Monday, 30 January 2012

A brief history

ok …..
This blog is about my Toyota Land Cruiser BJ41 (1980) with the rare 2b engine. It’s a four cylinder 3.1 litre diesel with 4 speed transmission. It was produced for the Japanese domestic market only, but imported to Ireland by the previous owner. I had being looking for Land Cruiser for a while and came across one for sale in Kildare.  It had some body work done and had been resprayed red. The original colour was white. I would have preferred if the previous owner had kept the original colour, but then there aren’t exactly hundreds of BJ’s to choose from here in Ireland.

In the excitement for seeing it in the flesh I broke all the rules when inspecting a 30 year truck. The fact that I didn’t have huge mechanical knowledge didn’t help.

Things I would look out for in future
The obvious rust on the underside, below doors sills, underside rear bumper, play in steering, condition of suspension etc. .

My truck had all the problems noted above, but I was still undeterred from buying it J
A few things to note before purchasing a Land Cruiser.
They are effectively a tractor and don’t think otherwise, noisy and not very fast. Top speed around 100km/h (downhill). The lack of power steering and the required wider and standard wheels makes for strong arms in city driving. The BJ will run all day at 100km/p on motorways, but the noise can make any journey over 2.5 hours seem very long indeed. I have found the BJ most fun on secondary roads with lower speeds and better scenery.

The BJ is probably best known for its ‘work horse’ ability, due largely to its pulling power and go anywhere reputation. This is all true, however a note of caution to the unsuspecting would be Land Cruiser owner, as noted before the BJ is a 30 year old machine built for purpose with none of the comforts associated with modern off road vehicles. It will go anywhere and will not give any problems but do not expect all this on a cushion of air. The ride is frim and due to the short wheel base the BJ will hop and bounce if driven to fast off road. The BJ is best driven at slow speed (real slow) and with the right choice of gears.  

The best piece of advise I can give is, know and accept the limitations of a 30 year truck, then any journey can be an adventure with the fun and excitement  of doing it in an Icon that is the LandCruiser.

Am I happy ….. yes …. without question !!!

The BJ with its original colour as imported from Japan

The BJ when resprayed by previous owner

The BJ with proper steel wheels !!!! :)

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