Long-term wrap-up: Our manual Toyota FJ Cruiser is leaving the country
If you’re wondering why we don’t talk about our 2013 Toyota FJ Cruiser any more, it’s because we sold it last year to a reader. And what a great car it was. Let’s take a final look at the running costs.
The car was on sale on and off for a year before we finally let it go for Dhs 62,500 and a set of new tyres. We had priced it higher on account of its rarity and low mileage, but as time went on, it became obvious that most people are all talk and no substance when it comes to “saving the manual,” as we had a string of low-ballers and resellers making offers before one of our readers stepped up and bought it, and said he will ship to his home country of Spain later on, where the FJ will be an exotic. At least we kept driving it during that time and enjoyed the 6-speed self-shifter, which was infinitely more entertaining than the 5-speed automatic.
Factoring in the Dhs 97,000 demo-car purchase price in 2014, the depreciation is about 36% over 4 years, which is rather excellent actually. In terms of future classic value, we suspect the price will never go down below Dhs 50,000 (even though we got offers for Dhs 45,000 from those SellAnyJunk-type outfits), and in about 15 years, it will probably start appreciating by a little bit as a niche model.
The last service we had done was a minor one and cost Dhs 540, which is a bargain by Toyota dealer standards, but only because there was a special offer running. Still, we were spending more on paid parking than we ever did on maintenance.
We also inquired yet again about the rubber trim peeling off from the rear-side door windows (which is a common problem), but never got it done because we didn’t have time for the usual multi-trip warranty dance.
Every other year, Toyota seems to announce the cancellation of the FJ Cruiser, only for us to find out that GCC dealers quietly continue to still sell brand new ones. They are now sold only in automatic form with more creature comforts and a sky-high price, but you’ll never get a new manual version again. It may be more than a decade old, but it’s still a more robust vehicle than the shiny new Jeep Wrangler. Long live the FJ.
Original Mileage When Bought: 5,500 km
Latest Mileage To Date: 22,500 km
Latest Average Fuel Economy: 14.5 litres/100 km
Cost of Latest Problems: Dhs 0
Cost of Latest Maintenance: Dhs 540
Total Non-Fuel Running Cost Since Bought: Dhs 3646