We spent months researching the type of vehicle we wanted to use for our trip from Seattle to Ushuaia. Our research pointed to one vehicle, a 3rd generation Toyota 4Runner. It had the highest reliability ratings for any mid-size SUV and was imported throughout Central and South America, making spare parts easier to find.
Full details on the vehicle and what is included below. There is a article full of recent photos here. We have just written a step-by-step process explaining the completely legal vehicle title transfer process. Please note because of the cost of importing into Argentina this vehicle is ONLY available to foreigners (i.e. Non-residents of Argentina).
The 1997 4Runner is one of Toyota's best-selling sport-utility trucks, you have the comfort of a passenger car with utility truck capabilities.
The 4Runner is secure on pavement and the suspension travel and tread width both improve off-road ability, ride and handling. The on demand four-wheel drive system may be engaged at speeds up to 50 mph giving you added performance when you need it.
The skid plates protect the important underside parts of the 4Runner and with the 16-inch wheels you have a comfortable 10-inches of clearance. Safety features include dual airbags, antilock brakes, and side-door impact protection beams.
The fuel efficient 3.4-liter V6 engine produces 183 horsepower at 4800 rpm and 217 foot-pounds of torque at 3600 rpm, more than enough to tow a fellow overlander up a hill or out of the sand.
(Click links to see our full articles on these installations)
Note on the fridge system: We removed half of the back seat in order to mount our fridge. Just behind the fridge we installed a lock box big enough to hold three 15" laptops. Both the fridge and lock box are removable. There are three comfortable seats in the vehicle. See the articles above for more photos of the platform and the lock box and fridge configuration.
We have a full service history of the work completed after October 2011 available with the car. All previous work including the full service history of the previous owner is at our home in Seattle. Electronic documents can be provided upon request.
(Click links to see Amazon.com description of the item)
The vehcile will be available approximately April 15, 2013 in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
$10,000. USD Not for sale
I know we are going to get this question, "If you love Blue so much, why are you selling?" Well, lots of reasons. First and foremost, there is no inexpensive RORO shipping service to Seattle. The lowest quote we can find is $3,000 for a container, which as you can see, is nearly a third of the cost of our vehicle. We could ship to Miami and drive it back, but the cost of additional flights, a three week delay waiting for shipping, and the 4,000 miles back to Seattle makes the cost nearly the same. Third, our intention is to stay in Seattle for 6 months and then head to South Africa. We don't know for how long Blue might be sitting around waiting for us to return. Paying for a vehicle I'm not going to drive is not so high up on my list of things to do. And so, you have it. We are sad, but Blue has done his job, and done it well. It's time to move on.