Howdy 80's Guys! I need some advice.

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate
links, including eBay, Amazon, Skimlinks, and others.

May 30, 2006
Kittery Point, Maine
Hi Guys, I've been a 60 guy for some time now but I think I'm ready to make the switch. My old 60 is just too beat and I need something new. I think that I'd like to step up into an 80. I've read the information posted about 80's but have a few questions for you experts. If you're anything like the 60 guys I'm sure you'll have some opinions. So here are my questions.

-What is your favorite year 80?

-I want a diesel. How hard will it be to find one?

-Would it be better to buy gas and do an engine swap?

-The engine is really the biggest issue for me. I really want to do a frybrid veggie oil system but my 60 is just too far gone to put the money into.

Thanks for all your help in advance.

Pretty hard


Sounds interesting. Maybe you can cook food in there too!

Good Luck...
If you want a diesel, you'll have to do a swap or buy one that has already had it done. Its pretty much impossible to import a factory diesel 80 series. The diesels offered were various versions of a 4.2 I6. There were both turbo and naturally aspirated versions.

If you're going to do a swap 91-94 would be the years to look for. They would be cheaper and if you decide to keep the original trans it would be an easier swap.
If having the bigger engine of the two that are available in N. America, then you should look for '93-'97.

If having air bags is important, then you should look for '95-'97.

I believe there are a few factory turbo diesel 80's running around in N. America, but the cost of admission is pretty expensive, just like doing a diesel conversion (factory or otherwise).

If having a newer diesel cruiser is the biggest thing you're after, then you might want to consider the Canadian-spec diesel 60 series in good condition to import from Canada. (No hassle with the 25-year old importation rule, etc...).

I'm trying to figure out a way to smuggle my HDJ81 into the US, but not sure if I can do it w/o doing something unconventional.

Good luck!

hey mainer - if you need an extra set of eyes on anything near Bangor drop me a line. I see a few pop up in Uncle Henry's or craigslist in your part of the state (southern-since that is where all the money is!!) but overall finding a clean 80 in the Northeast is rare. I found mine on this board and flew to DC to get it.

Forget the diesel 80... unless you really want a serious project. You'd be better off buying one of the occasional 60 diesel modded rigs that show up from time to time.
Go to the diesel section, there is a lot of discussion on diesel conversions. The Cummins is probably the one that has been done the most but it has it's drawbacks, noise and a 5" lift are the main things. There are some that have gone Toyota, it is the best option but it is hard to find the engines, parts etc. The next option is the Isuzu, it seems like a good choice in the fact that it is similar power wise to the Cummins but is much quieter and doesn't require the 5" lift but the engines are getting expensive and for me were hard to find. The last choice is the one I went with, the GM 6.2 diesel. I chose it for several reasons, first the engines are inexpensive, they are easy to find and parts are readily available and inexpensive. So far I really like the engine, my first road trip I got 20 mpg and I think with the correct tires I can improve on that.
Hope this helps, there are alot of options but a factory Toyota 80 series diesel is probably not one of them unfortunately.

Users who are viewing this thread

Top Bottom