Toyota Alphard - anyone got one?

Toyota Alphard - anyone got one?

Author
Discussion

Willber

Original Poster:

381 posts

125 months

Thursday 4th June
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Hello

Looking at Toyota Alphard as a mountain bike transporter and to use as an occasional campervan (without conversion). I like the idea of folding the seats and putting mattress topper on and having an instant campervan.

2.4 engine appeals due to relative simplicity and chain driven however have read many people prefer the V6 and later face-lift model with 5 speed gearbox.

Currently do all my own servicing so not afraid of getting stuck in fixing bits but they seem to be very reliable on the whole.


Would be interested to hear from any owners!

Cheers

designforlife

3,665 posts

119 months

Thursday 4th June
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Don't have an Alphard but do have another older JDM import Toyota.

Parts for the import JDM Toyotas are very easy to get with relatively short lead times through the dealer network, which takes a lot of the headaches out of import ownership.

Get the V6, it's a V6!


Willber

Original Poster:

381 posts

125 months

Thursday 4th June
quotequote all
Thanks for your reply. I am leaning more towards the V6 due to similar MPG as the 2.4 but more power and refinement. I understand the face-lift models have a 5spd gearbox too.

Good to know parts are readily available too. The V6 would need cambelt and waterpump doing if not evidenced already in service history.

Thinking of engaging an agent to import one also. Jap Auto Agent seems highly recommended.

designforlife

3,665 posts

119 months

Thursday 4th June
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If I needed a bus it would be top of my list tbh, or the V6 el grand...but I do like Toyotas

TommoAE86

2,092 posts

83 months

Friday 5th June
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Torque GT were the agent who have sourced both my Skyline and my Crown Athlete and I can recommend them as well.

Parts for my Toyota are easy too, underneath it's a Lexus GS350 and to find the number I just use amayama then go to any dealership.

swampy442

728 posts

167 months

Friday 5th June
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No personal experience but had 2 good friends who had Alphards and El Grands. The Toyota is top in terms of quality of build and finish.

He had the V6 one and he loved it, only thing is in any form, they're horrendous on fuel so that needs to be taken into account. I'd buy a UK landed car rather than import but if you do import there's lots of cheaper importers out there than Torque GT (who are good btw) with access to the same stock

Lollypops

73 posts

31 months

Friday 5th June
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The Alphard is a lovely car. Definitely go for the v6 if you will be doing motorway driving. The facelift v6 is a better bet as it has a 5 speed auto rather than 4 speed. You can tell the difference from the rear lights.

Ideally go for an MZ-G edition (if you are looking at a mk1 Alphard) as it is the top of the range model. Some of the top spec ones have stuff like 360 degree cameras etc. They also look better with the factory fit aero, although there are a few different versions of the aero!

Willber

Original Poster:

381 posts

125 months

Saturday 6th June
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Thanks all! I am also looking at Elgrands. Interesting that the Toyota seems better built. At my price point (£5-6k) the Elgrand seems better value as 5spd as standard and no cam belt to factor in, although do need to factor in rear cat work but that seems cheap from what I have read. Some for sale already have this done....

Fuel not a massive issue as won't be daily driving / commuting!

Have looked at beforward.jp but I think these are just dealer forecourt cars rather than auction vetted? Open to a private sale here too from previous owners. I have joined Facebook groups for both Alphard and Elgrand and they are extremely useful.

samoht

1,386 posts

102 months

Saturday 6th June
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My parents had the 2nd-gen Previa which is closely related. In that I felt the 2.4 AT drivetrain was fine, fit for purpose certainly when not heavily loaded. However the Alphard looks to be getting on for 20% heavier so I guess the V6 is probably the way to go unless you're happy to travel at a more relaxed pace.

They didn't have much trouble with the Previa, main issue was when the dealership replaced the battery with an undersized one causing it to go flat every week for a while. Oh, and my mum driving it into a flood and destroying the engine. But nothing you can really blame the car for, as reliable as you would expect a Toyota to be.

So based on that, I would imagine a well looked after Alphard would be a very good choice.

Edit - or you could downgrade to a Previa, would probably do the same job and potentially quite a lot cheaper. Not as JDM cool though.

Edited by samoht on Saturday 6th June 20:26

D_G

1,694 posts

165 months

Saturday 6th June
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If you import one use a UK agent who will have Japanese agents to check the car over there. Don't buy one off screen based on the auction sheet or randon appraisal.

Willber

Original Poster:

381 posts

125 months

Sunday 7th June
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Thanks again all, you have definitely given me plenty to consider. I don't think i could be bothered with the faff of importing one myself and would rather purchase something that has been inspected or is in the UK already.

The Alphard facelift v6 seems slightly more expensive and less about than the Elgrand, plus i think I prefer the look of the Elgrand and the forums/owners club seems more active so probably easier to sort any issues if they crop up and source parts etc.

dai1983

2,206 posts

105 months

Thursday 11th June
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Been considering a JDM van myself and out of all of them I think I prefer the Honda Elysion. Don't think it's as big as the others and the seat folding system isn't as practical though. Comes in a 2.4, 3.0 that shuts one bank of cylinders off when cruising or a 3.5 out if the Legend.

For my needs I think I'd be better off with an Odyssey or a mk2 stream

D_G

1,694 posts

165 months

Sunday 14th June
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The Odyssey is a great car, here's mine, still under 21000 miles...

Off to pastures new though as my replacement has just arrived from Japan.

D_G

1,694 posts

165 months

Friday 19th June
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My Odyssey is in the classifieds now.

Chazdad

14 posts

7 months

Friday 3rd July
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Ive not had an alphard but had a few elgrands
Im currently selling my recently imported supercharged honda stepwagon which is a nice compromise.
Ive got a few friends who have import companies and i know one has a few nice alphards if you fancy a fresh import or some pointers feel free to pm me