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Rare Turbo Diesel: 1991 Toyota Land Cruiser BJ73

The saying goes, “if you want to go into the Australian Outback, take a Land Rover. But if you want to come back again, take a Land Cruiser.” As with many 4×4 models, the Land Cruiser story begins in WWII, and Toyota was tasked with reverse-engineering an abandoned American Bantam GP. Various evolutions in design and capability meant that the Land Cruiser became its own model, entirely separate from the original inspiration, though it still retained body-on-frame construction, live axles, and nearly unmatched off-road capability. Coupled with Toyota’s legendary reliability, the Land Cruiser has been a wildly successful off-roader and is popular in some of the world’s harshest climates. You can find this one here on eBay where the current bid at the time of writing is $18,100.

This example was imported to the U.S. from Spain in 2020 and was reportedly used by the previous owner as a recreational vehicle. Highlights include a folding windshield, diesel four cylinder engine, five speed manual transmission, two-speed transfer case, off-road instrumentation including altimeter, pitch, and roll, air conditioning, and a two-door hardtop body style. The body and frame are exceptional for an off-roader, and while there are some minor dings here and there, everything looks clean, straight, and, most importantly, clear of major rust.

The removable FRP hardtop and interior are in good condition as well, both clear of stains and rips in the cloth. Patterned gray cloth seats with vinyl sides are included, with matching gray interior plastics. Images of the dashboard show an appropriately low (for a diesel engine) redline of 3500 RPM, and about 173,000 kilometers, which translates to about 107,000 miles. This being a Spanish-market example, all measurements are in metric.

The seller notes a rare diesel five-cylinder was optioned, but I only count four fuel injectors in the engine pictures. A quick web search turns up very little on the rare Motori engine, but reading the included pictures of the vehicle’s original documentation brings up information on a 2.5L four-cylinder. Regardless of however many cylinders it has, the Motori engine was indeed a rare option, though Land Cruisers were available with dozens of different engine and transmission combinations from the factory over its several decades in production and global sales market. Its rare engine, capability, and reliability would make it a perfect addition to any Toyota fan or off-roader’s garage.

Comments

  1. alphasud Member

    One of these was up for sale in my area. Also from Spain and with the VM engine. The Toyota Diesel engine is the one to have as the VM engines are not as robust and repair parts are all but non existent. To buy this you might also plan for an engine conversion down the road.

    Like 3
  2. ace10

    Definitely not the engine to own.

    Like 2
  3. Car Nut Tacoma

    Awesome looking Land Cruiser. I consider it unforgivable that this was never offered in the USA. While an FJ62 was a cool vehicle, not everyone needs or wants a 5 door Land Cruiser. I would’ve preferred mine with a turbo diesel engine, and possibly automatic transmission.

    • Shawn

      Hey Car Nut Tacoma,

      Thought I’d let you know I have a JDM BJ74 (looks just like the BJ 73 above) that I’m about to put up for sale. It’s an AUTO trans, Toyota 3.4 13BT Turbo Diesel, front and rear factory cable lockers and electric winch. I know your comments over a year old, but if you’re interested, let me know. I’m close to you as I live in Gig Harbor.

      Thanks,

      Shawn

      • Viper

        by any chance you have for a 91 BJ 73 (12v)

        BOSCH Diesel Glow Plug Relay 0 333 402 520
        and any other 12v relays.
        How much are you asking for the engine and

  4. chrlsful

    Isn’t that the fiat/GM diesel? Wonder if Toy uses the Brazilian diesel (2.8?) as they throw anything in ’em at the factory…
    Typical corporate think world-wide, any industry. “Build yer brand, sell, sell, sell. Go for profit buy using ‘lesser’ – they go for that brand even w/the change/lower quality.”

  5. angliagt angliagt Member

    It’s located in Fenton,Missouri.

  6. Martin Sparkes

    I had a Jeep with a 4 cylinder Motori diesel. It did not seem to be a very good design, although I am not sure it was the same as it was a 2005. The rocker and cam assembly were actually in the valve cover so you could not just pop the cover off to set valves or deal with issues. It was a very big deal pulling it apart, and dropping the heavy mess back onto the valves correctly was infuriating. The engineer should have been taken behind the woodshed and shot. Since it blew a head gasket once and coked up solid another time, I became unpleasantly familiar with the procedure. I sold it after the head gasket went the second time to let someone else suffer and bought a ….Land Rover which I still have and has proven bulletproof.

    • GCS Member

      Neat beast until I read the diesel comments…what’s the HP and torque rating? It sounds too scary to work on..Too bad. The truck looks great…

  7. CJ

    Hey all! This is MY cruiser as of last May. Funny to see it on here. It’s in impeccable condition, I’ve put maybe $500 into the engine to freshen it up but otherwise it’s spent the last year cruising the rocky mountains of Colorado. I do plan to replace the engine with a modern Cummins diesel once it gives out but at this point it feels like it’s at least got another year in it. Profitt Restoration will be doing the engine swap.

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