Jonathan Ward and TLC4x4 cranked out this fantastic Land Cruiser.
We’ve featured machines created by the crew at ICON and TLC4x4 on these digital pages in the past – but when the resulting product is this good, we can’t resist doing so again. This time, the wizards at Jonathan Ward’s company built this 1996 Toyota FZJ80 Land Cruiser, one of the best-looking SUVs ever built. It is tremendous.
During the drive in this video, Ward explains the Land Cruiser has a stock 4×4 system, which is a 2-speed affair with high and low gears. They added an ARB locking rear diff to replace the stock unit which was of the one-wheel peel variety.
Under the hood is a LS3 engine, a 6.2L fuel injected V8 making somewhere in the neighbourhood of 430 horsepower. The task of taming those ponies is given to a 4L65E automatic transmission, also from the GM catalog.
The whole thing is a Stage 3 restoration, starting with client provided truck. It was torn down to the frame rails, which was then separated from the body and blasted with media. While they were at it, they assembled a suspension comprised of some Old Man Emu components and Fox Racing nitrogen charged shocks.
Those wheels are from Walker Evans and are wrapped in BFGoodrich KO2s, an apparent favorite of the build team – or at least the guy who runs the place. Hey, he does pay the bills after all.
Its exterior looks flawless, as you’d expect of something from Ward, with just-right details which look factory but are decidedly anything but. Check out the nicely integrated rock sliders, for example. The decision to paint front and rear bumpers body color was a good call and something Toyota should have done on the assembly line.
Which off-road rig from the House of Ward do you like the best?