This is a 1983 Toyota FJ45 Land Cruiser, the FJ45 was the longer wheelbase version of the FJ40 that was also offered as a pick up truck – a form factor that would become incredibly popular in fields like agriculture, mining, forestry management, and search and rescue.
The FJ45 Pick Up you see here has been painstakingly restored, it’s powered by a 4.2 liter 2F straight-six engine, it rides on Old Man Emu suspension, it has a Warn winch, a high-lift jack, and a slew of other upgrades – and it’s now for sale.
Fast Facts – The Toyota FJ45 Pick Up Truck
- The Toyota FJ45 was introduced as part of the Land Cruiser J40 series, a line that evolved from Toyota’s earlier J20 series, which were originally designed in the 1950s. The FJ45 was a longer wheelbase version of the J40 developed to cater to a growing demand for durable and reliable utility vehicles, combining rugged off-road capability with basic comforts for everyday use.
- The FJ45 was offered as a four-door station wagon, two-door station wagon, pick up truck, and a cab-chassis. It was more versatile than the short wheelbase FJ40 with considerably more interior space, as such it was used by a number of militaries around the world.
- The model was originally equipped with the F series engine, a 3.9 liter inline six-cylinder gasoline engine known for its durability, torque, and ease of maintenance. The F series engine would be largely replaced with the 2F series engine in 1975, a more powerful 4.2 liter inline-six closely based on the earlier design.
- As with almost all 4x4s of the era, the J40 Series had body-on-chassis architecture, like front and rear axles, and a front-mounted engine sending power back through a dual-range transfer case and a manual transmission.
- The Toyota FJ45 you see in this article has been comprehensively restored to better-than-new condition. It’s finished in Olive Green with a White roof, it has custom tan leather upholstery, a 4.2 liter 2F straight-six engine, Old Man Emu suspension, and a slew of other upgrades.
Building A Better 4×4 Pick Up truck
Back in the early 1960s the pick up truck market was largely dominated by the Americans, with their large, heavy, and thirsty designs that frequently didn’t particularly suit conditions elsewhere in the world, where roads are narrower and fuel is more costly.
Although the Americans were producing the most pick up trucks they weren’t the only ones in the genre. The Brits had a number of locally produced examples including some made by Bedford and Ford’s UK operations. Similarly, across the channel there were pick ups and utes of various descriptions being made in France, Germany, Italy, and further afield.
The number of manufacturers really narrowed when you started looking for pick up trucks with four-wheel drive. One of the leading manufacturers was Land Rover out of Britain with their Series II and Series IIA models which came in long wheelbase versions with pick up rear ends as an option.
What Toyota wanted to do was compete with Land Rover for both the regular Land Rover customers buying two and four-door 4x4s as well the agricultural and industrial buyers – the pick up truck and trooper carrier offerings.
This should come as no surprise really, Land Rover had been a key inspiration for the creation of the Land Cruiser. In fact, Toyota Director of Technology Hanji Umehara had chosen the name Land Cruiser to emulate the British manufacturer while at the same time avoiding intellectual property issues with the previous name they had used – “Jeep.”
With the J40 series Toyota had hit upon a winning format. They provided all the off-road prowess of the Land Rover but with a more powerful engine, all offered at a highly competitive price. The petrol-powered FJ40 and its diesel-powered sibling the BJ40, became best-sellers almost overnight, and Toyota was already hard at work on further variants.
Above Video: This is an original Land Cruiser ad that was filmed in Australia for local consumption in 1978. At the end you’ll see an FJ45 on the far left.
Arguably the most important model in the series other than the original J40 was the J45. It debuted in 1963 as a pick up truck or chassis-cab, and a year later the four-door version debuted. Offered with both petrol (FJ45) and diesel (BJ45) engines, the J45 series became the backbone of many farms and they were used extensively in exploration, mining, and by tradespeople all over the world.
Today the FJ45 pick up is far less common than the FJ40, but they never seem to have any problem generating a swell of interest when good examples come up for sale.
The 1983 Toyota FJ45 Pick Up Truck Shown Here
The FJ45 you see here is one of the nicest we’ve seen in recent memory, it’s a 1983 model which was the second last year of production, and it’s powered by a rebuilt 4.2 liter 2F series engine that was good for 133 bhp and 210 lb ft of torque in factory specification.
Power is sent back through a dual-range transfer case and a 4-speed manual transmission, and it rides on live axles on leaf springs front and back. This truck benefits from a full restoration, it’s now wearing a period-correct Olive Green with a White roof, and it rides on Old Man Emu suspension, 15 inch gray steel wheels, and BF Goodrich Mud-Terrain T/A tires.
It comes equipped with a high-lift jack and a Warn winch, it has locking front hubs, and a new electrical system. Inside you’ll find new custom tan leather upholstery and an MP3 and USB compatible stereo that was carefully chosen to look as period-correct as possible.
The vehicle is now due to roll across the auction block with RM Sotheby’s in Arizona on the 25th of January with a price guide of $50,000 – $70,000 USD. If you’d like to read more about it or register to bid you can visit the listing here.
Images: ©2023 Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s
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