1997 Toyota Prado TZ
Toyota's 90 Series Prado may not share the same size and stature as its bigger 80 Series brother but it is every bit as capable, comfortable, and charming. Sporting a near indestructible turbo diesel motor paired with a slick-shifting 5-speed manual and 4x4 drivetrain, this J95 is certainly worthy of the Land Cruiser marque, and can typically be had for a fraction of the cost of other diesel manual Toyotas. This one-owner 1997 TZ boasts just 100k verified/documented miles and is a neat little cruiser sure to turn heads both on and off the beaten path. Finished in an eye-catching Stellar Blue Pearl/Gray Metallic two tone (K14) This Prado is set off by a sleek graphics package, OEM front brush guard, OEM rainguards, a rear ladder, and rear lollipop mirror. Fresh off a recent service, this eight-seater is turn-key ready for your next putt around town or camping adventure! Robust yet reliable, the 90 series is yet another Japanese Classic Toyota sure to keep its next owner grinning from ear to ear.
Perhaps the biggest benefit of owning a classic 90's Land Cruiser is the sheer amount of space and amenities that the cabin is able to offer. 3rd-row seating comfortably allows for the transport of up to 8 passengers, with ample head and legroom available for all. The driver's seat is a great place to be in this Prado, a low profile dashboard allows for superior visibility on the road, and the dash materials are clean and crack-free as well. The patterned grey upholstery is accented by a luxurious tortoise trim, also in equally good nick. Fans of OEM equipment will be pleased to note that the OEM head unit and altimeter/clinometer are in good working order, and the rest of the power amenities function quite well, including the automatic climate control with ice-cold A/C. Power windows, power-folding mirrors, and power locks are all fully operational and a power moonroof tilts and slides fore and aft, with the push of a button. The middle row folds flat and quickly transforms into extra storage space if needed. While the interior certainly shows well for a 25 year old vehicle, some defects are to be expected, and we must note some expected wear on the front door cards, emergency brake boot, and staining on the 3rd-row seat. Other than that, it's hard to complain about the interior, and we even have the original owner's manual, carpeted floor mats, and rubberized trunk liner to boot!
While the Prado does bear the Land Cruiser maneplate, most of the running gear is shared with the 3rd generation 4Runner, making servicing these righteous rigs a walk in the park. Of course, the intercooled 1KZ-TE engine was never offered for sale here in the states, but with bulletproof construction, a recent service in-house and plenty of aftermarket support this 3.0 should happily chug along for years. The motor fires to life care of 2 new 12v batteries and idles confidently, thanks to a fresh oil and filter service and all new accessory belts. The turbo diesel powerplant shows no hesitation getting up to and maintaining highway speeds, with plenty of down low torque on the ready to propel you out of sticky situations. The 5 speed manual transmission is silky smooth, and a selectable transfer case allows the full time 4wd system to switch between high and low gear, with a locking center diff option for any off road emergencies. For a rugged SUV, the ride quality is surprisingly plush, the factory suspension allows for plenty of ground clearance to clear road imperfections large and small, and we even installed 5 new 31" Falken tires to make the journey ahead comfortable and carefree for tens of thousands of miles to come!
*California Residents: In order to register a Grey Market vehicle in the state of California then it will have to be made CARB compliant first. CARB certifications will have to be performed within the state. Depending on the vehicle and any existing modifications will affect the pricing. Typically CARB compliance will range between 5-10K. Additional information can be found on the California Air Resources Board website.