it may not be a huge concern. Thanks for the info and pic.

    Quote Originally Posted by Meat Curtain View Post
    I have a 2005 Xterra. It currently has 125,000 miles and still goes strong. The 2015 is basically the same vehicle. I love this thing but it gets horrible fuel economy, about 13-14 city, 18 or so on the highway. One thing I really like is the cargo compartment. It's not carpeted, nor are the backs of the rear seat. It's a hard plastic surface and has some mounting tracks to mount a bike stand or whatever else you want. The hard plastic rear surface makes cleaning a breeze.

    I figure I can probably get another 50k miles out of it and then trade it in for a new Xterra if they still make it then.

    If you can deal with crap fuel economy this is a good truck based suv.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by obs08 View Post
    lol id like to know why the xterra was considered "scrap". xterra is a great vehicle, I had one for 30k miles and only traded it in because of gas mileage. id love to get another one. I had a kuat hitch rack and the completely plastic rear trunk is super nice for getting dirty and easy to clean up. the 4wd is killer and overall its a very good vehicle. the jeep Cherokee was a great vehicle back in 1996 until they stopped making them in 2001. the new Cherokee is nothing even remotely close to what the Cherokee was and considering they had a stop sale on Cherokees because of faulty transmission electronics before the vehicle was even sold, that kinda sucks the faith right out of it.
    The Xterra was scrapped for multiple issues. 1) Roof rack leaked water into the side airbags. 2) Quarter sized rust spot in middle of door 3) water in transmission fluid 4) Interior trashed after attempted roof repair... Nissan offered a 2wd replacement when I bought a Pro4X after 6 months of the vehicle being in the shop. I only drove the Xterra for a month, it sucked gas and had terrible 4wd system leaving us stuck in White Sands. An old stock 4wd Cherokee pulled us out.

    The new Cherokee was is nothing like the old version. I've heard rumors that Alfa Romero had a hand in the new version, but unsure if this is true.

    If you do decide to shop for an older Cherokee they are great vehicles, but have a few issues that can turn them into a nightmare if you don't know what to look for. 1) Rust - Crawl under the jeep looking for floor rot. 2) Unibody stress - Open and close all the doors on level ground then park one tire up on the curb and repeat. If the unibody has been stressed the doors will feel different when you open and close them. This is especially true on lifted versions that have been abused. Frame stiffeners can help but best if installed before it has issues. 3) Weak front axle - Again if the thing has been lifted and abused check the 4wd making sure the front wheels engage. A lifted Cherokee with 31s puts minimal stress on the drivetrain, but 33s and up you will want to ensure the front axle bearings are still good.

    The Xterra looks great on paper and if you get lucky it can be a decent vehicle. In my experience and the experience of friends who have owned Xterras they will never buy a Nissan product again. While I don't love Chrysler I think a vehicle with a production run from 1984 to 2001 would be a better buy.

  9. #9
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    Who drives a Xterra for Biking?

    Sounds like you got a lemon for an Xterra, that sucks. I've had none of the those issues with mine. There was a defect with the original radiators from like 2005-2010 that caused an internal crack to develop and mix fluids. Supposedly it was fixed around 2010 with a change in the radiator model. I put a different brand on mine and have had nothing short of an awesome experience with the car. I used to own an '88 jeep Cherokee in the mid nineties that was nothing but trouble. I guess everyone's experience is different. I'm not loyal to any auto manufacturer but I have to say the Xterra has been amazing for me. I do like the new 4runners but I don't think they are worth the price.

  10. #10
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    I have owned a Jeep Cherokee (96) and an Xterra (2007)....no comparison. Xterra is more comfortable, handles better, better stereo, seats, even better off-road. I even manage to get 22mpg hwy with 33's, armor, and bikes on the back (6sp Manual). I'm at 90k and have had quite literally zero issue and just checked the spark plugs and brakes--probably another 25k at least before they need to be touched.

    Who drives a Xterra for Biking?-xterratowing_zpsyni4bycb.jpg

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    Elephant Hill no problem.

  11. #11
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    2006 xterra owner. It's been a good car. Very reliable, good capacity. I can sleep in it. Haul bikes inside with homemade rack similar to above. Inside was fine until I started riding a lot. Dropping seat into tube gets old, now have a Thule t2.

  12. #12
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    And yes, mpg sucks. I want to get a smaller awd next, maybe Subaru xv.

  13. #13
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    Subaru is nice (we also have a WRX), but unless you also do a hitch mount, anything on the roof brings it squarely back to the Xterra MPG, which I find quite funny. Been equally as reliable, with the exception of busting the steering rack at 32k while driving 'spirited' in Utah.

  14. #14
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    I have owned a 2011 4x4 Xterra for 3.5 yrs now with zero issues, other than gas mileage kind of sucks. I would recommend or purchase another one.

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  15. #15
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    Who drives a Xterra for Biking?

    Quote Originally Posted by Klainmeister View Post
    Subaru is nice (we also have a WRX), but unless you also do a hitch mount, anything on the roof brings it squarely back to the Xterra MPG, which I find quite funny. Been equally as reliable, with the exception of busting the steering rack at 32k while driving 'spirited' in Utah.
    Huh? My Subaru XV lived in a 3x Thule sidearm roof rack and 1 up hitch rack. With the racks and no bikes, I never got less than 27 mpg and that was on hard days. With bikes I'd get 26-27 mpg. I'd love to hear how that's similar to an Xterra. My worst mileage ever was a 400 mile round trip to Moab with 3 bikes on the roof and pulling a fully loaded utility trailer, along with 4 people. I got 19 mpg that trip. Now that's similar to an Xterra, on its good days. That is quite funny.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silentfoe View Post
    Huh? My Subaru XV lived in a 3x Thule sidearm roof rack and 1 up hitch rack. With the racks and no bikes, I never got less than 27 mpg and that was on hard days. With bikes I'd get 26-27 mpg. I'd love to hear how that's similar to an Xterra. My worst mileage ever was a 400 mile round trip to Moab with 3 bikes on the roof and pulling a fully loaded utility trailer, along with 4 people. I got 19 mpg that trip. Now that's similar to an Xterra, on its good days. That is quite funny.
    The 2.5L turbo motors get crappy MPG in general due to crappy gearing and boost. The XV is a direct injection motor with a CVT so it is much more efficient.

  17. #17
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    I realize that, and he said he owned a WRX but his opening and continuation of the post was Subaru in general.
    I'm a mountain bike guide in southwest Utah

  18. #18
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    Had a 2004 Xterra back in the day...was a great vehicle except for the MPG as others have mentioned..drove it all over with bikes and gear and never had a issue...was a good vehicle while I had it...very capable off road

  19. #19
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    '15 is the last year for the Xterra. First the FJ Cruiser, now the X, how long before the 4Runner bites the dust? This will leave only the Soccer-Mom Wrangler Unlimiteds.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Silentfoe View Post
    I realize that, and he said he owned a WRX but his opening and continuation of the post was Subaru in general.
    Yes, the fellow mentioned he was also considering an XV. If you have any joy in driving, the CVT is an abomination, but otherwise they are killer vehicles. Throw in super tall gears and a turbo and all of the sudden all the efficiency is sucked out. Just saying this: with roof mounted bikes I was getting 22mpg going the speed limit. It also takes premium.

    The Xterra, also manual, I was able to go the exact same route, same speed, with the above trailer and bikes loaded at 18mpg--standard octane fuel. Net result was the same, but much more space and camping gear with the Xterra.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by deuxdiesel View Post
    '15 is the last year for the Xterra. First the FJ Cruiser, now the X, how long before the 4Runner bites the dust? This will leave only the Soccer-Mom Wrangler Unlimiteds.
    Just cross your fingers that the new diesel engine in the Frontier comes over to some sort of Navara type SUV.

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    Xterra's are the cat's ass!

    I've been driving my 2008 SE since brand new and haven't had any problems with it at all other than normal wear and tear and a nail in the tire in the last 87K miles. It's pretty mildly modified and perfect as far as I'm concerned.

    I have: Shrockworks front bumper with winch, Shrockworks skid plates, Maxterra rear bumper, AJ's Offroad sliders, a Dephep roof rack insert with custom crossbars, the electronic locking rear axle from an Offroad Xterra, a Nissan Titan front differential with V-8 Pathfinder CV axles, PRG Radflow front coilovers and Alcan springs with Daystar shackles for a 2 inch lift on 33" tires.

    It is perfect for the off roading I do, hauls my kayaks and bikes everywhere I want to go.

    Who drives a Xterra for Biking?-2012-10-21_15-58-25_696.jpg

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  23. #23
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    Who drives a Xterra for Biking?

    I've been searching the Internet and can't find an actual confirmation that the Xterra is in fact discontinued. There are articles and reports from Edmunds and a few magazines, but nothing official from Nissan yet. If it actually is cancelled I'll be trading in my other car (Prius) for a new Xterra. Then I'll have two.

  24. #24
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    Per Wikipedia:

    "On February 24, 2015, Nissan announced that it was ending production on the Xterra after the 2015 model year. The news of its demise was evidenced in Nissan's avoidance of promoting the SUV and the desire to not update or use the money to re-engineer the Xterra's safety and emissions specs. Another factor was the declining interest in off-road SUVs, where it sold only 16,505 units in 2014, trailing the Jeep Wrangler. Nissan has no plans to offer a replacement for the Xterra."

    Its a real shame. It's all about sales of unibody crossover vehicles now... that's what the suburbanite soccer moms want apparently. I'm not sure what Nissan expected, I haven't seen a single ad by them in the last 10 years for the Xterra.... no marketing, no sales...duh!

    Awards and recognition (Wikipedia)

    2000 Motor Trend's Sport Utility of the Year
    2000 North American Truck of the Year
    2000 New England Motor Press Association's Winter Vehicle Award of New England for Best in Class - Mini Sport Utility
    2001 Named Top Car by AAA New Car and Truck Buying Guide
    2005 Named on the Automobile Magazine's 50 Great New Cars list
    2006 Nominated as North American Truck of the Year
    2006 Motor Trend's Sport Utility of the Year
    2006 Motor Trend's Truck Trend's Best Little-Guy SUV Award
    2006 Car and Driver Rock-Hopper SUV Winner
    2006 4x4 of the Year award from Peterson's 4-Wheel and Off-Road magazine.
    2006 Edmunds.com Editor's Most Wanted Vehicle
    2009 4Wheeler Magazine's SUV of the Year
    2010 Xterra received the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's highest Side-impact Safety Rating (five stars).

  25. #25
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    Who drives a Xterra for Biking?

    Well crap.... I guess I'm getting rid of my Prius.

  26. #26
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    A Frontier 4-door would be nice too. There's been plenty of times I wish I could have just throw my bikes over the tailgate vs. a rack, but oh well...

  27. #27
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    A Frontier 4-door would be nice too. There's been plenty of times I wish I could have just throw my bikes over the tailgate vs. a rack, but oh well...

  28. #28
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    I had a 2000 Xterra bought new in 1999 and it came with the Yakima interior bike rack. Worked great and I could get two bikes back there no problem, just lower the seat.

    Sold it with 175k on it. Timing belt at about 140 and it's a ***** to change the spark plug in back of the engine bay. Other than that great vehicle.

    I originally bought it because it was marketed as a sub-20k SUV and I had a new family. It was great for us and I think I paid about 22k out the door.

  29. #29
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    Yeah I like that idea too. But I also like the security of having the bikes inside the vehicle if I needed to run some errands or whatever. I'm also exploring the idea of a Tacoma or Frontier with a shell.

  30. #30
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    Not enough aftermarket support so I went with an FJ Cruiser... Fun fact! One of the 1st Xterra commercials featured a guy on a mountain bike falling down a hill to showcase the Xterra's FirstAid kit... That mt.bike was a pull shock schwinn straight 6! I have nothing against the xterra its self, I would love to have leafsprings and 4 doors but not enough aftermarket support for my personal liking. Nothing wrong with jeelps, except the new glorified mini van they call a Cherokee. I just wanted a Tanka truck and the FJ was the closest one that fit my life style
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  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by shwinn8 View Post
    Not enough aftermarket support so I went with an FJ Cruiser... Fun fact! One of the 1st Xterra commercials featured a guy on a mountain bike falling down a hill to showcase the Xterra's FirstAid kit... That mt.bike was a pull shock schwinn straight 6! I have nothing against the xterra its self, I would love to have leafsprings and 4 doors but not enough aftermarket support for my personal liking. Nothing wrong with jeelps, except the new glorified mini van they call a Cherokee. I just wanted a Tanka truck and the FJ was the closest one that fit my life style
    I had an 08 FJ. Liked a lot about it but hated the HUGE blind spots. Not only in the rear but the ones produced by the giant side mirrors. Not a tremendous amount of room in the back and didn't fold flat. Also would have been nice to have the gate swing down instead of to the side.

  32. #32
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    Who drives a Xterra for Biking?

    I tried that once but the singletrack got too narrow. I had to go back to my bike for biking.
    Live like there's no tomorrow. But pay your bills just in case there is.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by HitmenOnlyInc View Post
    I had an 08 FJ. Liked a lot about it but hated the HUGE blind spots. Not only in the rear but the ones produced by the giant side mirrors. Not a tremendous amount of room in the back and didn't fold flat. Also would have been nice to have the gate swing down instead of to the side.
    I'll hold my sarcastic comments to myself, the FJ isn't for everyone
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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by shwinn8 View Post
    I'll hold my sarcastic comments to myself, the FJ isn't for everyone
    Despite my complaints. I really liked the truck.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shwinn8 View Post
    Not enough aftermarket support so I went with an FJ Cruiser... Fun fact! One of the 1st Xterra commercials featured a guy on a mountain bike falling down a hill to showcase the Xterra's FirstAid kit... That mt.bike was a pull shock schwinn straight 6! I have nothing against the xterra its self, I would love to have leafsprings and 4 doors but not enough aftermarket support for my personal liking. Nothing wrong with jeelps, except the new glorified mini van they call a Cherokee. I just wanted a Tanka truck and the FJ was the closest one that fit my life style
    Aftermarket support is plentiful if you know where to look. thenewx.org is a very decent Xterra forum that details all kinds of peoples builds with aftermarket parts, including front solid axles and spring over axle builds with body lifts, huge suspension lifts, and huge 38" tires. Not quite my thing, I only wanted to go with a 2 - 3" lift and 33" tires as mine is a daily driver. There are tons of custom shops making parts for the Xterra.

  36. #36
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    2000-2004 are underpowered turds !!! The 3.3 L are horrible on fuel, gutless engines. The 2005 and up have the 4.0 L and have much better power but still horrible MPG. I had a 2002 which are sporty and cool to look at, but ended up trading it off for a 2010 4dr frontier and couldn't be happier. It has a roof rack, hitch and a bed (if you wanna call it that)to use for transporting your bike.

  37. #37
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    I've seen some pretty sweet built X's on a few sites
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  38. #38
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    also, if your looking at 2000-2004 models, make sure you as k if the timing belt has been changed. The 3.3 L are an interference engine. If they don't know, make plans to do so.

  39. #39
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    2006's came with rear lockers on the Off road package
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    Quote Originally Posted by shwinn8 View Post
    2006's came with rear lockers on the Off road package
    2005 Off Road models to the current Pro4X models all have electric locking rear differentials. Mine is a 2008 SE model, but I put the e-locker axle from a 2007 OR model in mine, along with a Nissan Titan front differential with matching gear ratio...coupled with V-8 Pathfinder front CV's.

    I've got the e-locker wired up so I can only lock it when in low range 4x4 with a dash switch. It makes a pretty huge difference when crawling.... Otherwise, all 4x4 models, regardless of trim level have ABLS... Anti-Lock Brake System Limited Slip... If a wheel loses traction and slips it automatically applies the brake to that wheel to divert power the the other wheels with traction.

  41. #41
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    2007 Xterra with 175,000 miles on it. I love it. Its been a really reliable vehicle up until last year, when I had to put a new tranny in there last year because of the issue with the radiator leaking into the transmission, cost me 3500. (less than 10 months of payments on a new car) I weighed the options and fixed the car. Besides that, just shocks, tires, and brake pads - all typical expenses. Its running well again, and I haven't had a car payment in 6 years. When you aren't making a payment, spending a few extra bucks on gas doesn't hurt as much.
    RideMFRide

  42. #42
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    Just curious, do you live in a colder climate? I was told the radiator issues were more prevalent in the cold.

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    No, I live in South Carolina.
    RideMFRide

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    I have a 2000 xterra with a manual transmission with 200,000 miles on it and love it. The gas mileage is about the same as the 95 toyota 4runner I had. We use a roof rack and a hitch rack when the whole family goes for a ride.

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