Hmm?? Not an Australian? Sorry.....
WE are looking to buy either a VW or Toyota Hi Ace Camper van. Want small.
We have heard that the VW is unreliable and costly to run, plus difficult and expensive to get parts.
looking for positive feedback from owners.
don't intend going too off road, but far, would like a 4WD Know very little yet about models etc, don't get to see much in Tassie.
I can actually give some sort of comparison as I've owned both (well, a Granvia which is just a Hiace in corduroy trousers). It was completely reliable, the 4 wheel drive worked great and the handling on road was good. Downsides were that parts were had to be ordered from Japan (which may be a plus for you as that's closer than Germany), a noisy engine, and typical nasty Japanese interior and dash plastics. I replaced it with a T5 then T6 and never gave Toyota another thought. My opinion, the VW is miles better, but that's in a country close to Germany and with an extensive dealer network. I'd drive both if I were you, and if that doesn't decide it for you (and I'd be surprised) then make your decision on the support you're likely to get over there if something does go wrong. Good luck.
As the owner of two German and one Japanese vehicles I would say for absolute reliability, go for the latter.
Yep they don't have showy interiors or the "cult" attached to VWs but they are absolutely bullet proof in 95% of cases (there is the odd hiccup). German build quality isn't what it used to be at all - in the rush for low emissions and "nice" interiors, solid engines and top notch chassis build seems to have got lost - our least reliable vehicle? Our 2012 T5.1 California 180 4motion bought new (although followed closely by our 110 Defender....). Our most reliable? A toss up between our current Subaru Outback and our old Suzuki Jimny.
While I feel the Germans have pulled up ihre socken since the absolute pit of poor quality in around 2010, they still need to improve.
Our 2016 California "feels" far more reliable than our 2012 one but we have still had more issues than any £50k+++ vehicle should have and at least it has a cast iron 5 year warranty.
We have relatives all over Oz, some on remote farms in the middle of nowhere - they all have Toyotas without exception. Plus Japan is closer and it's easier to access their market - a mate imports cars into NZ and deals with far more Japanese than German motors.
While this is a VW forum and many will harp on about "the scene," "resale values," and so on, if I was somewhere remote like Tasmania I'd take my Subaru over not my VW van.
If you were traversing Australia, would you do it in a Landcruiser or a Touareg?
Go for the Toyota HiAce. And your first post made complete sense.
German cars/vans are trading on a reputation earned in the 1970s and 80's. Nice designs and all that, but when you are 300 miles from anywhere in the outback, are you really going to be interested in the impressive uniformity of the panel gaps on the dashboard?