1990 Toyota Pickup

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Asking Price Range
$1,013–$6,581
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Average Ratings

Overall

4.8 out of 5

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7 out of 8 people recommended this car.


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    1-8 of 8 reviews

Not for sale

by truck guy 69 from Phoenix, AZ | June 20, 2014

I've had this truck for what seems like forever, as I acquired it from a family member- original owner in the late 90s. It wasn't always my main transportation, but I just couldn't bring myself to sell it. It didn't come with much but a very warm heater- no AC, radio, power steering, and with a vinyl bench seat, crank windows, etc... A 4 speed manual 2WD with a 2 barrel carburetor, I think it was dirt cheap new- around $7200. You slide in the seat as you go around corners because the bench has absolutely no support at all. Your basic work truck- not exactly the stuff automotive dreams are made of. But it definitely inspires confidence. There does seem to be something to the Toyota pickup reliability reputation. I drive it to work a lot, just to keep the miles off of the family car, and I never worry about it breaking down, even at 250K miles. It just feels solid, and is easy to work on, should you have to. And with no options, there is little to break- but no ABS or airbags either- yikes! And although 109 Hp doesn't sound like a lot, this motor has one of the better torque curves in a 4 cylinder I've seen (Fuel injection gets 116 Hp and is pretty common in '90). With only 2700 pounds to move around, you can get off of the line and up to speed pretty fast, even while working through some pretty tall gearing. You can get 30 MPG on the highway if you can keep it below 70. I get about 25 driving on the suburban streets of Phoenix. Used mostly as a hauler and as a 2nd/ 3rd car, It's been great, I would recommend. They made these trucks through '95, and started getting standard carpeting and cloth interior around '92, also with standard 5 speeds and Fuel Injection. The later Tacomas are good too, but relatively expensive. You can go older than ’89 (with the old body style), as the power train dates back to 1981, but (depending on the year) you may lose a little HP and you'll find fewer 5 speeds and fuel injection. The way the transmission/ differential gear ratios work, 5 speeds don't really give better highway mileage than 4 speeds, but they make the truck a bit quicker, and the 5 speeds seem more reliable. Adding 4WD (and 600 pounds) will hurt the mileage and the acceleration quite a bit. As far as specific repairs for my '90 Toyota, my Dad put some really tough city miles on it at first with barely doing any more than changing the oil. At 95K, it had been completely reliable, but already needed a clutch. In the early 2000s, it needed a radiator, clutch master cylinder, and a starter at around 130- 150K. Then it seemed great for a long time until it blew the head gasket at 196K, it was also leaking a little through the front seal, so I changed that and the timing chain, having seen another truck break the chain at 270K. At 224K, it needed another clutch, but that’s just normal maintenance, and I changed the rear motor seal while I was down there, just in case. It's actually been great ever since the head gasket failure, now at about 250K. It's hard to believe, but it rarely burns oil. When I moved to Phoenix a few years ago, I put a new mechanical fan clutch in and started using 20W-50 oil in the summer. That seemed to really do the trick, as even in 110+ degree heat, it runs cool and doesn't seem to lose as much power when it gets hot as my other cars. Having been in both a 1992 and 94 fuel injected model, I can verify that they do struggle with cooling and pinging under load when it gets really hot. But they are superior in cold weather, as my truck stumbles and hesitates before it warms up. Other 2WD trucks I've owned- 1997 Nissan Xtra- cab XE 4 cyl. 5 speed. Felt very roomy and fancy by comparison with power steering, cloth interior and A/C. Perfect reliability through 104K. Needed the money, sold it, and drove the '90 Toy instead for awhile. The '97 Nissan, though about as quick above 20 MPH as the ‘90 Toy, struggled to get more than low 20s MPG, even on the highway. An unfortunate shortcoming, on trips out of town, I’d often take the Toyota just to save gas. 2002 Ford Ranger 4cyl. 5 speed. Even nicer interior than the Nissan. Competitive mileage with the ‘90 Toy, unlike the Nissan. But noticeably weaker acceleration compared to the other two trucks. Reliable overall. Unfortunately, that truck was wrecked. So I went back to driving the '90 Toy for a while, then started buying cars when I got a family- and the ’90 truck returned to reliable backup vehicle status ever since.

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Just getting around
Does recommend this car


Biggest mistake I ever made selling my old truck

by I called it Herbie from Streator Ill | April 21, 2014

I purchased my 1990 pickup new in 1989. It got no kidding 44 mpg on the highway. Better if I used Shell gasoline. Had a warranty when I purchased it 100,000 miles bumper to bumper. Did not use a penny's worth of the warranty. Had 183,000 on it after 20 years with absolutely no problems with the truck. I did have to replace the muffler once around 120,000 and new brakes at 160,000. My original battery was finally replaced when the truck was 17 years old and my Bumper had a lot of rust on it. I had only one parking space at my house and it was a "code" violation to park in the street or on my grass. Got letters from the city telling me I would get a $75 fine everytime I parked it on the road or grass. I don't understand what happen to our rights as American citizens when the government says you can't keep something you love. I had to sell either it or my corolla. I moved away from there so when I needed another car I looked for another 1990 pickup. No one around here will sell. I don't blame them. I just purchased a 1999 Corolla to replace my 1995 Corolla. I have owned 2 Tercels, 1 pickup and 8 Corollas I started driving Toyotas in 1979 and I refuse to look at anything else when I need another car. My x traded in her Camry a few years ago. It had 400,000 miles on it.

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Uses car for Just getting around
Does recommend this car


can't say anything bad

by mark from new hampshire | May 2, 2011

great truck, Ive had it for 20 years and only replaced breaks and exhaust. Fenders starting to rust.

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Work
Does recommend this car


Almost Indestructible

by Bush from Candle Lake, Saskatchewan | November 30, 2010

Bought this truck new. Now has 300,000 kms. and still looks and runs like the day I purchased it. Bought the optional Lifetime Rust Protection which my Toyota Dealership in Prince Albert Saskatchewan still honors to this day! This truck has been amazing and absolutely trouble free. Will most likely keep this truck for the rest of my life!

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Just getting around
Does recommend this car


Nice little truck...

by yota fan. from | December 22, 2009

don't get me wrong. I love this truck, its a beaut! but reliability is not the best. i have had quite a few things go wrong with it, and with it being an import it isn't the cheapest to fix! though they are really good off road!

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Uses car for N/A
Does not recommend this car


Excellent !

by 1991 TOYOTA SR5 4X4 ! from Pasadena Calif. | November 28, 2008

Have Had Many Vehicles & Trucks..... Lets Just Say... Its Not For sale. Rips Thru Sand At 85 Mph+ Its Stock. Its Balanced. It Climbs Like A Goat. Its an Excellent Truck.... BEEP BEEP,CHEEP JEEP.

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Purchased a new car
Uses car for Commuting
Does recommend this car


Try and Keep Up

by i dont know from lake st.louis | March 30, 2007

mine is bone stock and i go muddin and stuff all the time. no problems ive put no money into this truck and have had no problems and in fact pulled a few other trucks outta some tight spots.

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Does recommend this car


Awesome

by It is a Dune`S thing from Calexico, CA | May 10, 2006

I modified the motor with just 1500 dollars and dude, that rocks over dunes...Yeah baby

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Does recommend this car



    1-8 of 8 reviews

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