Lot 848: 1973 Toyota Land Cruiser
The Toyota Land Cruiser, in its many sizes, configurations and engines, has a long and successful history throughout the world. Patterned after the ubiquitous Jeep and Land Rover utility vehicles, the Land Cruiser demonstrated that Toyota knew about more, a lot more, than just economical cars.
Introduced in 1960 the FJ40 and its variants remained in production for a quarter century, the kind of longevity that demonstrates true value, quality and utility. They became indispensible in unsettled and remote areas of the world, hauled safaris through Africa, developed a devoted following among America’s off-road culture and have spawned a host of imitators. Not least was Toyota itself which in 2004 introduced the retro-styled FJ Cruiser to capitalize on the continuing image and popularity of the Land Cruiser some twenty years after the original’s production ended.
The Land Cruiser’s popularity and utility is reflected in the number of variants in which it was built. There were in fact so many that it is probably impossible to identify all of them, but they came in short, medium, long and extra long wheelbase, with a variety of roofs, half cabs, soft tops and doors, with four- and six-cylinder gasoline and diesel engines. They climb mountains, cross deserts, ford rivers, balance their way over rockfalls, haul kids, pick up groceries and in Maine they plow a lot of snow.
Land Cruisers are found in all kinds of places, including in the garage of the Paine Collection and the Seal Cove Museum. This 1973 FJ40 (short wheelbase) model is powered by Toyota’s 3.8 liter 125hp inline six with 209 lb-ft of torque. It drives through a 3-speed manual transmission and has 4-wheel drive with live axle and semi-elliptical leaf spring suspension. It appears to be completely original, finished in factory ivory white with black vinyl upholstery. It is equipped with a Fisher Speedcast plow mount complete with raised auxiliary headlights to clear the plow blade. There is a Toyota tool kit which appears to be complete and like new.
At the time of cataloging any roof, top or doors had not been found. The front seat cushions are torn but the seat backs are in usable condition and the side-facing rear occasional seats are sound. The body is sound and, remarkably for a vehicle set up for plowing, shows no evidence of rust-through. The original paint is dull but sound.
Many shops now devote themselves completely to restoring and maintaining old Land Cruisers, a good indication of the popularity and longevity of these rugged vehicles. There even is a shop in California (where else) which builds complete new vehicles with the VINs of old FJ40 Land Cruisers using updated engines, drivelines, cosmetics and materials, including important things like carbon fiber hardtops, air conditioning, V-8 engines and 6-channel stereos. They sell new for low six figures. The Paine Collection’s is less.
The Richard C. Paine Jr. Collection|
Bonhams, Owls Head, Maine
|Hammer Price (inc premium)||$12870|
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