View Full Version : Suzuki Samurai anyone?
02-18-2006, 05:08 AM
I am seriously considering the idea of buying a samurai when I get home latter this year. Not as a daily driver, but just as a toy. Basically it would be used as a cheaper, street legal alternative to a Yamaha Rhino. Does anyone have any experience with them? Any comments especially on reliability, and cheap mods would be appreciated.
02-18-2006, 05:46 AM
If left stock, or only small lift and tires they are very reliable. Great gas milage too. They are not much for room or power, if you can live with that they are great. Strong aftermarket support.
02-18-2006, 09:56 AM
I owned an 87 for 10 years as my daily driver and it was extremely reliable until the end, then it started showing its age - transmission needed rebuilt, engine wouldn't pass emissions - but with 150,000 trouble free miles behind it, I was pleased.
Off-road capability is amazing - especially if you do a very simple and inexpensive spring-over-axle lift.
They are fun little vehicles - take the top off and go. It was, I have to say, the only vehicle I've ever owned that would actually slow down going DOWN a long hill. I'd push the clutch in and freewheel only to find myself losing speed - with the top on, the canvas acted like a parachute.
Have fun with it.
02-18-2006, 01:45 PM
Man those are cool. Kind of a king of cheap project to. There is so much support for them it is crazy. I have always wanted to get a hard top version to use as a fun rig for paddling trips.
02-19-2006, 01:29 PM
I would highly recommend one. Try for a later year with fuel injection if possible.
Keep the modifications minimal, like a 235/75 R15 max tire size. Install a rear locker and a gear reduction in the transfer case, then you are set :)
You might want to consider a newer sidekick too.
03-29-2006, 07:03 PM
I've got a friend with a Samurai. It's modified to the hilt. There's tons of aftermarket stuff available and lots of support. His has an aluminum V6 motor, full lockers front and rear, huge tires, etc., etc. It's friggin unstoppable.
I highly recommend them! You can do a 1.6L swap from a sidekick quite easily. And if you do a spring swap and spring over (or even leave it spring under) with Jeep YJ springs it rides really well, nice and soft but stable.
You can go to bigger tires and compensate for them with a tcase gear swap that will give you a better low range and it also lowers the high range as well so you get some hiway gears back.
But keeping it near stock is always fun as well! :D
11-30-2009, 11:48 PM
Well, the samurai is great for off road driving and aside from that, you can customize it to have a better lift. It is fun to drive and the suzuki samurai parts (http://www.car-stuff.com/suzukisamuraiparts.htm) can be easily spotted.
12-01-2009, 02:45 AM
I've had a 1987 JX Convertible for about a month. I recently wrote this in another forum:
"These things suck. It's got a zero to sixty time of....well, it does zero to sixty. It rides like a buckboard on washboard and by the time I get to work, my butt feels like it's been slapped by a paddleboard. It's loud, it's cramped, it's held together by what appear to be toy parts. It's about as safe as a moped on the autobahn, and the steering is about as responsive and predictable as the reins on a retarded donkey in heat. Since I've picked it up, the A/C, heater, fuel gauge, and trip meter have pooped the bed, it's peed all over the driveway, the soft top blew a new gaping mouth-hole (just in time for winter!), it runs richer than Bill Gates, and is about as respected by other cars as an ugly Denny's waitress at a truck stop outside of Kabul.
And it's the most fun I've had on four wheels in a long, long time.
--Cheap initial expense
--Cheap to modify
--Lots of available OEM parts
--Great gas mileage (Mine gets an average 27mpg unloaded, but much less loaded with two passengers, headwind, steep inclines, etc.)
--Great offroad, very "billy goat" like.
--Modular--doors or top come on and off with ease.
--Simple construction. Field fixes have never been easier.
--Handles like a cross between a Jeep and a VW Bug. Short gears, stiff suspension, and funny steering will ensure you have the full "Third World" driving experience. You'll never fall asleep while driving a Samurai.
--Slow. Reeeeal slow.
--Other cars will not respect you. A lifted Silverado on 47"s will sit five feet off your rear bumper in the slow lane and shine his lights in your eyes as revenge for such inappropriate slowness. People will literally drive by and flip you off, cut you off, throw things at you, or try to run you off the road, even if you're in the slow lane. They do not care that your vehicle has a top speed of 65 mph. They have somewhere to go, and you have delayed them nearly five seconds. For this, they must risk your life and the lives of those around you by making a very dangerous point about your grievous offense towards them.
--There is plenty of room...as long as you're not bringing much along. If you're one of those brave souls who can be comfortable with a bedroll, a socket set, an extra set of undies, and a modest beer cooler, you'll be happy. If you've ever backpacked or camped off a motorbike or a kayak, you'll be elated. If you're used to an 80 series Land Cruiser, you're in for a lesson in paring down and doing without.
--No airbags, crumple zones, or other fancy-schmancy safety features. You want safe? Get a helmet.
--Handles like a cross between a Jeep and a VW Bug. The gears are so short, the suspension so stiff, and the steering so drifty, that you are assured to never have a dull moment. The full "Third World" driving experience. You'll never relax while driving a Samurai.
If this sounds like something you're crazy enough to enjoy, get a Samurai. And then get some psychiatric help.
12-01-2009, 04:16 AM
I LOVE MY SAMURAI, one of the most fun 4x4's I've owned. It will take you most places you might want to go...but not very fast. Check out the Samurai Owners thread for some very nice looking suzuki's. Let us know if you pick one up. Like Expeditionswest said look for a newer one with fuel injection you'll be much happier :safari-rig: :smiley_drive:
Powered by vBulletin® Version 4.1.11 Copyright © 2013 vBulletin Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.