Is 270,000kms for a 2006 Toyota HiAce Too Many?

Hey guys!

So I’m looking to buy a Toyota HiAce commuter to use as a camper to travel around Australia in and I’ve found a 2006 Toyota HiAce commuter that runs on unleaded petrol for $19k which is in my price range.

However it has 270,000kms on the odo which I’m a bit cautious about.

Just looking for a 2nd opinion to know whether this is too many kms for a vehicle that runs on petrol?



  • +10 votes

    Seems very expensive.


    Why do you want the commuter version as a camper?

    • +1 vote

      Because it’s usually the commuters that are longer and also have the high roof which is what I’m looking for. Will have extremely more space which would be good considering I want to convert it into a camper.


        SLWB high roof van

  • +4 votes

    Expensive for 2006 and 270K on the clock. Could be covid prices.

    I would lookup a pickles car auction and go in to see what is available and if there is something you want then ask about prices and turn up on the night or day find out what the prices they go for and if it's okay and you like it then bid, but be aware that once you bid and you win it's yours as is where it is and you have to get it out within a day or two.


      As is where is - alot of risk in those terms. For an old car with high mileage an auction would terrify me - newer low km fleet and gov models I would understand. Isn't it the case that dealers send vehicles to auction that they do not want to carry the 3 month service warranty on. Anyway Toyotas have an impenetrable aura of reliability so YMMV buyer beware.


        Same rick as buying any used car after agreeing to buy it. You should get the car checked by NRMA, RACQ etc before bidding on the car if it does not already come with an inspection report as some do.

        I never said buy an old kluncker at auction. I said check out the prices.

        Any you think a second hand 3 month warranty is okay. If you google and check out reviews of some car dealers it's not worth the paper it's printed on.

        Any used car is buy beware if they have not gotten a professional to check the car over before agreeing to buy it.


          Same rick as buying any used car after agreeing to buy it.

          Not quite the same risk. Outside auctions you can take your time to inspect, take it for a drive, listen for noises etc. trusting an NRMA inspection is one thing but actually driving it yourself is an extra level of checking.

        • +1 vote

          @AndyC1, not a criticism mate buying second hand cars is a skillset and most likely you have some high skills and can carry out some or all of your own repairs. This lowers the risk and increases the possibility of getting a good price and a good car - great.

          In the days when all Pickles vehicles came with an NRMA inspection I was stung at auction - it was so bad the vehicle had to be trailered from the site to my mechanics and Pickles refunded the money without any argument.

          Without driving the vehicle, it's hard to tell if a work vehicle has been thrashed or carried tonnes of equipment all it's life.

          Personally I like private sales as most owners aren't experienced bullshitters and are more likely to be honest or at least have a 'tell' if asked about issues, and selling from their own home. It's easy to know if it's a backpackers car on it's 5th trip around Australia or the local accountant's car used to run the kids to soccer.

          Once again I agree with you Auctions may be a great choice depending upon skills, experience and car purchased

  • +4 votes

    Price - covid
    Mileage - barely run in for a HiAce

  • -1 vote

    I personally wouldn't buy a car at 270,000km unless I knew a lot about cars and servicing and knew the history. At 270,000 I would expect a lot of wear. We have an older vehicle only driven to work (40km highway roundtrip). Hasn't been thrashed, has 200km on odo, but over its lifetime had it's engine oil overfilled (we suspect). It drives OK, but a recent trip to the mechanics unveiled a lot of problems - heaps of seals/timing cover/rocker cover in the engine were leaking, both front cv boots cracked, cracked muffler (given - it's a '00 Magna), minor hose splits, etc. I'm sure not every high(er) mileage car is like this, but these things are hard to see if you're not a mechanic and could add up or potentially lead to some other issue down the line. It would be best to budget this in for a very high mileage vehicle. I'd be happy to buy a high mileage plonker for a couple grand but would be much more hesistant dropping 19k + onroads unless I really knew what I was doing or got it checked out by a trusted mechanic. It might be fine and survive the 10,000km trip, but at 270,000km you'd expect some wear and some issues to pop up. Also consider eventual resale since car prices are higher at the moment.


      You can't compare Mitsubishi with Toyota, many Toyota Taxi have been driven 400k and still going.

      Have driven a 90's Corolla with 300K on the clock and I don't feel it is given up. Driven until 350k I decide I need to change a newer car and traded in for $500.

    • +1 vote

      Those problems are because it's an old magna, not the KMS. Can't compare a magna with a HiAce.

      • +1 vote

        Plenty of old Mitsubishi’s still going.

        • +1 vote

          I'm sure they are going, they are just leaking oil everywhere and driving like crap.


      You wrote all that for nothing. It's a HiAce dude.

  • +1 vote

    You'd be wanting a diesel at the very least for that age and money. That's ridiculously inflated, unless you're somewhere like Perth where there isn't as many vehicles for sale. I just found several on the east coast around the same price, less km and 2009-2012 Commuter models


    Shouldn’t be a deal breaker, but the more kms the more chance of extra stuff being worn or like seats, suspension etc.


    The Toyota log books I've seen (a few older ones admittedly) provide schedule servicing details up to 400,000kms. That's just what they consider to be the lifespan of the car, if looked after by the book.

    If it has a full service history, then I wouldn't discount it immediately - definitely an inspection by an independent mechanic first though. If it doesn't have a log book, walk away.

    And yes, that's an insane price for the car.

  • +1 vote

    Sold a slwb high roof petrol manual with similar KMS for a friend before covid, think it went for $14-15k from memory, so price for KMS is probably pretty reasonable considering the current situation. If it's been looked after, the KMS aren't a problem.

    Not sure how many vans from 2006 people expect to find with less KMS than that.

  • -3 votes

    $19k for a 17 year old Van with heading onto 300,000km

    bruv your getting ripped off i know the market for used cars is hot right now but that is unbelievable

    i'd offer 6k maybe 10k MAX if they dont take it walk away

    • +1 vote

      Do you seriously think someone who is listing at $19k would take $6k or even $10k?

      • -1 vote

        Not saying they will sell it im saying that is what it is worth…people are delusional when selling 2nd hand goods


          Maybe $19k is a bit high, with covid inflation, but the reality is that 2nd hand goods are priced at a point the market will bear. Just because you don’t like it doesn’t mean someone else wont buy at that price. Offering 50% off what is being asked is a complete waste of time for everyone especially if the asking price is similar to the rest of the market.


      You have no idea my friend.

  • -1 vote

    Any older car will need work. These are mechanically simpler and cheaper to work on than recent cars.
    Do some research on possible costs, engine recon, gearbox swap, clutch etc. You may find that the cost of major failures are not that high if you give yourself time to fix. Talk to some mechanics that service these older cars and get an idea of costs.
    You may be pleasantly surprised. Do you have a bit of a budget for this?
    Be aware that if you intend to tour around with it you may want to do some replacements anyway to ensure reliability. You will only really know once you start living with the car and getting a reliable mech to service it a few times.


      i dont know who downvoted you but you're 100% correct


    If it was any brand but Toyota I would be concerned. I had a Toyota Yaris with 340,000 KM's on it and it still had plenty of life in it, and needed very little mechanical attention apart from regular oil changes.


    These things go for friggin ever to the lazy posters above who clearly don't know shit. This is not a cheap car as some mention. It's a commercial van designed to last for ages with regular servicing. It not unusual to see these at 6-700k km's and still going strong on the original motor.

    Only issue with this series of HiAce is high fuel consumption. But you would know that op from your research.

  • +2 votes

    Toyota are well renowned for their reliability in today's market - though that doesn't mean every single other car maker is crap at these kilometers as some appear to think.
    I'd at the very least go and look at it, and take it for a drive to see how it handles keep an ear out for:

    • Clunks / bumps when driving as this could indicate worn bushes, if lucky it's just a sway bar, if not it could be balljoints or suspension arm bushes which can get fairly expensive to replace.

    • If you've got a OBDII scanner (cheap online), see if/when the codes were last cleared to make sure they're not doing anything dodgy - anything less than 500k I'd walk.

    • Check that service history has been done on time and by a reputable place. If home serviced, ask them what brand filter and oil they use, service interval and ask the weight of the oil they use as well - someone at least half clued up will know the answers.

    • Read the log book to find the original owner detail. Was it a hire company? daycare? mine site? Some will use this to determine their next actions. I know a lot of people avoid ex-hire. Though I've owned a few ex-hire and all have lasted far longer than I needed and were super reliable.

    • Look underneath for rust, surface rust is generally ok and something you would expect on things like the exhaust, suspension components, etc. If you see rotted holes in anything, especially the chassis, from rust then walk away.

    • Check the roof gutters and on the roof as well, many miss it because these vehicles are so bloody tall, but can be a spot for rust to form.

    • Check the engine oil, coolant and transmission fluid (if auto), oil should be golden and to the full line though brown is what you would expect after a short amount of driving. Dark brown / black oil should make you a little weary and then you should heavily scrutinise the service history. Coolant on these I think is the pink coolant, make sure there's no rust or anything in it. Transmission fluid (again, if auto) should be a nice red colour and almost smells sweet, if it's brown and smells burnt then I'd walk.

    • Lastly drive with the radio off to listen for anything untoward. The engine will be semi-loud in these as you're sitting on it, though it should sound smooth and should have plenty of power (you'd be amazed how powerful they are.. I was!) Listen for any noises when turning which could indicate a worn wheel bearing and feel for any vibrations. Slightly let go of the wheel to make sure it tracks relatively straight as well.

    Honestly the commuters are a fantastic vehicle, I love our 2017 model and always have a smile when driving it. Around that era they sadly lack most common safety features which Totoya criminally under-invested in but regardless of that they're pleasent to drive and well refined.. even if parking is a learning curve!