Slee Off-Road E-Locker Guard Review

Mar. 30, 2011 By Jaime Hernandez

The Toyota Land Cruiser is a very capable four-wheel drive, admired around the world for its reliability and workhorse demeanor. Toyota’s flagship 4WD is widely used in Australia, Latin America, Canada and Africa for off-road expeditions and competition. In 1996, the Toyota Land Cruiser got both 1st and 2nd place in the Dakar Rally production class.

One of the most desirable Land Cruiser models in the U.S. is the FZJ80, made from 1993 – 1997. It’s the last of the solid-axle platforms with the 24-valve, 4.5L fuel-injection 1FZ-FE motor. The option for front and rear differential lockers is rare but does exist on some of these models.

It took nearly six years before we could find a good deal on a locked FZJ80. We finally took possession of a 1996 Toyota Land Cruiser earlier this year.  After getting our Toyota 80 Series, one of the first things we did was contact Slee Off-Road in Colorado. 

Slee Off-Road specializes in Toyota SUV off-road equipment. They have everything one would need to completely outfit their vehicle for a serious off-road adventure. From heavy-duty bumpers, racks and drawer systems to off-road suspension, Slee’s got it.

We decided to start with an essential component from Slee Off-Road: Land Cruiser Rear E-Locker Actuator Guard.

The Slee Off-Road E-Locker Actuator Guard is made from 1/4" Steel and comes with a black powder coat finish.


The Slee Rear E-Locker Guard is designed to protect the actuator and motor on 80 and 100 Series Land Cruisers. The factory E-Locker guard is made of thin sheet metal and does not protect the underside. The Slee rear E-Locker Guard is a much more suitable component for serious off-roading. It provides a mini skid plate on the bottom and a protective conch-like shell around the actuator.

The Slee Off-Road E-Locker Actuator Guard is a direct bolt-on application. No drilling, welding or notching is required for this mod.

Below is an overview of how to swap out your stock rear E-Locker guard with the heavy-duty Slee Off-Road guard.

Remove factory E-Locker guard on rear differential by loosening bolts.

Here is the E-Locker on the FZJ80 rear axle housing after removing the guard.

Next is removing the 4mm bolts that attach the actuator to the differential housing. There is no need to remove the actuator, just the two bolts on the side. A total of four 8mm x 25mm x 1.25 pitch bolts are used to hold the guard in place.

The Slee Off-Road E-Locker guard not only looks good, but it will help protect our prized possession from rocks and ledges we encounter off-road.

The boys at Slee Off-Road have been on many rocky trails around Colorado and Moab, Utah, to know that the rear axle of an 80 Series with a factory E-Locker guard is vulnerable to rock damage. The factory E-Locker guard works good for protecting the actuator from small rocks, dirt and mud, but it lacks protection on the underside from sharp rocks that sometimes sneak up on the trail. That’s why Slee developed the Rear E-Locker Actuator Guard.


The Slee E-Locker actuator guard modification was fairly simple to do. It took less than one hour to complete the job. Slee included great step-by-step instructions and both Christo and Ben were very helpful when we ordered it.

The piece of mind of having that extra protection has been great. We took the FZJ80 Land Cruiser to this year’s TDS Safari. We were able to keep up with heavily modified 4x4s in the Truckhaven hills. Even though we are still on stock suspension, there was no worry about damaging our E-Locker on a rock, and trust us, there were plenty of them. They don't call Ocotillo Wells “Rock-A-Tillo” for no reason.

This simple modification is highly recommended.  The benefits outweigh the cost of having to replace a damaged E-Locker actuator.

Look for more Slee mods on our Toyota FZJ80 Land Cruiser in the future.

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