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I asked this question when I bought my Land Rover (Discovery II) years ago, and I suppose it got me in lots of trouble (on the upgrade path, worrying about potential problems, etc.)...but all the same...

Any advice for a new owner?

I'll start with a few specific questions and my own "parameters"...

I bought a 2011 Quicksand automatic 4x4, with the off road package, convenience package, and roof rack.

I've read many, many threads on this forum over the years (been looking at FJs for a while...the Land Rover money pit gets to you after a while) and especially over the past week or so.

Coming from the Land Rover, which I not only spent a lot of money maintaining, but also added full OME suspension, bull bar, safari rack, larger than stock Grabber AT2 tires, custom drive shaft, etc., I'm looking forward to keeping the FJ pretty close to stock. I think it's a pretty capable vehicle to begin with, and I'm going to focus on enjoying the Toyota's reliability and better gas mileage. (I was getting 10-12 mpg average on the Disco.)

However, I'd like to know if there are any basic issues I need to watch out for. I know 2011s are pretty new and don't have much of a track record yet, but from what I understand they are very similar to the 2010s.

On what seem like the two most common FJ issues....You can read for days about windshield cracks and fender bulges. Have these problems been resolved/improved with newer models? I get the impression that the fenders, at least, are better reinforced than the first couple of model years?

The one upgrade I had to make immediately was the tires. I've ordered some Nitto Terra Grapplers which I hope to have installed next week. I was tempted to sell the stock steelies and get some alloy 16" wheels, but, sticking to my no (or minimal) upgrades policy, I stayed with the stock wheels and tires size.

The only other thing that my FJ is really missing right now is a tow hitch. I don't pull anything, just need the receiver for a hitch bike rack, and, eventually, maybe a cargo carrier. Any good sources for a reasonably priced OEM hitch?

Finally, on maintenance, my FJ came with ToyotaCare, and so I'll be stopping in to the dealership every 5k miles for a check up and every 10k for an oil change, and asking for a 5-tire rotation. Everyone else stick to this same schedule? It's amazing to me, after the Land Rover, that I may be able to pay this little attention to maintenance, but that's why I bought a Toyota!

Sorry to ramble...any thoughts or advice is appreciated.
 

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I always hear bad things about the Land rover are they really that bad?

I'm still on my first windshield and No fender bulges. Personally I think people drive to close to others and get rock chips because bird poop ain't breaking them and the fender bulge is more than likely from pushing the FJ beyond its limits.

On a side note I was banned from the Land rover dealership for taking my jeep over there 4x4 course:) They weren't cool about it at all very yuppish if thats a word?

Welcome to the site
 

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I always hear bad things about the Land rover are they really that bad?
I loved my Disco. Fun to drive, would go anywhere (anywhere I took it). I pulled a 4x4 Tahoe out of the snow shortly before I traded it in. Great for camping too ... surprising amount of storage space, which I already miss, and huge roof rack.

However...what they say is true. There was always something wrong, something about to go wrong, something preventative that I needed to do or should have done...and, no matter what, it leaked oil. Lots of oil. Couldn't park it in the driveway because I would have had to put down enough cardboard to mask nearly the entire length of the vehicle. I worked hard to take good care of the truck, but with 96,000 miles on a 2002 I was already at the point of ignoring "smaller" problems, like the ceiling fabric falling in, air conditioning squeals, wiper problems, seat controls not working, etc. to focus on bigger issues like the oil leaks and electronic faults in the transmission.

Gas mileage was very poor, though I contributed to some of that with the heavy bumper, raised profile, and roof rack.

I love the look and capabilities of the Land Rovers, and there's a great Land Rover community to rely on for help, but they don't offer much peace of mind. I will miss it though...
 

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I agree, I think they look cool and was just about to buy an LR3 before the FJ then heard really bad things about them like you mentioned above. Land rover Might be a better second vehicle for fun then a daily driver you need to get you from a to b daily without trips to the dealer.
 

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The only other thing that my FJ is really missing right now is a tow hitch. I don't pull anything, just need the receiver for a hitch bike rack, and, eventually, maybe a cargo carrier. Any good sources for a reasonably priced OEM hitch?

Finally, on maintenance, my FJ came with ToyotaCare, and so I'll be stopping in to the dealership every 5k miles for a check up and every 10k for an oil change,
I'm new to the FJ myself so I can't give you much input, as for a OEM hitch I got mine from at Sparks Toyota-Scion, Myrtle Beach, SC a PITA to install but I got it done. Here's a install link, GEORGIA FJ CRUISER - Georgia FJ Cruiser Information and Resources an easier install you could go with 2011 Toyota FJ Cruiser Trailer Hitch | etrailer.com .

If ToyotaCare recommends getting the oil changed every 10K miles I guess I'll be doing my own, Mobil 1 full synthetic motor oil every 5K is what I'll be doing.
 

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I leased an LR3 for 3 years, perfect reliability, great truck. The computer controlled suspension was so complicated though that I was very nervous about owning it once the warranty had expired. Enter the FJ.

Now, back to the main topic. As for windshield rock chips, I got three in one trip from Northern CA to LA. None before or since (2010 TT). So I would say it's luck, not driving style. The windshield definitely gets popped with bugs and debris a lot more than other vehicles.

Yours probably came without all weather floor mats. I recommend the Husky liners (once they come out for 2011 - I believe they are 2010 only at the moment, they changed the safety hooks for 2011, so be sure to check.)

I drive in dense freeway traffic every day, and the side view mirrors just weren't getting it done for me. I tried the stick on round buttons, they worked OK, but on the passenger side, especially at night in the rain, they just too small of visual area and weren't cutting it. So I went with the Multivex Mirrors. They work outstandingly well - zero issue since install and not even once missing a car sitting in what used to be blind spots. Their website is a cheap PITA, but the product works great.

I highly recommend the Springtail MPAC racks as a most basic necessity - I have two, one on the side and one for the rear door. Keeps all the little junk from flying around, and essentially turns wasted space into highly organized space. Can't imagine rolling without them.

After that, it's the usual progression of underbody armor, rock rails, lift, tires, bumpers, etc.

Congratulations on your purchase, I like mine a lot. Mine is my daily driver, and the FJ really shines as a do anything, go anywhere truck.
 

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My dad bought a 2004 Disco for $14K. He has since put $10k in repairs to it. He also has some other annoying issues (electrical and mechanical) that he's not fixing that would be another $4k.

I had a 2000 Disco for about a year. It was OK...leaked oil and steering fluid though.

My 07 just rolled 50k miles and I have zero issues (including the windshield).
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I highly recommend the Springtail MPAC racks as a most basic necessity - I have two, one on the side and one for the rear door. Keeps all the little junk from flying around, and essentially turns wasted space into highly organized space. Can't imagine rolling without them.
Thanks for the very helpful post. I've been looking at all your recommendations...the MPAC stuff is really impressive. Those front door pouches look handy...do they stay in well? That slot is useless otherwise. And it's hard to tell where the hidden compartment bag goes...do I have a hidden compartment I don't know about!?
 

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do you have any pics of your FJ and the mirrors. their website doesnt have photos..

I drive in dense freeway traffic every day, and the side view mirrors just weren't getting it done for me. I tried the stick on round buttons, they worked OK, but on the passenger side, especially at night in the rain, they just too small of visual area and weren't cutting it. So I went with the Multivex Mirrors. They work outstandingly well - zero issue since install and not even once missing a car sitting in what used to be blind spots. Their website is a cheap PITA, but the product works great.
 

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I always hear bad things about the Land rover are they really that bad?
I ditched a Land Rover Discovery for my FJ this year. Here's is just the repair items in the last 6 months (it had 136k miles...for a Toyota, thats the half-way point):

1) new driveshaft
2) replaced air suspension with springs (land rover won't touch air suspension anymore...too problematic)
3) head gasket
4) all antifreeze lines (there are a ton and they are skinny and hard plastic)
5) O2 sensors (both)

I ran out of money before fixing the door locks, seat heaters, and sagging headliner.

Then I was rewarded with a cracked cylinder liner...engine shot...$4k repair cost. SO YES, THEY ARE TOTAL PIECES OF &@^#@#*$^!!!!!
 
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