Towing w/ FJZ80

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Apr 10, 2011
Longview, Texas
Had to test out the new '80 last night via rescue mission...

My (non-mechanical) friend bought a 1995 Toyota 4Runner 5spd 4x4 on CL and it never made it home. I went up there to check it out and the entire cooling system is dry, and adding coolant results in it coming right back out near the firewall. I think it's probably one of the heater hoses, but can't get back in there to tell, and we decided just to tow it home. Unfortunately, it was 150 miles away and the cheapest local towing company wanted $650 to do the job.

This is what we did (see attached), using the LC w/ 208K on it that I bought just last week. Worked great and got it back without a hiccup! It was a bit over capacity, but handled everything great, even in Dallas traffic.
I was pretty worried about it, and we figured that the loaded trailer was anywhere from 1200-1700lbs over the towing capacity of the LC. The back of the 4runner was full of tools and spare parts and it had a full tank of gas. The sticker on the tongue of the trailer said it weighed 2200lbs empty.

But when it started moving as easily as it did.... I :D.
I thought I read somewhere that the UK towing capacity of our 80 series LC's is 7500lb. I haven't verified this, but it wouldn't surprise me. Glad it went well.
Yep, I also have seen where the overseas models are rated at 7500 pounds.

The only thing I'd be worried about on the 80 for an occasional load that may be a little over the US tow rating would be how the hoses are on it, too, especially the PHH. It would also be good to have the temp gauge mod so you can track the coolant temp better while towing.

Braking is a different matter. Best to have trailer brakes at the high end of even the US tow rating, but being careful for a tow like that above should work OK. Not sure you'd want to do that going through the mountains, though.
Sweet! Glad the tow was uneventful.
Not Surprised

I am not surprised it handled it well. I towed the trailer below fully packed from NC to NY. Only delay was a blown tire that we had to wait 2hrs for Uhaul to replace.
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If that 4Runner has the 3.0L V6, they are prone to head gasket failures. Hopefully it's only a hose.
Good luck.
I opted for the additional weight of that trailer over the dolly because of the brakes. I don't think I'd feel comfortable towing that without them.

Somehow, my gas mileage still clocked at 11.93mpg when I got home. :grinpimp: I'm getting 15.75 or so unloaded. Pretty pleased with the mileage, considering all that I've read about these. So far I've put about 700 miles on it, half of that with that trailer.

The 3.0 v6 usually seems to leak internally on HG failure from what I've read, and this is very much an external leak. Only time will tell... If it isn't raining tomorrow, we'll be tearing into it.
Your buddy owes you big time. Glad things went well.
its a blown hg on the 4runner, i had a 90 toy pick up with that 3.slow, 129k on it and had the recall done, it blew with flying colors hydro locking cyl #1, they normally blow toward the back of the engine due to that inconvieniently placed egr thats super close to the back of the head, and yes 80's can tow alot passed their tow rating, when my rig was stock, it towed a 5200 pound boat, with 7 people, cargo and a full tank of gas up to tahoe several times
The 80 will tow a decent amount, although not always safely (usually on the drivers part, myself included). I recently towed a tandem axle 14' dump trailer with a cord and a half of wet, freshly cut dollar eucalyptus in it.:hillbilly: The trailer weighs 5700lbs empty. It was slow going and I only towed it about 15 miles to my house. Unfortunately my 80 isn't set up with trailer brakes, so I started up my ~15% grade driveway I made it about 3/4 of the way up before it had nothing left and I stopped:confused:. At which point the trailer and load decided to drag the LC 100' back down my driveway before I put the trailer into a tree to stop from going back into the street.:eek::censor::doh::grinpimp:

Just be careful.
The 4runner:

We removed the bolts holding the crossmember supporting the transmission today, and lowered the transmission so that we could see a little more of the back of the engine. We then added coolant, at which time coolant started gushing out of the passenger's side head gasket area (toward the center) at the rear of the engine.

We then started pulling things off the engine and found an inch of standing coolant in between the heads. :doh: Back to work on that later... We're going to replace the HGs and every other seal on the way, because it is a PITA to get there.

chap79: Sounds like an adventure I'd like to avoid! Any photos?
Yeah the European tow rating for an 80 is 3500kg so just over 7700 lbs. As long as the trailer has decent brakes it'll tow that much all day with no issues. Just don't try to go to fast! :)

3.0 V6 - factory recall for head gasket.
3.0 V6 - factory recall for head gasket.

Unfortunately, this motor was already dug into and poorly put back together when he got it... so I doubt it would be covered.
Somebody tell me there was a better tranny design in the world than A343F... glad it carried over to my hundy too.

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