The Toyota Land Cruiser is a vehicle that practically defines dependability. Since their inception in the 1950s, Toyota’s storied off-roaders have been proven in some of the harshest conditions imaginable, and over the course of six decades, the Land Cruiser name has become a benchmark for reliability. It likely comes as little surprise to learn that the concept for the Land Cruiser was inspired by the American Jeep. In 1950, the US Government commissioned Toyota to build 100 Willys Jeeps for use by the Military Police during the Korean War. Toyota obliged but immediately saw room for improvement on the old American design. In 1951 Toyota developed their own prototype which drew on the best the Jeep had to offer but with numerous improvements and refinements. Production of the “Toyota Jeep BJ” began in 1953 and the vehicle was put into service primarily for police and military use. In 1954, the civilian version gained the Land Cruiser name, becoming a welcome tool for farming, construction, industry, or anywhere else a rugged all-purpose truck was needed to traverse difficult terrain.
In 1960, the 40-series Land Cruiser was unveiled with all-new body styling, an improved chassis and new engine options including gasoline and diesel power. The 40-series and its derivatives remained in regular production for 24 years, earning its place as a legend for its unbreakable nature as much as its tough-guy good looks. In the 3+ decades since production of the 40 series ended, these trucks remain highly collectible and have spawned an entire sub-culture within the classic car world. The FJ40 is simply one of the greatest vehicles of all time.
We are pleased to offer this truly outstanding, exquisitely restored 1968 Land Cruiser FJ40 Hardtop. Subject of a ground up, nut-and-bolt restoration performed by marque experts, this FJ features several subtle upgrades to improve the driving experience. Finished in Heath Gray (Toyota code 113) with a white roof, the paint quality is outstanding, detailed to factory-fresh standards, with a look that is very authentic without appearing over-restored. Period accessories include rubber bumper guards and original fog lamps. Panel fit is consistent and factory appropriate. As with most FJ40s, the hard top can be removed, and the body features the split tailgate with swing-out rear doors. It rides on painted steel wheels with polished stainless early-type dog-dish hubcaps. The wheels wear aggressive Firestone Super All Traction tires that give a vintage look but are upsized slightly to fill the wheel wells and provide a bit more clearance should you decide to hit the trails.
The chassis has been fully restored to a similarly high standard as the body. Suspension has been fully rebuilt, giving a very slight lift to allow for the larger tires. The frame and major components have been painted or powder coated with the same fastidious care given to the body and it remains in very clean and tidy condition, showing only minimal use. The stout and torquey F145 3.9 liter inline six runs strong, starting readily and sending power through the original-type 3-speed manual gearbox. The engine is pleasingly detailed with appropriate hardware and fittings, while the only obvious deviation from stock is the addition of the A/C compressor which has been integrated and plumbed to give a factory-look. Another welcome upgrade comes in the form of a discreet electric power steering system with an adjustable assist feature that is adjusted via a dash mounted rheostat.
The finely restored interior retains the original FJ’s purity and simplicity, but with subtle upgrades that include custom tailored floor coverings and an under-dash A/C unit. The front 60/40 bench seat and twin rear jump-seats are trimmed in high quality charcoal upholstery as original. Period touches include a solid-state radio, correct rear hatch stays, OEM switches and original steering wheel. The restored original jack is in place in the under-seat storage box while the jack handle and tire tools are fitted in the rear compartment as correct.
This FJ40 is an outstanding example in attractive colors that captures the essence of what makes these trucks so desirable, while affording the driver some welcome improvements to comfort and drivability without sacrificing the purity of the original design. Still fresh from its 2017 restoration, it is ready to serve as a loyal companion exploring trails, on fishing excursions, or simply for casual trips around town.