Nitro TRD Pro Land Cruiser 200 Series– We touched on this rig a few weeks back, but now with it attending it’s first event at Cruise Moab we wanted to detail the changes and additions since that time to get it ready for some rockcrawling. As you may recall we put one of these sweet Land Cruisers (ours is a 2008 model) into the fleet late last summer after selling off our long serving 100 series Cruiser. We’ve been using it to develop product and putting it together as our take on what a TRD Pro version of the 200 series would look like if Toyota had/were to build one.
Suspension– We started with a long travel setup using OEM Tundra lower control arms, Tie Rod ends, CV shafts, Billet Icon upper control arms, TRD Pro Bilstein 60mm Piggyback shocks with Internal Zone Control Progressive 3 rate dampening, Old Man Emu Rear Coils, 1.5″ rear wheel spacers for a 3″ Wider Track, 3″ front lift, 1″ rear lift for level stance that all adds up to a considerable increase in wheel travel. Under that modded suspension are TRD Pro 18″ wheels (same as our older Tundra project) and Nitto 285/75R18 Trail Grapplers. After running it that way for a while we thought the rear needed more damping and swapped in a set of Icon shocks to compensate for the weight being added and set the damping for a more comfortable high speed ride. The new shocks made a huge difference in rebound control taming it considerably on the bigger whoops.
Axles– Nitro Gear 4.88 gearsets are mounted to ARB Air Lockers front and rear with an ARB twin compressor mounted under the hood giving us the ability to air up the tires after a run on the trail. With Moab in the plans locking diffs were a must and the ARB units offer the strength and reliability we were looking for in this project.
Armor– This is a big Toyota and even with the lift and bigger tires we knew the belly and rockers would be vulnerable offroad. With that in mind we put a full ARB skid plate system underneath doing some minor modifications so this system (designed for the Aussie diesel model) so it would work on the US spec V8 powered cruiser. With fantastic strength to weight properties the ARB underbody skid plates give us a lot of piece of mind in the rocks and should slide over obstacles much easier as well. For the rockers we did a set of Slee Offroad units that are very heavy duty and still act as steps when needed.
Winch– Up front we used a hidden winch mount setup behind the oe bumper with a Warn 9.5XP winch running a Factor 55 thimble in the hawse fairlead. The solenoid pack was remote mounted under the hood and a Warn remote control unit added to allow winch control without opening the hood. Why the hidden mount? We just weren’t super excited about any of the winch bumpers out there for the 200 series and at least for now like the clean appearance the hidden winch setup gives us.
Interior– we ran out of time on a couple things before Cruise Moab, but did get an ARB dedicated locking fridge plug/harness installed to power our trusty ARB fridge on and ARB fridge slide/drawer for easy access. We’ll be installing additional drawers in the tail at some point in the near future as well to improve locking storage for better security.
With all the initial mods completed we’ve driven the 1000 miles to Moab and been putting this Cruiser through it’s paces this week on the rocks. It’s amazingly capable for it’s size, has great flex for an IFS rig and the lockers and gears have been giving the traction when needed. No doubt we’ll have some changes to make when it comes home, but for now we’re just having a blast using it and wheeling with friends, both old and new.