Welcome to Little Car in the Big City, where we highlight fascinating cars we found walking around a town that is known for being bigger than everything else, but where every car is fighting to stand out: New York, New York.
This Toyota Land Cruiser is a transplant in New York. It wasn’t sold new in the US, let alone New York City, but somehow it’s got the formula right. It fits here.
New York has been filled with all kinds of new-comers and immigrants since it was founded, and while some find that the city isn’t for them and move on, plenty make one of the boroughs their permanent home. It turns out the city is home to 3.1 million immigrants from all over the world, and while this truck may not be represented in that number, it’s still a recent arrival, and I think it ought to stick around too.
In my opinion, a short-wheelbase Land Cruiser is a great choice for Brooklyn. Though it’s tall (take a look at that Grand Cherokee in front of it), this truck still is pretty stubby, and it’s got taut overhangs that make should it relatively easy to maneuver through tight streets and between double-parked cars and delivery trucks, and those barn doors out back should help getting to the cargo area when parallel parked. Add in the real four-wheel-drive system to get moving when outer-boroughs plows forget to clear your block and I can see why its owner might like it keeping it here in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn.
I mean, aside from the fact that it’s pretty damn cool to look at, of course. I’m more used to seeing newer 70-Series Land Cruisers (online usually, unfortunately) in pickup or troop-carrier long-wheelbase 3-door form from Australia, Africa, and the Middle East, so it’s really neat to see one that’s both older and a three-door model. I particularly like the molded roof piece with the debossed “Land Crusier” script. Little details like that are one of the reasons I love Japanese cars of this era. But of course, we all do here these days.
The Land Cruiser 70-Series was introduced in 1984 and is still in production for some markets like Australia, Africa, and the Middle East. Though some 70-Series Land Cruisers are sold to miners in Canada, the model was never offered for sale in the United States, meaning that the earliest this 1986 model could have arrived in New York legally was 2011.
Now, other than that, I don’t know where specifically this truck came from. I didn’t look closely for any other clues, so I’m going to make the assumption that his particular truck came from Central America or Europe because every once in awhile a similar ptruck will come around on BringATrailer. This one from Spain sold for more than $18,000 earlier this month, for example. If you can tell from these photos or know this particular truck personally, let me know in the comments.