- Designed in California, the Toyota FJ Cruiser is a enjoyable and succesful SUV.
- The FJ Cruiser efficiently picked up the styling thread of the early Land Cruiser.
- This instance, up for public sale on Convey a Trailer till October 18, has 96,000 miles on the odometer.
With Toyota’s Calty design studio in California celebrating its fiftieth anniversary, what higher time to go poking by way of the Calty again catalog to seek out some trendy collectibles? The studio’s intention was to marry sunny SoCal automobile tradition with pragmatic Toyota underpinnings, and generally it bought the recipe precisely proper. So it was with the FJ Cruiser, a retro-themed mid-size SUV that was principally a 4Runner with extra enjoyable baked in.
This FJ Cruiser, up for public sale on Convey a Trailer—which, like Automobile and Driver, is a part of Hearst Autos—is from the final mannequin 12 months out there in North America, 2014. With 94,000 miles on the odometer, it is simply damaged in by Toyota requirements, and the Quicksand beige paint contrasts properly with the white roof. A shorter wheelbase than the associated 4Runner offers the 17-inch wheels a good chunkier look, and the pleasant round-headlight face captures the spirit of the unique FJ40 completely.
When it first debuted for the 2007 mannequin 12 months, the FJ Cruiser gave Toyota’s picture a much-needed shot within the arm. The model’s status for reliability and pragmatism was effectively established, however the FJ Cruiser helped put the enjoyable again in purposeful. Look! Three windshield wipers! Bizarre rear-opening half doorways! Retro facet mirrors!
And beneath, the FJ Cruiser was principally only a shortened 4Runner, which made it nice off-road. On the highway, nevertheless, the mixture of a thirsty 260-hp 4.0-liter V-6 and ponderous dealing with drew some complaints from the critics. In a evaluation of a 2009 mannequin, we summed issues up by writing, “Driving the FJ is like piloting a ship.”
Nonetheless, the FJ Cruiser was at the very least a far better-behaved on-road companion than the modern Jeep Wrangler with its twin reside axles. And apart from, a trucklike driving really feel is a part of the Tonka Toy attraction. If you need a RAV4, purchase a RAV4. The FJ Cruiser is constructed to show on a regular basis chores into expeditions.
This instance is claimed to have an accident-free historical past and has lived in New Mexico, Nevada, and now Washington—all pure habitats for Toyota’s off-road species. The charcoal fabric inside seems effectively preserved and may stand as much as loads of camping-related abuse. The mileage can also be within the candy spot of being low for a Toyota however not so low that you just will not wish to get out and drive.
With 67 cubic ft of cargo area when the again seat is folded down, and a roof rack and non-compulsory tow hitch for any extras, this FJ Cruiser is prepared for out of doors actions. Even higher, because the discontinuation of those vehicles, demand has remained excessive. Toyota might simply promote a brand new FJ Cruiser if it needed to, however till then, the FJ Cruiser stays wanted. It is a trendy collectible, one which’s prepared for journey.
This public sale ends on October 18.
Brendan McAleer is a contract author and photographer primarily based in North Vancouver, B.C., Canada. He grew up splitting his knuckles on British vehicles, got here of age within the golden period of Japanese sport-compact efficiency, and commenced writing about automobiles and folks in 2008. His explicit curiosity is the intersection between humanity and equipment, whether or not it’s the racing profession of Walter Cronkite or Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki’s half-century obsession with the Citroën 2CV. He has taught each of his younger daughters the right way to shift a handbook transmission and is grateful for the excuse they supply to be perpetually shopping for Scorching Wheels.