Re: Newbie to Blazers, Best All Around?
It's a bit too bad that parents think newer automatically means more reliable. I had the same problem about two years ago when I ended up getting an '89 K1500. The thing is, trucks have a hard time lasting ten years without needing some big attention. Mine came in the form of rebuilding the transmission, the front-end, the rear-end, numerous electrical problems, and the A/C. If I were to add the combined price, I could have purchased a vehicle that was only two or three years old at the time and a lot of shop time, hassle, and piece-of-mind would have been saved. Even better, I could have found a '72 pick-up that I would have liked, sunk half the money into it, and had a far superior off-road vehicle. The spare money could have gone toward lots of miles worth of fuel.
In short, at about ten years old, you might encounter some expensive fixes. Parts are more expensive and mechanics aren't known to be especially good with the computer controls. I even had a mechanic tell me that Z71=100hp more than a regular 4x4. I would hate to see the fullsize '89 with a factory rated 100hp.
An early 90's Blazer/Jimmy is, by no means going to be as reliable as you think, and the earlier ones aren't going to be as bad as your parents think. It is really a toss up. However, EFI is a nice off-road and driveability perk.
I don't really have any suggestions as to what is the best truck for you, but I would keep in mind that, with trucks especially, its not a matter of if it will break, it is a matter of when it will break.
'89 K1500 350/700r4