Did the research in 2002, bought a 1998 TLC with 54,000 miles on it from a dealer that picked it up off auction as a lease return. This is one fantastic vehicle. The whole is greater than the sum of the parts in this case. The engine is not powerful by today's standards, but quite adequate. The cabin space is not enormous, but very comfortable. It will go anywhere, out climb the Hummers, leave the jeeps in the gullies, etc. Handles snow and ice like a dream, even on 13% grades in the mountains. Locking differentials are a great option. Maintenance cost in minimal; I put a starter in at about 100,000 miles. Like it so much I bought a 2nd one in 2006. Keeping this one too, though.
Our Crusher was given to us by relatives that used it as a parking lot princess. In 10 years it had been dinged, scraped, dirtied and unloved as it was a family workhorse. NY winters did not help. NO scheduled maintenance ever, just generic oil changes, tires and brakes every so often. $4K later (a bargain!), it looks and rides just like new. Best of all it has only 60K on the clock! Even after 10 years of short trips and substandard preventative maintenance, this LC still runs like new! This vehicle is rock-solid and it's reputation precedes it, making my analysis superfluous. ;-)
We bought it new and have 148,000 miles on it. The engine is still silent and the transmission runs like new. I'm not kidding. I have replaced some mechanical things due to wear but you have to expect this. I'm only on my 3rd set of tires in 10 years. If you're looking for a large suv forget mercedes and bmw and ford and cadilac and lincoln. The build quality on this thing puts them all to shame.