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Old 7th September 2021, 11:10   #151
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Default Re: Overland trips from Bangalore

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Other than the infamous DSG failures, are automatics that unreliable? In the overlanding videos from the west (mostly from the US), one sees that a majority of the vehicles are automatic. I believe the transition will happen here too.
An expedition vehicle is supposed to go where the infrastructure is minimal, if at all. Any repairs have to be carried out by the crew.

In US most of the vehicle are automatic, hence there is a large support base there. In contrast here in India though urban areas are no problem, the support for vehicle that have automatic transmission is very scanty in the remote areas.

Secondly unlike automatic transmission, manual transmission requires less elaborate workshop, so easier to repair (if you get the parts!).
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Old 8th September 2021, 15:08   #152
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Secondly unlike automatic transmission, manual transmission requires less elaborate workshop, so easier to repair (if you get the parts!).
My thought is that auto-Transmission failure is pretty rare if the transmission fluids are maintained well. One will have to prepare for overlanding trips with checks.

The automatic makes driving relaxed and even on rough roads, the gear change headaches taken away. Worth the overhead, any day. Actually any major failure will need recovery anyway. Thankfully the distances in India are not as bad as US or Australia (e.g.) for getting it to a dealership. Its a pain of course with associated complexity of leaving the vehicle abandoned for a few days etc. till it can be recovered.
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Old 16th September 2021, 20:57   #153
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Default Re: Overland trips from Bangalore

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My thought is that auto-Transmission failure is pretty rare if the transmission fluids are maintained well. One will have to prepare for overlanding trips with checks.

Manual tranny gives you more control over rpm, over traction, over up and down slopes. Manual tranny and clutch are generally much easier to find parts for and fix.

I have had several of both and I prefer manual. If I was constantly in stop and go traffic I might consider auto but I am not. I also doubt that there are many knowledgeable auto tranny mechanics in India. Servicing an auto tranny in India may be a headache.
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Old 17th September 2021, 13:20   #154
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Manual tranny gives you more control over rpm, over traction, over up and down slopes. Manual tranny and clutch are generally much easier to find parts for and fix.
You are right, but I have become lazy driving an automatic all these years. My last manual was when I had a Skoda Laura 2006 to 2010
I also dread that me or my co driver will burn up the clutch on hill roads trying to optimize the gear ratios, without extensive experience. I have seen many people doing it so wrong.

During my last overland tour in a manual xenon 4x2 2020 Dec around meghalaya, I remember having sore left leg and arm at the end of each day's driving. In a way, I am throwing money at the problem and buying comfort.
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Old 17th September 2021, 14:10   #155
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Default Re: Building an Expedition Vehicle

This week's update on the expedition vehicle build plans:

Spent much of my free time agonizing and ranting about why Toyota hasn't announced the Hilux already. Tweeted to them and still no news. Its 2021 festival season and they are awfully silent if they have any plans to launch in Sept-Oct time-frame. Whats frustrating is that I see quite a few interested folks that would go for Hilux, on twitter and YouTube. Does Toyota look at these reactions and do the right customer surveys? Wouldn't it help sales if they create a special interest group and interact with people? When are we going to get our car dealers and manufacturers actually showing interest and understanding. Basic marketing 101, sadly missing in this case, in comparison to US, Australia EU etc.


I am getting a lot of feedback from experienced folks that the Thar 2020 will be too small for practical overland applications. So I called the dealership on getting my booking cancelled. Sad to let go but I guess I have to.

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Old 18th September 2021, 23:30   #156
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Default Re: Building an Expedition Vehicle

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This week's update on the expedition vehicle build plans:

I am getting a lot of feedback from experienced folks that the Thar 2020 will be too small for practical overland applications. So I called the dealership on getting my booking cancelled. Sad to let go but I guess I have to.

regards
I tend to agree with most, Thar though has many benefits but wonít be spacious as a overlanding vehicle.

On the contrary the new Gurkha sure blows some serious advantages over Thar. It is wider, it is longer, spacious than any SWB vehicle on sale at the moment. Plus everything is derived from Mercedes which gives a little edge over others. Worth giving a shot, IMHO.
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Old 20th September 2021, 15:18   #157
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... Plus everything is derived from Mercedes which gives a little edge over others. Worth giving a shot, IMHO.
A couple of years back Force put a Mercedes diesel in the Gurkha. They have since discarded this fine Mercedes diesel and gone back to their 2.6L 90hp and that puppy just ain't a 140hp Mercedes.

This coupled with a number of horror stories told right here on this site about poor Force parts, service and unwillingness to honor their own warranties....well, I love the idea of this vehicle but Force's shabby execution of their Engineer's good ideas is not enough to get me to ride the rapids with Force.

Love the boxy toughness of it, love the differential locks, love the basic idea behind it, love the driver position and ergonomics. But don't love it as a purchase. Funny thing, if you talk to Force Traveller dealers, they treat Gurkha owners like they own an entirely differently made vehicle. Traveller dealers don't want to hear the name "Gurkha", they don't want any Gurkhas to arrive at their shops....Gurkhas don't exist. The Gurkha is an unwanted step child.

I have this recurring nightmare. A team of Tibetan Yak drivers is towing my snow covered Gurkha via Yak team down from Rohtang pass after finally recovering my broke down Gurkha which has been lodged in a snow drift near Zing Zing Bar for 2.5 years. They had to wrestle it away from a Tibetan lady who tried to make it into a planter.

Last edited by DirtyDan : 20th September 2021 at 15:31.
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Old 20th September 2021, 16:56   #158
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Default Re: Building an Expedition Vehicle

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This week's update on the expedition vehicle build plans:

Spent much of my free time agonizing and ranting about why Toyota hasn't announced the Hilux already. Tweeted to them and still no news. Its 2021 festival season and they are awfully silent if they have any plans to launch in Sept-Oct time-frame. Whats frustrating is that I see quite a few interested folks that would go for Hilux, on twitter and YouTube.
Why do you want to go for the Toyota Hilux and not the Isuzu V-Cross? Worldwide, the Isuzus are as reliable as the Toyotas and they have great reputation for longevity. I see a lot of Isuzu pickups here in the UK. I have spoken to few owners and they are extremely happy. At one point I was contemplating to get the Isuzu D-Max AT35 (https://www.autoexpress.co.uk/isuzu/...-trucks-review)

Building an Expedition Vehicle-screenshot-20210920-12.29.22.png

Last edited by BlackPearl : 20th September 2021 at 17:03.
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Old 20th September 2021, 19:05   #159
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Default Re: Building an Expedition Vehicle

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Why do you want to go for the Toyota Hilux and not the Isuzu V-Cross?
Isuzu does have a good global recognition for being a tough vehicle. My gripe with them in India is that do not have the new model of the vcross and are flogging their 2015 versions in India for a premium price. If the hilux is not announced in the next month i will relook at them seriously again.

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Old 21st September 2021, 23:14   #160
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A couple of years back Force put a Mercedes diesel in the Gurkha. They have since discarded this fine Mercedes diesel and gone back to their 2.6L 90hp and that puppy just ain't a 140hp Mercedes.

This coupled with a number of horror stories told right here on this site about poor Force parts, service and unwillingness to honor their own warranties....

Love the boxy toughness of it, love the differential locks, love the basic idea behind it, love the driver position and ergonomics. But don't love it as a purchase.
Well your observations are spot on, I know 3 Gurkha owners here in Ahmedabad and have seen their struggles with the Force ASC in getting simple jobs done. Sticking to the 2.6 Motor that too at a tune of 90 horses is beyond any reasoning as to why they canít tune the engine for better performance when 140bhp motor was there in BS4. Moreover the hills and rural part of the country is dominated by Mahindras so any day a Thar is a better buy.

However, still Force has put down efforts in the new Gurkha apart from the engine though thereís a still plenty of room for improvement. But all of this boils down to how will they price it, the older Gurkha was exorbitantly priced with what it was offering that too with Force dealers non interest in selling a Gurkha was big let down. This was the very reason why I picked up a Thar CRDe 700 edition over the Gurkha in 2019. While Mahindra dealers made all the efforts to ensure the deal is done, force dealers just didnít show any interest.
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Old 22nd September 2021, 11:15   #161
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Default Re: Building an Expedition Vehicle

For the Isuzu: there is one reason I wouldn't suggest it to folks who would also do a bit of offroading while overlanding.

When the steering is at full lock (for example to the right) and the right wheel dips into a ditch or on full articulation where the right wheel hangs, the CV joint pops out of the wheel.

I have personally seen his happen in 2 VCRosses and heard about 3 more cases.

5 cases is a bit too much in my opinion.

So whoever comes to learn offroad with me in a VCROSS we advice no full locks and avoid a full extension of the suspension. I've also suggested to these people to put in limiters for the suspension so that inadvertently they don't face the issues.

Otherwise the company charges 30-40k for replacement of the entire half shaft.

Last edited by Aditya : 1st October 2021 at 21:04. Reason: As requested
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Old 22nd September 2021, 16:38   #162
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Default Re: Building an Expedition Vehicle

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For the Isuzu: there is one reason I wouldn't suggest it to folks who would also do a bit of offroading while overlanding.

When the steering is at full lock (for example to the right) and the right wheel dips into a ditch or on full articulation where the right wheel hangs, the CV joint pops out of the wheel.

I have personally seen his happen in 2 VCRosses and heard about 3 more cases.

5 cases is a bit too much in my opinion.
Hmmm....I would have thought that Isuzu would have fixed that problem and even had a recall. That sort of thing would not be tolerated in North America. There would be fast lawsuits and the enforcement of "lemon laws". Isuzu enjoys a pretty good reputation world-wide especially for their tradition of fine diesel motors, a tradition which goes all the way back to Isuzu large maritime diesel engines...but a motor isn't a CV joint, 'ay? Strikes me as odd that a company with a good rep like Isuzu would let a defect like that slide.

At one point in my misspent youth I was a test driver for Dana Corporation. I got to break a lot of 4x4 trucks on purpose. I broke CV joints and axles all over God's creation in fact. The usual culprit was some production line snafu, some necessary procedure bungled on the assembly line or some tempory fix that wasn't a fix. I wonder if this CV problem has been allowed to persist here in 2021?

Why isn't Maruti into the pickup market, the 4x4 market to a greater degree? The Gypsy and wild success of the Jimny shows that Maruti has the know-how.
Fear of Gov. interference at some later date? Just asking, not stating an opinion on same.
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Old 29th September 2021, 12:44   #163
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Default Re: Building an Expedition Vehicle

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A couple of years back Force put a Mercedes diesel in the Gurkha. They have since discarded this fine Mercedes diesel and gone back to their 2.6L 90hp and that puppy just ain't a 140hp Mercedes.
You describe it as if some tractor engine has been plonked into this car.
The Gurkha has always used a Mercedes engine. The 2.6ltr is a Mercedes-Benz OM616-derived 2.6-litre while the 2.2ltr was a Mercedes-Benz OM611-derived version. Besides that -

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The Mercedes-Benz facility was opened at Chakan, Pune, in June 2016, while the BMW plant in Chennai went onstream in 2015. Force Motors builds and tests engines for BMW's 3, 5, 7, and GT series cars, as well as, X1, X3, and X5 series SUVs made in India.
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Old 1st October 2021, 03:26   #164
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You describe it as if some tractor engine has been plonked into this car.
No, I did not. And, tractor engines can be great. Case in point, the Mahindra MDi3200. This tractor derived engine was a tremendous boon to the Indian economy as it powered thousands upon thousands of light delivery trucks and early SUVs. It was rugged and simple.

I know this is a radical idea but I think a 140 hp Mercedes diesel is probably better than a 90 hp Mercedes diesel for a vehicle of Gurkha's specs. Call it raw dogmatism on my part if you like. As for my comments on Force Gurkha in general, you have only to look at member posts right on this site to find horror story after horror story over many years.

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Old 2nd October 2021, 17:23   #165
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This week's update : Hilux is not coming i guess. Did some digging around with toyota factory friends of friends and they said no plans this year.
So looking at other options now.

Since ford closed shop last week i have been thinking about good deals of the endeavour. A welll kept 4 5 year old one with less miles on it would fit beautifully as a overland rig. I see the aussies and US folks with their everest

So i am thinking seriously of doing a pivot on to getting this SUV. Saw a 2016 Endeavour with 70k on it and in great shape. I am doing research on near future parts availability and repairs to evaluate the cost/benefit of getting this endy as my selected rig. Feedback please...

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