Toyota Unveils the FJ Bruiser a SEMA Special Project Vehicle11/03/2023
Following the highly anticipated and well-received return of the Toyota Land Cruiser to the U.S. Toyota decided they would bring something special to this year’s SEMA show and it wasn’t the electrified Land Cruiser SE Concept. Instead, the automaker revealed a NASCAR engine-powered beast dubbed the “FJ Bruiser.”
The Bruiser, originally named “The Unstoppable FJ,” was a vision brought to life under the guidance of Marty Schwerter, the captain at the helm of the Toyota Motorsports garage team, with support from Toyota Racing Development in Costa Mesa, California.
With the return of the Land Cruiser to the U.S. market, Schwerter said “It only made sense to build a rock crawler, so this is our take on a 1966 Toyota FJ45 Pickup Truck.”
At the heart of the modern rendition is a modified TRD, 358 cubic inch V8 NASCAR Cup Car engine that boasts an impressive 725 HP. The power channel is coupled with a race-built 3-speed automatic Rancho Drivetrain Engineering transmission that sends an intimidating rumble through a MagnaFlow exhaust.
Retaining its old-school charisma, the FJ Bruiser comes with solid axles, paired with Currie differentials and an Advanced Adapter Atlas transfer case. This drivetrain setup enables the Bruiser to crawl at a slow pace or charge forward at speeds of up to 165 mph.
Should the Bruiser face a hurdle too high, a tank-like track system replaces the center skid plate ensuring an escape from any high-centered obstacle. This feature allows the driver to activate “Tank Mode” from the cockpit, eliminating the need to exit the vehicle.
In crafting a body that mirrors the classic FJ lines yet houses modern, rugged technology, the team engineered a full tube chassis and roll cage. Designed to smoothly sail over rough terrains, the Bruiser is fitted with a trailing arm suspension, Fox shocks, Eibach springs and massive 42-inch BF Goodrich tires.
At the interior, the Bruiser features a nod to the vintage, with Complete Customs re-skinning MOMO Daytona EVO seats in a plaid pattern reminiscent of the original FJ’s bench seat, topped off with a classic 1968 Jackie Stewart championship steering wheel.
Today, Friday, Nov 3, is the last day to catch the FJ Bruiser in person at Toyota’s SEMA booth #22200 in the Central Hall. However, if you can’t make it to Las Vegas, you can take a behind-the-scenes look at the Bruiser in the video below.
In other automotive news, Mercedes-Benz unveils updated V8 models for its AMG GT 4-Door coupé.
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