What Land Cruiser to buy?

Joined
May 29, 2005
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Nova Scotia, Canada
Hi all,
I'm new to Land Cruisers. I have lots of Land Rover experience, but the total unreliablity of the Land Rovers convinced me to switch. I'm saving money right now to buy a Land Cruiser. I will probably have around $6000 to spend. I looked on ebay and there are FJ80s and FJ60s around in that price range. I realise that the FJ60s are older (duh!) but that doesn't necessarily mean the FJ80s are better. I read on the net that the 2F engine in the FJ60s is very reliable.
How about the engine in the early FJ80s? I think I could afford a '91 or '92.
What's the situation in the spare parts compartment? Are the prices for FJ80 spares a lot higher then the ones for the FJ60s? Are there good aftermarket parts available for the FJ80s?

How is the rust protection on the FJ80s? Any better then on the FJ60s?

I'm aware that I can't buy a perfect truck for the money I have, but I don't want to end up with something I can't afford to keep on the road, because parts are too expensive.

Thanks!
Herbert
 

semlin

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hi herbert

the 80s are much much much better for rust than the 60's. Something changed in the manufacturing process. apart from the upper rear tailgate there are no common rtust spots. I would , however, check the pinchwelds at the bottom of the doors if you live in a place where they use road salt.

cruiserdan on this board is a parts manager at a toyota dealer and sells us toyota parts at a very good price. We are all cost conscious, but you will not find much aftermarket part use here. It is hard to match oemn quality at dan's prices. i don't think you will see a big uptick in prices from 60 to 80. Also, remember the 91-92 80 has the same motor as the fj62.

the 3FE motor used in the 91-92 is a further iteration on the 2F and, so far as I know, is just as reliable. the 1fz after that is a completely different animal.

for that money you will get a high mileage vehicle needing some immediate preventative maintenance. I would set aside $1000 for immediate parts and 3 or 4 weekends to work hard no matter what you buy and then after that work is done, so long as you get was not completed neglected, I think you will find yourself with a great reliable vehicle hat drives like new even with a 200k plus 80. after the initial maintenance, you will not find you rongoing repair bill remotely comparable to a rover. Read a few recent threads here about model selection pros and cons and decide for your self if you want to try to stretch your budget to find a 93+ or will be content with a 91-92. My feeling is you will struggle to get a 93+ for that price and will have nothing left over for maintenance if you do.
 
Joined
May 18, 2004
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Seattle, WA
At that price range you can get a really nice FJ60 with no rust issues. For 80s I would look to spend closer to 12k if you want one in excellent condition.
 

landtank

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With some searching you could find an FZJ80 with the higher out put engine and possible Front and rear lockers in the 8k range. They are out there but you need some patience to find it. If you are looking to set the vehicle up for some offroading then the leaf sprung FJ60/62s will cost more as their suspension upgrades are more expensive. The factory lockers would also save you from having to spend money there as well.
 

SR.GRINGO

 
 
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Jun 18, 2004
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Go for a 93+ 80 with lockers--you will be much happier in the long run. I believe the 60 has around 163hp and the 80 has 212hp with the same gas mileage. The 80 is also full time 4wd. You will also probably end up with a sun roof and a 3rd seat in an 80. I like the 60 but for everday use the 80 is going to be much more comfortable. By the way 95% of the 93+ 80 has disc brakes with antilocks. I like mine so much I have been debating about buying another one :)
 

Junk

 
 
 
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The comfort of riding on coil springs all-round is really nice with the 80. Not to mention all the other improvements.

Some will disagree, but to me the 60 series is an abortion. You get the worst of the 40 series (leaf springs) and the worst of the 80 series wheelbase plus many other issues.

spend the 6k on an 80 and you'll still get a good deal - keep in mind that 80 prices will continue to fall for another 2-5 years then start picking up.
 

CruisinGA

 
 
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Got a great 80 (with some maintenence issues-nothing that has kept me from driving it) for ~$6k. Factory lockers too.

Get an 80.
 
Joined
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Red Triangle
I agree with semlin. The 3FE is a good engine in the 91-92 truck (similar to the 2F in the 60 series but 20hp more and fuel injected), but you will likely find it a bit underpowered if you're used to American V-8's, if you want 33" or bigger tires without regearing, or if you tow. I own a 92 and it was definately underpowered, but I happily put 100K plus on it before an engine swap.
I'd buy another 91-92, but the 93+ have a lot of nice features that weren't available on the 91-92 models. Rear disc brakes vs. rear drums, rear full floater vs. semi floater, fancier leather vs. cloth, nicer alloy 16" rims vs. 15" alloys, option for dual locking diffs vs. open diffs, 212 hp vs. 155hp, etc.

With the 91-92, you'll have a few bucks left over for accessories, but getting the 93+ with locking diffs would be nice.

Search some past threads and subjects, get a notebook out, and start compiling notes. You'll find a wealth of knowledge on these forums. Good luck.
 

semlin

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cloth was available but rare. Carfax is a good idea on any cheap internet truck. the truck may be a recent arrival to Az from the rust belt or it may be a former write off. also call the vendor and just ask if it's had any accidents or repairs. no straight answer = don't buy.
 

cruiserdan

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Cloth was standard for all years of 80 production. Power Leather seats were optional starting in '93. Grey only in 93-94 with oak being added in '95. The 40th came standard with tu-tone oak/brown leather.
 
Joined
May 15, 2005
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93 + for me

I like the 93+ because of the added power/lockers and other upgrades. I bought my 93 Cruiser off of ebay for under $7K including the plane ticket and gas home. It was a private owner and he had the maintenance records/inspections. Carfax/autocheck all checked out so I took the leap after a few lengthy phone calls to speak with the owner. Glad I did. I got a good deal and the Cruiser is a clean Cali truck. The paint and underside are nearly spotless. I wanted a 95+ w/lockers and all, but this was too good a deal to pass up. I tried to find one locally for a long time. Nothing ever came up in my price range that was in decent shape. Take your time and keep looking. Something is bound to turn up.
 

gregc

 
Joined
Nov 27, 2004
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Central Massachusetts
The other side of ebay: NEVER buy a vehicle that hasn't been checked out.

I bought a '94 unlocked LC on ebay about a year ago, sight unseen. My rig had 160k, no lockers (didn't know the significance at the time) and a spotty service record.

There's more rust on the truck than I'd like, the PO had the rear heater hose removed; the birfs needed to be redone; the front ball joints were gone; steering box leaked pretty badly; there were several dings in the windshield; the driver's outside mirror did not adjust at all.

On the plus side, the engine runs smooth; compression is good on all cylinders; the truck is generally solid, and the interior is in decent shape.

Had I seen the truck (and driven it around the block once) I would have RUN AWAY and waited for the next auction.

It's more a cautionary tale about buying an auction truck sight-unseen....I love my '94 and just wish I had checked it out before buying. It's all about the T O Y O T A on the front :-D

G
 
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Explain please, the locker thing to me. After a long market analysis I have decided on a 93+ 80 series with under 130K miles, but all the ones I have seen do not have lockers, yet the 91-92 did I think. With the 93+ transmission are lockers not necessary? If they are necessary why were they not standard and why are there so few around?
 

semlin

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read the faq link to diffs for dummies. the 91-97 all have a central differential lockers. the 93-97 had an option for switchable front and rear lockers. The short answer is that they enable you to keep going when all but one wheel has lost traction. With a CDL you keep going if you have traction either on both rear or both front wheels. With regular 4 wheel drive and an open differential you lose power to the other 3 if one of your 4 tires loses traction. They are a rare option because most people did not buy these trucks to take offroad. front/rear Lockers are highly desirable for offroad vehicles. The onyl north american vehicles to have them from the factory are the 93-97 80, the g wagen and the jeep rubicon. Many people spend thousands to add them later to their trucks.
 
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