SUV + Mtn Bike in the back- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    President Skroob
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    SUV + Mtn Bike in the back

    I am getting rid of my WRX and getting either a used 4Runner or a new Xterra. The Xterra has a Yakima bar you can install in the back that allows for a fork mount in the back of the vehicle. The bike sits upright in the back.

    Two questions:
    1 - Does anyone have any experience travelling with your bike this way, does the lack of rear wheel support mess up the fork?
    2 - The 4Runner is designed more for the soccer mom which is strange since every mag says its the best all-around 4x4 (reliability+off-road+depreciation etc). Does someone here drive a 4Runner and travel like this? If so how did you get it to work, e.g. what did you use (product) in the back for a fork mount and how did you mount it?

    I am getting the SUV, but am hesitant to just dive into one without making sure this will work. I want to start off-roading, but also want to be able to travel to the trail head with the bikes inside instead of hanging out. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Occidental Tourist
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    you can create an inside mount with some 2x4 (or these http://www.saveaload.com/bikecarrier.htm) and these http://www.orsracksdirect.com/rockym...bike-rack.html.
    put the rear seats down and it should work fine.
    i prefer to have mine up top.
    pretty capable off-road too.
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  3. #3
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    What was the cost to fit the rack with the gear to put your bike up there? My only worry is that I will be stupid and drive it right into my garage with the bike right on top. I know myself and there will be that day I forget.

  4. #4
    Occidental Tourist
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    Quote Originally Posted by GueroAZ
    What was the cost to fit the rack with the gear to put your bike up there? My only worry is that I will be stupid and drive it right into my garage with the bike right on top. I know myself and there will be that day I forget.
    not sure cuz i've had this rack for 8 years. just bought new towers for $100ish but i think towers and crossbars will run you roughly $300 new (www.yakima.com). trays for the bike can be had relatively cheap, same with wheel mounts.
    i worry about running into stuff too but haven't yet. i pu the recycle bin in my spot so i have to get out to move it and it reminds me to take my bike off the roof.

  5. #5
    President Skroob
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    Thanks YuriB.

    Going to look at a couple used 4Runners this weekend, a 2005 4x4 with 30k miles for $24k, and a 2004 4x4 with 28k miles for $21k. I drove a 4Runner last weekend and was sold on it until I saw the back of the Xterra which seems to be designed for people who trail ride, hike, etc. I just hated the interior and Consumer Reports wasn't really sold it. They are sold on the 4Runner and rate it high in all categories.

    One last question? How does yours drive on the freeway? Any shaking that kind of thing? The one I drove shook a bit at 65-70mph but so did the new Xterra at the same speed.

  6. #6
    Occidental Tourist
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    Quote Originally Posted by GueroAZ
    Thanks YuriB.

    Going to look at a couple used 4Runners this weekend, a 2005 4x4 with 30k miles for $24k, and a 2004 4x4 with 28k miles for $21k. I drove a 4Runner last weekend and was sold on it until I saw the back of the Xterra which seems to be designed for people who trail ride, hike, etc. I just hated the interior and Consumer Reports wasn't really sold it. They are sold on the 4Runner and rate it high in all categories.

    One last question? How does yours drive on the freeway? Any shaking that kind of thing? The one I drove shook a bit at 65-70mph but so did the new Xterra at the same speed.
    pony-up for the 2006 if you can. more HP and some other fun stuff.
    if you are a costco member go thru their auto purchase program. best thing ever.
    no hwy probs. i took the fam to CO this summer, did some 4wheeling and still no hwy probs. i've taken it up to 100 with no shakin.
    the used ones might just need an alignment but who knows.
    durtgirl has a older model and loves hers.
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  7. #7
    President Skroob
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    I figured tire balancing/wheel alignment would fix it, but the new Xterra shake was a little strange. I would pony up the $33k for the '06, but just can't justify spending $33k on a car. Especially for the 4x4 punishment I will put it through and 35 mile work commute one-way. I think the '04-05 has 245 hp? Funny thing is my modified WRX as 265hp, dyno-tested. I will lose 20hp and add 2000 lbs. I drove a 2005 and it had enough pickup for me and I think it had a towing ability of 5000 lbs. Thats plenty for me.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by YuriB
    pony-up for the 2006 if you can. more HP and some other fun stuff.
    if you are a costco member go thru their auto purchase program. best thing ever.
    no hwy probs. i took the fam to CO this summer, did some 4wheeling and still no hwy probs. i've taken it up to 100 with no shakin.
    the used ones might just need an alignment but who knows.
    durtgirl has a older model and loves hers.
    New car? Sweet.....ya damn yuppie.

    We have an Xterra. I think the bike mount in the car is a bit misleading as you have to take the backseats out to use it (which I assume is the case for all SUVs). We have a hitch-mount, and it's basically useless as our bikes hang pretty damn low (both are FS, and we need to use one of those adapters). But I'm not sure if it's the rack or the car. Other than that, I like it, but it's kind of small inside. In addition, not very powerful (I think ours is a 2001 or 2002; they uped the HP after we got it), and a gas-guzzle (well, compared to my Protege, which gets like 30 to the gallon).

  9. #9
    Occidental Tourist
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    Quote Originally Posted by skinny-tire
    New car? Sweet.....ya damn yuppie.
    get with the times man. that's the old car.
    this is the new one and the one everyone fights to drive right now.
    you ever finish your house?
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by GueroAZ
    My only worry is that I will be stupid and drive it right into my garage with the bike right on top. I know myself and there will be that day I forget.
    I'm paranoid about this as well and what works for me is this:

    I have to pull the vehicle out of the garage to load the bikes. When I get in the car to back out, I push the garage opener and take it off my visor right then and put it in my console.

    I have to say that after a long day of riding, on more than one ocassion I've driven right up to the garage door and reached up to the visor to open the garage clueless that I have bikes up top ONLY to find the opener is not there and realizing why it's not there, I am grateful that I stashed it earlier!

    I had a 1996 4Runner 4X4 and a 2000 4Runner and love both. Good Luck.

    (I now have a hitch rack on the 2005 Pathfinder and prefer that to up top but that is just me...)
    "Nobody ever told me not to try" - Curious George Soundtrack by Jack Johnson

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by YuriB
    get with the times man. that's the old car.
    this is the new one and the one everyone fights to drive right now.
    you ever finish your house?
    Okay, I amend my comment. You're an ultra-yuppie . Nice car. Did you get through the CostCo program?

    Define "finish." Inside is basically done. We're trying to decide what to do with outside, but it basically entails tearing everything out and starting from scratch. By that time, bikes will friggin peddle themselves.

  12. #12
    sixsixtysix
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    I got a 2000 Xterra and have tried every imaginable way to haul bikes in and on it.

    The Interior Method: Should work with most SUV's. Definetly the most secure. Don't bother with the $200 yakima bar that goes in back. Go to home depot, get a 1x6" cut it to 46" paint it Black/Grey to match the interior and go buy 2 fork mounts from performance. Total cost is less than $30. I used to use that method with XC bikes and it works great. Now the bad part. Bikes with forks taller than 115-130mm (depending on bars etc.) dont fit.

    Roof Rack: The method I currently use. I found a guy selling 4 Yakima Raptor rails on craigslist for $100. Not bad seeing they retail for $129 each. Went to REI and bought a couple boxes of Mighty Mounts and about a hour later the roof can haul 3 DH bikes no problem. (A little modification of the rails with some vice grips was needed for tire clearence.) They are very stable even blowing down the highway at 80mph and did fine with all my bikes strapped up there when I moved 2200 miles out from Chicago to Phoenix.

    So now I can haul 5 bikes total with the X as long as 2 of them are smaller XC style rigs.

    I dont really recommend the hitch mount systems with the Xterra. I have seen a few where if you are hauling more than 2 bikes it makes the rear end sag quite a bit because of the leverage. With the Xterra the one thing you MUST remember is the cargo weight limit is only 850lbs including passengers. I learned this the hard way hauling some heavy items and did a number to the rear suspension.

  13. #13
    sixsixtysix
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    Oh Yeah. I forgot to mention. You can get a used Xterra for next to nothing since there are so many around. Our 2000 is worth a little over 7K now. If you can find a 03/04 for resonable they are the better deal as they were the first ones to have the supercharger which gave it another 70hp. The 99-02's are dogs when doing things like climbing hills on the highway. (Only 170hp hauling 5300lbs) The drive up to Flag nearly kills me everytime as I am doing 45mph up through Verde Vally. This in turn kills your gas milage. (Maybe 13-17mpg) They are great for offroading though and are very capable even in their stock config.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by skinny-tire
    Okay, I amend my comment. You're an ultra-yuppie . Nice car. Did you get through the CostCo program?

    Define "finish." Inside is basically done. We're trying to decide what to do with outside, but it basically entails tearing everything out and starting from scratch. By that time, bikes will friggin peddle themselves.
    What are you two going to do if you actually finish it all? I think there are treatments for Ikea/Home Depot withdrawal.
    I AM JUST A JERK

  15. #15
    Occidental Tourist
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    wannabe limo liberal

    Quote Originally Posted by skinny-tire
    Okay, I amend my comment. You're an ultra-yuppie . Nice car. Did you get through the CostCo program?

    Define "finish." Inside is basically done. We're trying to decide what to do with outside, but it basically entails tearing everything out and starting from scratch. By that time, bikes will friggin peddle themselves.
    yup costco program. $100 over invoice. lifetime oil changes. no haggle, no hassle.wish i had done the 4runner that way...

    if it makes you feel better my house ain't done yet either and never will be. hell i bet mine looks like a hovel compared to your palace.

    the subie was an unanticipated replacement for the plastic car.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirdir
    What are you two going to do if you actually finish it all? I think there are treatments for Ikea/Home Depot withdrawal.
    You're assuming we are going to finish it. By the time we're done, it will be dated again, and we'll have to start over.

    And I have not been to either IKEA or Home Depot in like 30 days: a record.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by YuriB
    yup costco program. $100 over invoice. lifetime oil changes. no haggle, no hassle.wish i had done the 4runner that way...

    if it makes you feel better my house ain't done yet either and never will be. hell i bet mine looks like a hovel compared to your palace.

    the subie was an unanticipated replacement for the plastic car.
    Yikes! When did that happen. Ours is looking pretty good. Once the weather breaks, I'll organize something at my place and have you over.

    Awesome on the car. Autumn's bro bought a Suburu Forrester (is that what you have?), and at the time, they were going for sticker because of the demand. I might be in the market for a new car, so I might have to look into that.

  18. #18
    Kathleen in AZ
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noelg
    I'm paranoid about this as well and what works for me is this:

    I have to pull the vehicle out of the garage to load the bikes. When I get in the car to back out, I push the garage opener and take it off my visor right then and put it in my console.

    I have to say that after a long day of riding, on more than one ocassion I've driven right up to the garage door and reached up to the visor to open the garage clueless that I have bikes up top ONLY to find the opener is not there and realizing why it's not there, I am grateful that I stashed it earlier!

    I had a 1996 4Runner 4X4 and a 2000 4Runner and love both. Good Luck.

    (I now have a hitch rack on the 2005 Pathfinder and prefer that to up top but that is just me...)
    I had a silver 93 4Runner and loved it so much that I traded it in for a new silver one back in 99. Most of the time I just put the seats down and roll my bike in the back - don't have to remove the front wheel at all. For longer trips or trips with more than one bike, I put em up top on the Yakima racks. I also put kayaks up top (and dogs inside). Both my 4Runners have been completely reliable. Go for oversized tires when you need new ones and take off the running boards if you want to avoid looking like a soccer mom!

    oh yea, I did drive into the garage once back in Ohio with a bike on the roof rack. Not good. Bike demolished and had to have the roof, rails, and rear window replaced on my 93. More recently I did back the truck too close to the garage with the kayak on top and tapped the garage. Luckily, no damage!

  19. #19
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    a buddy of mine has a 4 runner with a home made deal. Cargo bar & 2 bolt on fork mounts, mounted with hose clamps. I think he spent about $50

    The only issue. It sucks for 2 bikes. We both have 5" travel full suspension bikes. Makes it for a really tight fit. And one of the bikes would always have to have its fork travel adjusted down so the handle bars could be lower.

  20. #20
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    I have an Xterra (wifes), and have tried alot. On the X you need to lower your seat which can be a pain in the ass (or knee) trying to set it up right again- especially on a no QR seat clamp. On basically any SUV- top racks are the way to go. The hatch area holds people and cargo (carpooling is responsible) and the trailer hitch tows my pop top camper for out of town races. Try Rocky Mounts, they work very well. I was skeptical at first bought got ahold of two real cheap and tried them. They are just as good as Yakima and almost look as nice as the Thule on the Vulva (my Volvo ). If I could choose between the X or the Forerunner, or could afford a Forerunner right now- I would have one. But the X is tough as a brick, looks kinda like one and is cheap.
    Vassago Cycles, Shadetree Bikes, Flat Tire Bikes, Galfer Brakes USA

  21. #21
    President Skroob
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    I started the thread. Thanks for all the info up there guys. I think I am going to try for a 4Runner, used, maybe 2003-5. I don't want to even think about smashing the bike pulling into the garage so I will try a setup with a 2x6 and a couple of fork mounts in the back. I am not sure on the clearance since I mainly ride a Soma Juice 29er with a Reba fork. I am pretty sure it will fit in the 4Runner. I ride every Saturday with a friend so i would need two mounts for both bikes. Otherwise I could just lay it down in the back.

    I will look into what would be needed to setup up the top rack to fit a bike though for trips. That would leave the rear for people/cargo. I wanted to keep the bikes in the cab since I finish most rides at noon'ish and like to grab some lunch. I am too paranoid and end up checking on the bikes hanging on the trunk rack of my wrx. Anyway, thanks for the info.

  22. #22
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    Voice of reason

    Quote Originally Posted by GueroAZ
    I started the thread. Thanks for all the info up there guys. I think I am going to try for a 4Runner, used, maybe 2003-5.
    Are you *sure* you need an SUV, especially with the 35-mile commute you have? If you have not owned a gas guzzler SUV before, you might want to reconsider.

    A Toyota 4Runner 4wd gets 18mpg mixed driving (city/hwy)...on good days. It's a gas hog no matter how you slice it. Assuming you drive 450 miles/week and get 18mpg, at $3/gallon you're going to spend $75/week on gas. At $4 gallon (which is where we are headed) you will spend $100/week on gas.

    Coming from a Subaru WRX, you'll be very disappointed in the slow acceleration of the 4Runner...so you'll probably be a lead foot. And being a lead foot with an SUV is *really* painful at the pump. That 18mpg can shoot down to 12 if you stomp on the accelerator. Or less.

    Now contrast that against a more fuel efficient "SUV-wanna-be" such as a Saturn Vue or Subaru Forester, both of which get mid-20's mixed city/hwy, and you're going to save a lot of money in gas. Assuming 24mpg, you'd save appx $20/wk at $3/gallon and $25/wk at $4/gallon (or $80/mo and $100/mo).

    And that's just gas. With an SUV, everything costs more...especially wear items like tires and brakes.

    Now if you *need* the SUV for towing or serious off-roading, then that's one thing. Get one. I own a 21' ski boat so I *have* to drive an SUV if I want to continue to own the boat. Is my SUV (a Tahoe) nice to have for camping/4wheeling? Absolutely! But on the 300+ days per year that I use it to shuttle myself around the city, it sucks. Big time.

    On the other hand, if you just want a fun car that can go camping, haul your bikes, and get you to work, seriously consider one of those "SUV-wanna-be's".

    If you are thinking about doing some serious off-roading, another option is to get a cheaper car for your daily commute and bike hauling...and then get a REAL 4x4 for off-roading, such as an old Bronco, Toyota FJ40, or International Scout. Those old trucks are easy to customize and can be made to be far more capable than the 4Runner (push that 4Runner too hard and you'll easily snap axles, bend sheet metal, etc). Plus you can have fun on the weekend...dent the crap out of the old truck...and still have a nice clean car to take to work the next day. There is nothing worse than having fun in the SUV on the weekend and having to spend hours on a Sunday night trying to get all the mud off.

    Thx...Doug

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by dgangi
    Are you *sure* you need an SUV, especially with the 35-mile commute you have? If you have not owned a gas guzzler SUV before, you might want to reconsider.

    A Toyota 4Runner 4wd gets 18mpg mixed driving (city/hwy)...on good days. It's a gas hog no matter how you slice it. Assuming you drive 450 miles/week and get 18mpg, at $3/gallon you're going to spend $75/week on gas. At $4 gallon (which is where we are headed) you will spend $100/week on gas.

    Coming from a Subaru WRX, you'll be very disappointed in the slow acceleration of the 4Runner...so you'll probably be a lead foot. And being a lead foot with an SUV is *really* painful at the pump. That 18mpg can shoot down to 12 if you stomp on the accelerator. Or less.

    Now contrast that against a more fuel efficient "SUV-wanna-be" such as a Saturn Vue or Subaru Forester, both of which get mid-20's mixed city/hwy, and you're going to save a lot of money in gas. Assuming 24mpg, you'd save appx $20/wk at $3/gallon and $25/wk at $4/gallon (or $80/mo and $100/mo).

    And that's just gas. With an SUV, everything costs more...especially wear items like tires and brakes.

    Now if you *need* the SUV for towing or serious off-roading, then that's one thing. Get one. I own a 21' ski boat so I *have* to drive an SUV if I want to continue to own the boat. Is my SUV (a Tahoe) nice to have for camping/4wheeling? Absolutely! But on the 300+ days per year that I use it to shuttle myself around the city, it sucks. Big time.

    On the other hand, if you just want a fun car that can go camping, haul your bikes, and get you to work, seriously consider one of those "SUV-wanna-be's".

    If you are thinking about doing some serious off-roading, another option is to get a cheaper car for your daily commute and bike hauling...and then get a REAL 4x4 for off-roading, such as an old Bronco, Toyota FJ40, or International Scout. Those old trucks are easy to customize and can be made to be far more capable than the 4Runner (push that 4Runner too hard and you'll easily snap axles, bend sheet metal, etc). Plus you can have fun on the weekend...dent the crap out of the old truck...and still have a nice clean car to take to work the next day. There is nothing worse than having fun in the SUV on the weekend and having to spend hours on a Sunday night trying to get all the mud off.

    Thx...Doug
    Du yu wannabe a suv salesman?

  24. #24
    Fragile - must be Italian
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    Quote Originally Posted by yetisurly
    Du yu wannabe a suv salesman?
    Sure...I've always aspired to be a poor slob. They can't give SUV's away these days.

    Thx...Doug

  25. #25
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    Good point, but what will the cost of having a second vehicle both in maintenance and insurance cost? I think Maintenance and insurance will exceed the $80/month savings in gas.

    To answer your question, yes I am getting into off-roading around the valley first and then to places like Moab where I already bike each year. I don't own a boat nor do I ever plan to. I also do backwoods camping but have always had someone in the group with a 4x4 already.

    Its things too think about, but I am already past the point in my life where I like having the small fast car. I neither race the WRX or drive fast anymore. It's merely a small car that gets decent gas mileage, but is completely impractical.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by GueroAZ
    Good point, but what will the cost of having a second vehicle both in maintenance and insurance cost? I think Maintenance and insurance will exceed the $80/month savings in gas.

    To answer your question, yes I am getting into off-roading around the valley first and then to places like Moab where I already bike each year. I don't own a boat nor do I ever plan to. I also do backwoods camping but have always had someone in the group with a 4x4 already.

    Its things too think about, but I am already past the point in my life where I like having the small fast car. I neither race the WRX or drive fast anymore. It's merely a small car that gets decent gas mileage, but is completely impractical.
    If you go the 2-car route, it's not about saving $$ at the pump. It's about owning 2 vehicles for the price of the 4Runner and having the best of both worlds -- an economical runabout car for the city (such as a Civic) and a tough durable truck for the backwoods (such as an old FJ40).

    My buddies are hard-core 4x4 nuts. They would never dream of dragging a newish 4Runner through the crap that they put their old Broncos, Jeeps, and FJ40's through. 4Runners have horrendous approach and departure angles...as do most all new SUV's. 4Runners have terrible ground clearance, as do most all new SUV's (lots of parts dangle below the frame...bad). 4Runners are quite fragile -- get that truck suspended on 2 wheels, hit the gas, and SNAP goes the axle (or you burn out the limited slip differential). Plus independent front suspension (IFS) is not desirable off-road. You want solid axles to give the best articulation.

    Anyway, it's just something to think about. If you *really* want to get into the 4x4 scene...rock crawling...backwoods stuff...mudding...the 4Runner is the wrong tool for the job. You'll be much happier in an old modified truck with a roll cage.

    Thx...Doug

  27. #27
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    I am not getting into serious rock crawling. That is a bit extreme. I wanted something that would allow me to drive on 60-70% of the 4x4 trails out there as well as providing a ton of utility around town, dragging the bike(s) around, camping, Rocky Point, etc. I am not going to beat the holy hell out of it but would like to much more than just flat well groomed dirt roads that I rally the subaru on. I have a couple friends that use 4Runners off-roading and they swear by them plus consumer reports swears by that vehile.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by GueroAZ
    I am not getting into serious rock crawling. That is a bit extreme. I wanted something that would allow me to drive on 60-70% of the 4x4 trails out there as well as providing a ton of utility around town, dragging the bike(s) around, camping, Rocky Point, etc. I am not going to beat the holy hell out of it but would like to much more than just flat well groomed dirt roads that I rally the subaru on. I have a couple friends that use 4Runners off-roading and they swear by them plus consumer reports swears by that vehile.
    I hear 'ya. Toyota makes the best vehicles IMHO, so I'm not bashing the 4Runner as an SUV. I was just commenting on any new SUV's for "true" 4WD use (what they built SUV's in the 70's to do).

    Sounds like for your purposes the 4Runner will be a great fit. Like I said in my first post, I own a Tahoe and for the things you mention...camping, "light/moderate" 4wd, skiing, etc...it's great. Just be forewarned about the MPG though. It sucks. And don't rule out how much it will suck at $4/gallon...or even $5/gallon...or more if we go to war with Iran

    Thx...Doug

  29. #29
    Kathleen in AZ
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    Quote Originally Posted by dgangi
    I hear 'ya. Toyota makes the best vehicles IMHO, so I'm not bashing the 4Runner as an SUV. I was just commenting on any new SUV's for "true" 4WD use (what they built SUV's in the 70's to do).

    Sounds like for your purposes the 4Runner will be a great fit. Like I said in my first post, I own a Tahoe and for the things you mention...camping, "light/moderate" 4wd, skiing, etc...it's great. Just be forewarned about the MPG though. It sucks. And don't rule out how much it will suck at $4/gallon...or even $5/gallon...or more if we go to war with Iran

    Thx...Doug
    Solution is to get the 4Runner for recreational needs and a motorcycle for the daily commute! Or better yet, ride a bicycle to work.

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    I put my bike on the back of my 4Runner, on my hitch rack. It swings away when I need to get in the back hatch. It mounts/dismounts in the hitch easily and quickly. Solves the garage door problem for those of us that can be absent minded at times.

  31. #31
    Dirty Monkey
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    If you were inclined for the back....

    The top is not a good place. Only takes once. Have a friend who crumpled a frame by hitting a cover he thought he was going to clear, slow motion even. Back is safe, no wheel to take off and maybe forget, as has been done on more than a couple posts on here. The Sportworks swings up when not being used, put a bike on it securely in less than 10 seconds, and they do not dangle down, fully supported. Here is 17K+ in downhill rigs, 4 hrs each way to Sunrise and back, on my truck. I think my friends trust my rack:
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  32. #32
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    Is that your final answer?

    Are you absolutely resolved to the two choices listed?

    Does your criteria exclude vehicles like the Honda Element or Chrysler PT Cruiser?
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  33. #33
    more beers, lees gears.
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    if you plan on doing off roading, I would go for an exterra. Read any 4 wheel magazine or other auto magazine, most love the exterra for its abilities, and how fun it is to drive.

  34. #34
    more beers, lees gears.
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    we bought a Pontiac Vibe GT. It gets 31 mph, with the AC on, running Premium gas, and has 190hp. I have two rocky mounts on top, and love the thing. No offroading though.

  35. #35
    It rains here. :(
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtluvraz
    The top is not a good place. Only takes once. Have a friend who crumpled a frame by hitting a cover he thought he was going to clear, slow motion even. Back is safe, no wheel to take off and maybe forget, as has been done on more than a couple posts on here. The Sportworks swings up when not being used, put a bike on it securely in less than 10 seconds, and they do not dangle down, fully supported. Here is 17K+ in downhill rigs, 4 hrs each way to Sunrise and back, on my truck. I think my friends trust my rack:

    Any issues with the rack and your 29'r? I got the same rack as you and I want to forsee any issues if I go and buy the 29'r.

  36. #36
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    Theres not a day that goes by that I dont miss my WRX. I sold it last fall, and got a used Ford Exploder. I bolted some fork mounts through the floor in the back, and that works great. The only problem that you may have is that your seat will hit the ceiling if you have it set high, or have a big frame/big travel fork. I'll try to remember to take a picture when I get home from work.

  37. #37
    It rains here. :(
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    Quote Originally Posted by GueroAZ
    Its things too think about, but I am already past the point in my life where I like having the small fast car. I neither race the WRX or drive fast anymore. It's merely a small car that gets decent gas mileage, but is completely impractical.

    I hear you on this, and for this same reason I got rid of my Saab 9-2X. I got horrible gas mileage (could be due to lead foot conditions), and it was really just too small.

    Plus in case anyone cares to know, the WRX/Saab 9-2X is one of the worst cars as far as insurance costs, not to mention who likes paying for 91 octane fuel?

  38. #38
    Dirty Monkey
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    Quote Originally Posted by Umbrous
    Any issues with the rack and your 29'r? I got the same rack as you and I want to forsee any issues if I go and buy the 29'r.
    None whatsoever. Sat will have mine and Konapdlr's on it, if you want to see first-hand how they work on there!
    "May The Schwartz Be With You!"

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Evil Patrick
    Are you absolutely resolved to the two choices listed?

    Does your criteria exclude vehicles like the Honda Element or Chrysler PT Cruiser?
    I went through the Consumer Reports car guide 2006 and looked at all vehicles. I am still single so the Element is out (it's horribly ugly sorry no offense if you own one it's just my opinion) and I won't buy an American car. A friend of mine bought a Charger and had to replace the whole engine after 5k miles. My dad's Impala already has a shorted electrical system after 30k miles and he drives it just 100 miles a week. The quality just isn't there anymore.

    I looked at all 4x4 vehicles and came up with the list of 2 based on off-road capability, gas mileage, reliability, and on-road drivability. I would use the fork moun most of the time but would probaly spring for the hitch rack for the first road trip I take with the bike.

    I haven't bought the vehicle yet, since I am having trouble springing for an SUV that chews gas. Gas is still cheap imo (after spending time in Europe we have it good), ethically I am having trouble justifying driving a car that gets just 18 mpg. Plus I have been to hell and back in the WRX, but there comes a time when you have to put at least a few of your toys away.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by BShow
    Theres not a day that goes by that I dont miss my WRX.
    I am going to miss having that surge of power when passing on the freeway, the ability to turn any corner with speed, the ability to slide it in almost any parking spot, and especially after cheap mods having a sub-14 second 1/4 mile car. Plus there is a WRX community out there for support if something goes wrong. It was damn fun on PIR race days.

  41. #41
    Fragile - must be Italian
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    Quote Originally Posted by GueroAZ
    I am going to miss having that surge of power when passing on the freeway, the ability to turn any corner with speed, the ability to slide it in almost any parking spot, and especially after cheap mods having a sub-14 second 1/4 mile car. Plus there is a WRX community out there for support if something goes wrong. It was damn fun on PIR race days.
    Yep - you're doing a total 180 going from a WRX to a 4Runner. When I got my Tahoe, I came from a 1995 Saturn SC2 coupe...so I was is a similar situation -- little dinky sports coupe to a big waffling truck.

    Think of it this way...

    The WRX can do 140+ mph safely. The 4Runner...maybe 110, and it's really unsafe at anything above 90mph. And most of the time those big tires get out of balance, so speeds above 75mph can get "shaky".

    The WRX can stop from 60 mph in probably 140 feet. A 4Runner needs at least 50% more distance. While this may not sound too bad at first, drive around town in an SUV and you will realize how much you miss that short stopping distance.

    The WRX can do .9+g on a skidpad. 4Runners...maybe .75g...maybe. As you said, you could turn the WRX at any speed (like a go-kart). For me this was the hardest part of going from a sports coupe to a truck.

    Handling at speed? The WRX can flick itself around in lanes. Do that same maneuver in an SUV and you'll roll it. I used to do lane maneuvers in my Saturn all the time (zig-zag through traffic). No more in the Tahoe - I stay put.

    Speaking of tipsy...can you roll a WRX? Probably impossible. 4Runners (and most SUV's) are highly prone to rollovers. Initially it's a spooky feeling. I still have that fear in the back of my head with the Tahoe.

    Maybe you want to rent an SUV for a few weeks before you buy one. After living with my SC2 for 4 years, going to the truck was a shock for me. The *only* reason I bought it was because I bought a boat. Had that never happened, I would own a BMW M3 now instead of the Tahoe. My wife's car is a Lexus GS300, and when I get the chance to drive it I am reminded just how much I hate driving SUV's.

    Thx...Doug

  42. #42
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    here is the setup i have in my explorer 2 door.



    As you can see, there is not much room here with my high seated hardtail and 100mm fork. I have the second fork mount for my GF mostly. I squeezed three bikes into the back the other day with one seat still usable. I used both fork mounts and bungied the third bike to the oh sh!t handle to keep it from moving around. The girl in the back seat had plenty of room.

    Not to jack the thread, What did you do to the WRX? I was cobb stage 2 with catless exhaust, and various other minor mods. I loved that car.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by dgangi
    Speaking of tipsy...can you roll a WRX? Probably impossible.
    Actually, it can be done. Here is proof:

    http://www.wrxfanatics.com/index.php...6206&hl=rolled

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by BShow
    Actually, it can be done. Here is proof:

    http://www.wrxfanatics.com/index.php...6206&hl=rolled
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  45. #45
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    I had a Cobb Stage 2 via accessport with the Cobb exhaust (cat). I personally did a 13.5 down at Firebird minus reaction time of course.

    I have a 29er so I don't know how that would affect clearance in the back. I will pull the front wheel off and check height and just take a tape measure with me and test drive the 4Runners again.

    I would have the car by now if the bank wouldn't take its sweet old time with the home equity line closing.

  46. #46
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    I have had a 02 Xterra and I now own a 05 4Runner Sport V8. The 4Runner is without a doubt the best vehicle I have ever owned. I have a lead foot and average 16.5 to 17 mpg. The sport package drives like a car on the freeway and handles fine off-road. The Xterra was better off-road but doesn’t have half of the on-road handling skills that the 4Runner has.

  47. #47
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    I have a 2003 4Runner. The dealer let me take it home for the test ride to make sure my bike would fit inside.

    I'm too short to reach a roof rack, too scared to strap my back on the back (hitch rack), and too lazy to fiddle with removing seatposts and/or front wheels. i put the whole bike in the back laying on its side with everything attached. easy in, easy out. i don't have any friends so no need to worry about leaving space for them or their bikes in the back !

    bikes aside, i love this truck so much that if i crash it, i will go buy another one without even shopping around.

  48. #48
    The Uber Carnivore
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    ultimate combo

    05/06 Xterra + Sportworks T2.

    Love mine.

  49. #49
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    Anyone know if a bike will fit in the back of the new Toyota FJ Cruiser? The lack of fold-flat seats in the back is a bummer.

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