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Japanese Market Turbo Diesel: 1989 Toyota Land Cruiser

The FJ62 Land Cruiser is undoubtedly a popular choice for a 1980s square body SUV, with its bulletproof reliability and classic shape. Most enthusiasts would simply be happy to find one for reasonable money in good shape, but if you need to go one step further and own a Land Cruiser your neighbor isn’t likely to turn up in, a Japanese market-only turbodiesel is the way to go. This 1989 Land Cruiser is enroute to Chicago at the moment, straight from Japan, and it is loaded up with the factory high roof option, factory diff locks, and the turbodiesel 4.0L inline six. Find it here on eBay with bids to $9,300 and no reserve.

This Land Cruiser also sports all of the other elements that makes rigs like these so cool, like the graphics kit on the sides of the body, a burly-looking roof rack, rear ladder, and oversized tires. The desert sand color work well on a truck that looks like it could burst into the Sahara at any moment for a cross-continent journey, or be recruited into military campaigns in order to transport VIPs safely across hostile terrain. Its history is likely far less exciting, but the lack of visibility into its past is always a risk when buying gray market or JDM vehicles, as most importers don’t go to any great lengths to preserve the vehicle history once it shows up stateside.

The Toyota features right-hand drive steering, as you’d expect for a Japanese market vehicle. The interior is in excellent condition, and one of my favorite features of this gray market vehicles is the nicely bolstered bucket seats with the “Turbo” insignia stitched into the seat back. The dash plastics look to be in excellent shape, and even the rubber boots around the manual shifter and four wheel drive controls are still surprisingly lustrous. The carpets are clean, as are the door panels, and it would seem likely that this Land Cruiser was used quite gingerly despite its highly capable chassis that can passengers to some downright harsh places.

The engine bay is not exceedingly well detailed, but this isn’t surprising for a vehicle slated for export. They tend to look fairly rough while sitting on the loading docks. Maintaining a vehicle that was never intended for sale in the U.S. can be a chore, especially if parts are obsolete, a lesson I learned while I was cutting my teeth on the Toyota HiAce project I sold over the summer. There are plenty of workarounds to finding the obscure bits; you just have to be willing to do some homework. This is a wicked weekend trail rig, a truck you can use for some moderate offroad excursions and still look forward to driving home in when the fun’s all done. Bidding is light right now, but don’t expect it to stay that way!


  1. Avatar photo Derek

    Is it National Beige Week or something?

    Like 0
  2. Avatar photo DanaPointJohn

    Jeep would absolutely not want to see Toyota bring back this turbo diesel!

    Like 0
  3. Avatar photo Spud

    Buyer beware on this one. First, a quick Google shows that the same vehicle is listed for sale elsewhere for “$28,800” and is stated to be in Canada.


    The eBay ad claims that the car is in transit to Chicago, but from the pics it’s clear that the car is already in North America (could be Chicago, could be Canada, could be…..?) Just seems kind of hinky.

    And for what it’s worth, this vehicle wouldn’t be “gray market” since presumably it can be imported (or has already been imported) legally under the 25 year rule.

    Cool truck. I wonder what the real story is on its sale.

    Like 4
  4. Avatar photo Fred

    this can go right next to the brown international scout || rallye in my garage

    Yeah kind of sketchy add though

    Like 1
  5. Avatar photo Steve

    HJ =diesel
    FJ = petrol or gasoline

    Like 1
  6. Avatar photo Car Nut Tacoma

    Awesome looking Land Cruiser. I consider it a travesty that the turbo diesel version was never offered here in the USA. I would’ve bought one if it was available with a turbo diesel engine, provided there were places that could service them. What good is making a good quality engine and drivetrain if you don’t have a means to keep it running right?

    Like 0
  7. Avatar photo BobS

    In the video linked in the eBay listing, you can see a building in the background that shows a phone number with a 416 area code which is the Toronto, Canada.

    Like 3
  8. Avatar photo CharlesMann

    equals 120000 miles
    it is now over 15000 dollars
    seller is super hiding his bump bidders with
    private listing – bidders’ identities protected


    Like 2
  9. Avatar photo John Luther

    Noticed Interstate batteries in the engine compartment. Don’t know if they are sold in Japan. Looks like they have been in there a while.

    Like 0

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