Chilean plated 1997 Toyota Hiace (fully camperized)

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#1 Fri, 12/23/2016 - 13:40

Chilean plated 1997 Toyota Hiace (fully camperized)

The Rig:

We're looking to sell our boss-hog 1997 Toyota Hiace 2.4 People often joke that the Hiace is "the backbone of latin america," and it's true. These bomb-proof rigs are one of the most common vehicles in south america and are often used as commercial transport vehicles and combi vans due to their durability, simplicity, and the abundance of used parts and mechanics who know them inside out. For the same reasons, they make the perfect camper van. We've equiped ours with a durable, versatile interior with tons of concealed storage, and a large convertable bed and table. We're selling it with everything you need to live on the road.


The History:

Ours spent most of its life as an airport transport vehicle, and still sports the original company decals. The previous owners (the first to travel in it) bought it in ApriI 2016 and sold it to us in August. We stored it until we began our trip in October, and are now looking to sell it in February. It is in fantastic mechanical shape since it was used lightly and maintained well as airport shuttle to and from the Coyhaique airport to the town of Coyhaique. The body is ugly, but she purrs like a kitten. The motor is in excellent condition and we’ve maintained it with care along the way. 

Quick Facts:

Manual transmission
2RZ-E 2438CC engine, shares common parts with Toyota Hilux 2.4
Gasoline (bencina) engine
2WD (rear wheel drive)
Chile registration and license plates
All Chilean papers up-to-date:
Permiso de Cirulación (road tax) – paid for until March 31 2017
Seguro Obligatorio (3rd party insurance) – paid for until March 31 2017
Revision Tecnica and Certificado de Emisiones – valid until April 17, 2018

Manual everything means nothing to break on you

-Manual, roll-down windows up front (these double as the bare-bones air conditioner)
-Manual, slide windows in the back (ventilation options, and ability to cook inside)
-Manual locks on all windows (easily re-inforced with wire if you want added security)
-Manual steering (good old strong arm steering)

We will also throw in the spare parts and fluids that were amassed along the way (extra universal joint, extra shock absorber, brake fluid), though because parts are so cheap and universal down here, there's little need to carry spares. We also carried inner tubes and a puncture kit in case of flats.  We will leave these for you. The spare tire leaves a little to be desired but it was fine for us.

The undercarriage has no rust (except a bit on the muffler). The body is worn and shows evidence of a fender bender, but the frame is solid and the ride is smooth. If you are looking for aesthetics in a vehicle, the exterior of the Hiace leaves a little to be desired but it fits in with local vehicles (dents and scratches) which is what you want for safety and blending in.  Clearance is relatively high, we just drove cautiously on rougher roads.

But I may want a 4x4?

We were not held back by 2WD anywhere. There were certain goat paths and farm tracks which we decided not to follow, but we were able to access all sorts of remote and wild camp sites, surf spots, and rock climbing craigs with confidence and ease.

Fuel Efficiency and Mileage:

Average for the time we’ve had the Hiace: 11 L / 100 km but if the wind’s going with you we’ve been down to 9 L/100 km.
We bought it at 242 000 km, and have put 10 000 km on our cross-country road trip. These vans are known to reach into the high 300's easily before requiring maintenance that tips the "cost-benefit" scale. 


Available any time in late January or February within Southern Chile up to Santiago. 

Recent Maintenance History:

New disc brake pads ( @ 228000 km)
New back shocks (Toyota Brand new (from Hilux), @ 238000 km)
New spark plugs (@228000 km)
Oil changes every 5000k w/ new oil filters (20w50 oil was never an issue finding)
New air filter (@ 228000 km)
New fan belts (@231000 km)
New clutch disc and universal joint (@ 235000 km)
New front light (@ 235000 km)

What doesn't work/works poorly:

The engine currently has the EFI disconnected, doesn’t affect emissions testing or fuel efficiency.  It does mean that some oil volatilizes (1 quart / 1500 km estimated).
Windshield washer fluid pump missing (never been a problem for us, replacement would be about $50)
Back tailgate is secured from inside using manual latch (because we don’t trust the latch outside)
Heating controls require some jimmying to adjust
Interior lights – (no bulbs) not a problem for us. It means you can’t leave them on to drain the battery! The rear tires are studded (great for wet/cold conditions) but will need to be replaced if you're planning to drive the south in the colder months as there is little tread left. The front tires are new, high end winter tires with lots of tread left. 

Ownership Transfer:

Buying a vehicle as a foreigner in Chile can be tricky if your Spanish isn't strong. Luckily, my plan is to work here in Chile in 2017, so will be able to guide you through the process of the ownership transfer and share with you the valuable knowledge gained through the acquisition process. 


$5000 USD or best offer. If you're still outside of Chile, I'm willing to arrange a deposit, which is common among buyers here on Drive the Americas! 

I can e-mail you the motor number, chassis number and more photos, etc. We're not always with internet access, but will respond to serious interest as promptly as possible.


Colin Robinson
[email protected]

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