Why I choose the TLC over the Fortuner or the Pajero Sports
I very common question that I’m asked is that when this vehicle is guzzling so much time, effort and money why don’t I sell that off and buy a Toyota Fortuner or the newly launched Pajero Sports.
Well the explanation is not so simple to answer in a short writeup, still I’ll try. No doubt both the vehicles the T Fort and the P-Sports are fanatic vehicles but I have only one basis of comparison, the Landcruiser 80 Series which I’ve driven now for 58000 Kms in about 2.5 Years.
I’ve driven the Fortuner and didn’t like it, this is obviously when comparing it to my vehicle. I find the drivability, road presence, ability to repair and get it serviced much better.
The thought of replacing the TLC with the T-Fort came to my mind too. I’ve spent close to 2.5L on the vehicle in the last 2.5 Years due to the Old Age factor. On a totality I’ve spent much more but I’m not counting expenses like Insurance, Accidental Repair, Normal Service & Tyres in this calculation as I would have spent a similar amount on the vehicle had it been a T-Fort or Pajero Sports.
Now comes the drivability . I like driving the TLC much more than I did the T-Fort, though I’ll agree that I drove the TFort only for a short duration, but still I could gauge it, on maybe an overall level. One has to really drive it to experience what kind of a vehicle this(Landcruiser) is. Additionally I’m a person with a slightly heavy foot, meaning though I don’t drive fast but I like to let the suspension do the work while driving over potholes, bad road and obviously no roads. And yes,I’ve have driven it in mostly all kinds of terrains. For example once each to Leh, Ladakh, Lahual Spiti, 3 trips as a Rally Marshal to the Desert Storm, a trip to Goa and back, Diu & Gir, to name a few. Yes, I’ve had my share of hiccups with the vehicle with occasional breakdowns, Tyre bursts, fan belts breaking, power steering pump packing up, etc but most of these factors were due to the Old Age of the vehicle and owner error, which I believe and practice, that if preventive maintenance is done, can be handled.
Regarding the time, yes it take a bit of time and I do have drivers who can goto the workshop and stand on the heads of the mechanics to get the job done. They do infact when I get the normal services done. However whenever something critical needs to be done I prefer to be there personally due to only one reason, cauz I enjoy it and want to learn from it. Plus share it with the world.
Now comes the part on the amount of dough that I’ve spent on the vehicle till date. I’ve spent 2.5 lacs On the vehicle till date but the way I see it, the 2.50 lacs I spent isn’t all loss. Like I bought the vehicle for an amount that today wouldn’t even be enough to buy a brand new Mahindra Scorpio 4×4 or a Tata Safari, so I believe that I have much better vehicle comfort wise viz a viz the above tow. Now on the worst case seaniro I can sell it easily for the same amount of money that I bought it for, infact,slightly more. So reasonably ,even if I can sell it for the same amount of money I bought it for,I’ll end up losing 2.5 big ones. If that’s the case, I take not like this that I’ve haven’t lost anything atall. Why you may ask? Because had it been a T-Fort I would have lost much more on the depreciation on the vehicle than I’m losing on the TLC today. Additionally the bill has run up a bit high (some may think) is because I get all the work done from Toyota Authorized Workshop and not from road side mechanics. Further any or all the parts that go bad, I have a a habit of replacing them with brand new OEM replacements. So they are bound to cost a bit more.
The reason I blog the goings of my vehicle is that, I want to share it with the world so that tomorrow anyone wanting to walk the same path know exactly what to expect and learn from my experiences.
Now comes to the point on the reliability of the vehicle. I simply say that even if for once I thought that the vehicle is unsafe, I, for all the money in the world wouldn’t risk taking my children for out station family vacations. That’s all I can say.