Who said new is always better?
While 2020 may have had many contenders for most popular car, the internet is almost unanimous in telling us that the Ford Bronco is probably the most sought-after car for the year. Americans love going off-road, they love classic nameplates, and importantly, a whole lot of enthusiasts have been looking for something to rival the Wrangler for some time now. But from the folks at Classic Car Studio comes another alternative, a 1976 Toyota Land Cruiser FJ40 that's been restored and tweaked to the point of brilliance, and it looks ready to eat your Bronco for breakfast. Considering the Toyota Land Cruiser will soon be meeting its end (at least in the US), this restomod classic is an ideal way to get a slice of the nameplate's history.
According to CCS, the 1976 FJ40 arrived with 110,000 miles on the clock, before being subjected to a full frame-off restoration. That means every detail under the skin has been analyzed and fixed where necessary with genuine Toyota parts. Using the factory-fitted 2F engine - a 4.2-liter inline-six generating 135 horsepower and 200 lb-ft of torque - four-speed manual gearbox, transfer case, and differentials, this FJ is more a case of pristine restoration that restomodding.
Various items were replaced, however, including the cooling and fuel systems as well as all the aging lines and hoses. Meanwhile, the transmission, differentials, and transfer case were stripped, cleaned, and meticulously reassembled. Some upgrades have been made, though, including 37-inch tires and 5:29 gears, while the front differential now makes use of ARB air lockers compared to the Detroit locker on the rear.
It looks the part, too, with a fresh coat of military green paint over a gray interior. The front bumper has been upgraded to an ARB catcher's mask-design item, there's a Metal Tech roll cage, and behind the front seats, there's a ¾ Aqualu aluminum tub with the full Linex treatment.
Since the restoration, this FJ has completed just 10,978 miles, but it's now looking for a new home and is asking $46,900. The best part is, despite the fresh look, it's a fully functional FJ that can be reliably used off-road, and it's fully US road-legal.