Toyota FJ Bruiser is the 165mph stuff of childhood dreams
Toyota used SEMA to celebrate the launch of its new, retro-styled Land Cruiser by revealing the FJ Bruiser, an "unstoppable" offroader based on the original FJ Land Cruiser.
To design the most capable offroader ever, Toyota first called Toyota Racing Development in California to get hold of a tuned version of the company's current V8 NASCAR engine, producing 735PS (541kW) and hooked up to an ear-teasing MagnaFlow exhaust.
Getting a drivetrain to cope with the power was easy; the Bruiser features solid axles, front and rear Currie heavy-duty differentials and an Advanced Adapter Atlas transfer case for two and four-wheel drive via a Rancho Drivetrain Engineering three-speed automatic gearbox. The setup means that, in its lowest gear, the Bruiser can crawl at 12mph at 7,000rpm or hit 165mph in top.
As you can see, ground clearance shouldn't be an issue, but if it is, the Bruiser has a trick up its sleeve – a Camso track where you'd expect to find a centre skid plate. It's operated from the cabin, allowing the Toyota to caterpillar out of tricky situations without you doing anything as undignified as getting out to hook up a winch.
With the drivetrain sorted, Toyota's attention turned to the FJ Bruiser's body, designed to be functional while retraining the classic FJ look. To fit modern offroad tech in the enclosed space of a classic FJ, Toyota fabricated a full tube chassis and cage and then mated its creation to a strengthened custom frame.
Next came trailing-arm suspension from Fox, Eibach springs and 20-inch Method Beadlock wheels wrapped in 42-inch BF Goodrich Krawler T/A KX tyres.
Toyota completes the job with the interior, which gets Momo Daytona Evo seats retrimmed in paint-scheme-coloured plaid and, somewhat randomly, a Jackie Stewart championship steering wheel.
Marty Schwerter, Toyota Motorsports garage team manager, said: "Every year, we are fortunate enough to get to build a SEMA special project vehicle. With the return of the Land Cruiser to the U.S. Market, it only made sense to build a rock crawler, so this is our take on a 1966 Toyota FJ45 Pickup Truck. At first it was referred to loosely as 'The Unstoppable FJ,' but by the time it was done, it was a beastly vehicle, and so the team started referring to it as the 'FJ Bruiser.'"
The FJ Bruiser is just one of 19 cars displayed at Toyota's SEMA stand.