The Toyota Land Cruiser was a car designed and built with function in mind. It had a clear purpose and calling from the blue print to its production. The FJ40 is not an over complicated machine, wrapped in layers of elegance and mystery. It is a machine built with function at its core and grit in its DNA. The Land Cruiser is big, tough and too hot to handle for the timorous driver. It’s an off-roader’s dream, designed with the adventurer in mind and explorer in spirit.
The FJ40 is built for the most draconian conditions. This off-roader has not only endured the dirt, mud and snow but it has tread water for generations. Sought after in the past for its practicality and strength, coveted today for its reputation and resilience. The FJ40 has somehow steamed its way into the trendy consciousness as it is a hot commodity in this market. The off-road, mean machine is the ultimate boy’s toy. In the 68 years since it’s inception, over 10 million FJ40’s have been sold. Its popularity remains indisputable.
The interior cabin is as spacious as expected, with two seats in the front and two benches for as many as can be fitted in the back. Whether that it is for a large family or National Geographic photojournalists carrying equipment for filming wildlife. The FJ40 has space in abundance and intention. The FJ40 draws curiosity in spades which explains why so many are drawn to it.
The FJ40 can go the distance on the dirt but given its age, the suspension and long gear stick can feel stiff at speed which can make for a bumpy ride, so watch out for your head hitting the ceiling. The steering wheel is very large which also makes for a slow response. These jeeps are on the old side so they don’t exactly have the latest technology.
In addition, the weight of the FJ40 is certainly on the heavy side so don’t expect lightning quick acceleration either. Nevertheless, the FJ40s raise the flag for practicality and certainly are a symbol of off-road cruising. Whether its driving on Parramatta road or on the unforgiving outback terrain, the FJ40 is versatile and all condition ready.
It comes in hardtop, soft top, station wagon or pick up form, for all types of conditions, whatever the type, it is blissful to drive. The 4×4 powered machine is not going to win drag races, but it would if the circuit was filled with steep hills and muddy puddles. The clutch feels heavy but eases in once transitioned into higher gears. It also helps to come with a gear shifting instruction on the panel, which it does. The 4.2 litre engine generates 135 horsepower with it’s four-speed transition.
The ”F’’ In FJ refers to the Type F engine whilst ‘’J’’ is for jeep. The 40 is in reference to its displacement of the inline-six engine. Forget urban commuting, the FJ40 is truly built with the adventurer in mind. The top speed on road can stretch to 135 km/h but don’t expect those speeds when driving on rough terrain, those conditions can expect to drag about 70 km/h out of it.
Not to be mistaken for what it is not, the FJ40 is quite basic. It is not hard to find its soul, as it requires just a mere glance to recognise it. It is brimming with character, which no doubt is needed for its intended purpose. The FJ40 is born to explore, bred to endure. Its a car that can bring the most out of our environment, and the most out of our curiosity. A true Land Cruiser.