4x4 AnswerMan: Unique 4x4s, Diesel Half-Ton Trucks and More

Sep. 13, 2016 By Jaime Hernandez
The International MXT (Military/Most Extreme Truck) is based on the International MXT-MV 4x4 military truck. It was only produced from 2006 to 2008. The MXT is powered by a Navistar VT365 V8 diesel engine (300 hp), matted to a 5-speed Allison 2000 transmission, and it has a GVWR that ranges from 14,000 to 18,000 lbs.

Have a truck or SUV question for the 4x4 AnswerMan? Send your questions to [email protected]. Please include your name and location, and be as detailed as possible about your questions.

Previous 4x4 Answerman Columns
July 2016 

May 2016

March 2016

“Like” us on Social Media for the latest off-road news and developments.
Instagram 

Facebook 

Google+ 

Twitter


FORD’S DIESEL 1/2-TON PICKUP
It’s no secret that many pickup owners are chomping at the bit to jump into a diesel-powered truck. When news recently broke on Off-Road.com about a diesel powered Ford F-150, it was interesting to see what readers had to say about the option.

twinstick1 says, “Haven't had a pickup in over 27 years. I might be in the market for one a little later on.” GRS62 is on the fence, “because all that weight saving aluminum didn't change the fact that the F150 has horrible EPA numbers, no matter what the sticker says.” Skillet isn’t impressed with the possible fuel savings and prefers what RAM has to offer. “A hemi with the 8 speed gets almost 21 mpgs on the hwy, I know I have one.”

What do you think about a diesel powered 1/2-ton Ford F-150. Would you drive it? Let us know by commenting below.

You can also read the full story at F-150 Diesel: Images Confirm Ford Turbo-Diesel Engine
 

--

DAYTIME RUNNING LIGHTS OUT

4x4 AnswerMan,

The daytime running lights stopped working on my 2007 Toyota Tundra. What should I look for? I changed the light bulbs but it didn’t fix it. Very frustrating.

Sam

Hi Sam,

Since you already checked the bulbs, the next thing to check is the DRL fuse. Even if it looks good, replace it with a new one to see if that fixes it.  If this doesn’t do it, the DRL flasher module may need to be replaced.  It’s located under the dash on the driver’s side.  It should set you back around $50. If this doesn’t resolve the issue, you may need to take it in to the dealership for a check up.

Good luck!

--

BFGOODRICH RUGGED TERRAIN T/A

Off-Road.com,

Love them [BFGs], going to buy another set when these wear out. Used on RAM 2500 diesel to haul fifth wheel - great on highway, good in snow, good mileage, available in load range E, Ok off road. They're getting a little louder as they wear but all tires do.
Brutal

Letter sparked by Riding Impression: BFGoodrich Rugged Terrain T/A Tire

Hi Brutal,

Great to hear you’ve had a good run on your BFGs. They sure make a great tire. We’ve had nothing but luck with ours over the years. If you’re looking for something with a little more off-road traction, you should definitely check out the new BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2. They offer an updated tread design, improved off-road traction and on-road handling when compared to the previous generation. The K02 also has 20% stronger sidewalls and 15% thread wear improvement on road compared to the first KO.

You can check out the full story at Testing the New BFGoodrich All-Terrain T/A KO2 



--

WOMEN IN OFF-ROAD RACING

Off-Road.com,

Would liked to have seen 1983 and 1984 Pikes Peak Open winner Michele Mouton receive some accolades as well as Jean Calvin who did more than any of those listed in the promotion of off road racing. Nice article, though!
Larry Worsham

Letter sparked by Women of Competitive Off-Road Racing, Part 2  


Hi Larry,

Thanks for bringing Michele Mouton to the round table of women in off-road racing. Pikes Peak is one of the great races of the world.  You’re right, Michelle does kick ass.  She was the first woman to win and also set the fastest time record in 1985 driving her Audi Quattro rally car up Pikes Peak.

The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is the second oldest auto race in the U.S. with a 12.42-mile course that consist of 156 turns and climbs to an elevation of 14,115 ft. You can learn more at http://www.ppihc.com/.

--

3.4L TOYOTA CHECK ENGINE CODE

How’s it goin? I would first like to thank you for taking the time to help us Yota diehards...  Anyhow I am a bit lost, maybe you've seen this code before or perhaps not. 1996 T100 SR5, 3.4 , Automatic.

Eric

Hi Eric,

Glad to be of help. 1996 Toyota trucks were equipped with an OBD-II plug underneath the dashboard. It’s simple to pull the trouble code with an OBD-II scanner tool. 

You may have also found the E1/TE1 plugs under the hood. You could run the old jumper cable test if you don’t have access to a scan tool. Here’s a link to a site dedicated to trouble codes with instructions on how to run the E1/TE1 test on a T100.

--

TOYOTA’S 2017 4RUNNER TRD OFF-ROAD

Toyota recently announced their new 2017 4Runner TRD Off-Road model.  Many of our readers were mixed on the news. There was nothing ground breaking--like a more powerful turbo V6, eight-speed automatic transmission, or even a diesel offering. Instead they got new badges.  Although the 4Runner continues to be a great choice for those looking for a daily driver that can double as an adventure rig, 4Runner fans still want more.

Off-Road.com reader Dez says, “Toyota needs to unveil the 6th Gen; not some re-badged. I have a 2012 Limited 4WD with 73K miles on it. First, the truck is under-powered with 270HP and 278 torque trying to pull over 4,600lbs. Worse, the underpowered engine is mated with a 5-speed transmission (this engine needs at least a 7-speed transmission). To top it off, it only gets 16.8 MPG mixed city and HWY…and that’s WITH a K&N performance air filter.”

RB isn’t happy with the lack of a Toyota diesel offering for North America.  “We can thank the radical ideologues running the EPA and CARB for no diesel option in North American Toyotas. Toyotas in every other part of the world run on diesels, or at least have the option.” 

Even JEB chimes in (no relation to Bush), “Sadly, after owning 4Runners since 2004, I’m having to look at other vehicle because of the absence of the V8. I need to tow and as great a motor as the 4.0 is, it has its limitations when towing much more than 3K in the hills. Toyota, put the V8 back in and I’m in line once again.”

Would adding a V8 or diesel engine option to the new Toyota lineup make you consider buying one of these SUVs? Let us know by commenting below.

You can read the whole story at Toyota Unveils Two 2017 4Runner TRD Off-Road Models 

--

BRAKE SQUEAK

4x4 AnswerMan,

My brakes squeak when I step on them. The funny thing is that I recently replaced the brake pads on my truck. What did I do wrong?

Thanks,
Doug

Hi Doug,

Re-visit the brake assembly to make sure everything was installed correctly.  We’ve also found that using synthetic caliper grease works great on keeping the squeaking or vibration to a minimum.  It was recommended to us by a good mechanic that works on trucks and Jeeps.  We apply it on the back of the pads and slider pins.  No brake noise with this secret sauce.

--

TOYOTA WHEELS FIT GM TRUCKS?

Hi Off-Road.com,

I have an 89 GMC suburban 4x4, my problem is 15in tires and wheels. The cost of tires in my area expensive, and nobody has used. I have been told Toyota 16in wheels will fit. If this is true, I have tires from my 93 Chevy 2500 p/u. Please let me, and others know the answer.

Thanks,
Mike


Hi Mike,

A 16-inch Toyota wheel with 6 x 5.5" bolt pattern should fit your 1989 GM Suburban 4x4, as long as it is also a 6 lug. GM K1500 from 1988 to 1998 have a 6 x 5.5" bolt pattern.  You should also check the backspacing, to make sure the suspension and brakes have enough clearance to rotate freely.

Since you also mentioned a 2500 pickup, those run 8-lug wheels.

Good luck.

--

TRAIL REPAIRS

Off-Road.com,

Did the bushing trick with electrical tape. I had to use the whole role, but it's been on there for two years. 
Patrick

Letter sparked by Trail Hacks: Recent 4x4 Fixes That Got Us Back to Camp


Hi Patrick,

Glad to hear of yet another successful McGyver vehicle trail repair using minimal resources. It’s amazing what can be done with a little tape and some ingenuity. I personally also like to carry bailing wire and spare parts for such an occasion. It’s gotten us out of a few jams.

You may also like to read Trail Tips: Avoid "Trail Prices" – Take Spare Parts 
 

--

RAV 4 LIFT

Off-Road.com,

I have a 2007 Toyota RAV 4, and I would like as much info on lifting it to get just a little better ground clearance and tires.

Thanks in advance,
Ralph

Hi Ralph,

You’re best bet is to look at ARB. They have a suspension lift kit made specifically for your vehicle that will yield 1 to 2 inches of lift plus extra weight carrying capacity. Make sure to check out Rav4 Crawler: Old Man Emu Suspension Lift.

--

COOPERS WEAR DOWN?

Off-Road.com,

Cooper tires are great besides the fact they wear quickly. I had the STT on my 2012 Chevrolet 4 door and I only got 15K out of them. A few of my buddies had the same results that ran them. 
Bryce

Letter sparked by Cooper Discoverer STT PRO Review 
 

Hi Bryce,

Thanks for sharing. We’ve gotten over 20K miles and counting on our Coopers by practicing some simple tire maintenance tips:

Tire Inflation
You can significantly increase thread life by inflating your tires to the manufacturer’s specified P.S.I. It’s a good idea to check them weekly to make sure they are fully pumped. The best time to check is when the tires are cold. You can also help keep a more consistent P.S.I. by running nitrogen instead of air.

Tire Rotation is an important task that many of us forget to do. Rotating tires will increase the life of the tire and is recommended every 6,000 to 8,000 or at 6-month intervals (which ever comes first).

Alignment
If your tires are wearing excessively fast, there may be a wheel alignment issue. Have the suspension checked and vehicle wheel alignment done to ensure you get the best thread wear possible.

Thread Design
The more aggressive the tire, the faster they tend to wear down. High-void tires like mud terrain tires may also use a softer rubber compound, which will lead to a much shorter thread life. This may be okay if your main use is off-road.

Load Range
Light truck tires come in different sizes and load ratings. Make sure you are running the correct Load Range for your vehicle and application. For example, a Load Range C tire will not fare so well on a heavy diesel pickup, especially if you plan on hauling or towing heavy loads (it’s also not safe). The Load Range is designated by a letter and specifies the load carrying capacity and tire inflation to achieve max rating. 

Many of the leading tire manufacturers have informative application guides that take Year, Make, Model into account when pairing you up with the right tire for your vehicle. Discount Tires has a good application guide to work with, as does 4 Wheel Parts.

Good luck.

Have a truck or SUV question for the 4x4 AnswerMan? Send your questions to [email protected]. Please include your name and location, and be as detailed as possible about your questions.

Previous 4x4 Answerman Columns
July 2016

May 2016 

March 2016 

“Like” us on Social Media for the latest off-road news and developments.
Instagram 

Facebook 

Google+ 

Twitter


Off-Road.com Newsletter
Join our Weekly Newsletter to get the latest off-road news, reviews, events, and alerts!