Newbie Guide

Information for new 1998+ Toyota Land Cruiser 100 series and Lexus LX470 owners

Our Newbie Guide for the 80 Series Land Cruiser proven very popular, so we decided to compile one for the 100 series as well.

This guide is intended as a quick read for new owners and will hopefully point them in the right direction as far as obtaining service, help and support. This guide applies mostly to US based 100 Series (or Lexus LX 470's) unless otherwise noted.

The information on this list is a compilation of personal experience, submissions from readers and knowledge gained from belonging to the 100 Series email list and the forums on www.ih8mud.com

This guide should not be taken as a do all, end all. Personal responsibility should still be taken for any purchase or modification made based on the information supplied on this list. Slee Off-Road does not guarantee the correctness of the information or the content of this guide.

HOW TO INSPECT A USED TRUCK

We get asked a lot to inspect vehicles, or what should one look for when evaluating a used vehicle. Below is a list of items we look at. Some are specific to the 80 Series Land Cruiser and some are generic.

Body

Carfax is a good source for checking the accident history of the vehicle. However, unless the car was totaled even major accidents might not show up. This is typically the case then a car was repaired for the existing owner. The following are some items to look for in checking for accident damage.

Electrical

On vehicles where a lot of accessories were added bad wiring can cause endless headaches.

Interior

Indications that the interior was kept clean and maintained is normally a good indication of the overall owners attitude towards the vehicle. Do not confuse a detailed interior with one that was kept clean on a regular basis.

Drive Train


US Model Specifications

1998

Drivetrain
(Changes listed for the 1999-1998 are in comparison to the 80 Series US Spec Land Cruiser, the rest of the changes are listed with reference to the previous 100s Series Land Cruiser)

1999

2000

Drivetrain

2001

Exterior

Interior

2002

2003

Exterior

Interior

Drivetrain

2004

Interior

Exterior

Drivetrain

2005

2006
Interior

Exterior

Drivetrain

2007

Drivetrain


Lexus LX470 Differences

The Lexus LX470 share the same drivetrain and the 100 Series Land Cruiser, but there are distinct differences in both appearance and appointments. In some cases items that were added to the 100 Series in later model years, was available since introduction on the LX470. In some cases some items were never offered in the Land Cruiser. The major technical changes occurred at about the same time. Below is a partial listing of the different items from the LX470:

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006 LX470

Interior

Exterior



KNOW ISSUES


EXTERIOR

2.1 Getting the mud off

After that Sunday drive through the mud and dirt, the easiest and safest way to clean the underside of the truck is to use a garden sprinkler under the truck. This will soak the mud and dirt until it just falls off. In the end the truck will be clean and the driveway dirty.

2.2 Mud flaps

If you do decide to remove the running boards front mud flaps are available.

2.3 Snorkels - Why you need them!

Snorkels are needed when you expect to do a lot of deep water crossings. The snorkel requires drilling 1 large hole and a number of smaller ones in the truck. It essentially moves the air intake, which in the stock form is located in the passenger front fender, to the roof line.

Performance gains from the snorkels is often debated, but this should not be the first reason to install one.

When installing a snorkel on a US Spec 100 series the automatic antenna must be removed and replaced with a whip. A early 1992 Toyota Pickup antenna is a close fit, except that the lead is to short. It needs to be extended. The bottom of the antenna also has to be cut shorter and supported with a custom bracket.

2.4 What are those 4 holes on the back bumper

2.5 Trailer Wiring

3. INTERIOR

3.1 Cracking leather seats

The leather seats do crack eventually. Applying a good conditioner from time to time does help. The skins for the seats can be purchased and replaced, but this is an expensive option.

3.2 Installing a CB

Option 1: Replace stereo use regular single din stereo as opposed to double din which is stock Toyota. If using single din stereo then mount below regular stereo in extra space.

Option 2: Cobra "all in the mic" units can be installed under the seat or under the center console.

3.3 Installing auxiliary CB speakers

Interior dome light housings can be converted to accept small speakers. These can then be mounted to the roof liner. The transparent "lens" is then covered with cloth for a factory look.

3.4 Rear Drawer Systems

"The first thing a lot of 80 Owners do is remove the rear 3rd row seats and replace them with a storage system, which is very handy for storing all the recovery gear and those bits and pieces that we need to take 4-wheeling. Some have a fridge roller fitted so that a 12v fridge can be mounted safely and rolled out for access. The other benefit of storing everything in drawers is you still have a flat area to use and if you add a bed extension behind the front seats you can have a bed measuring approx 180cm x 145cm. There are many different types ranging from the basic do -it-yourself type utilizing plastic tubs and MDF (fine particle board) to the zinc plated light gauge steel or aluminum and sealed roller bearings. The upper market use the factory tie down points so that the seats can be replaced and no holes or damage is done to the 80 and when fitted look part of the factory design." - Mick Barson


3.5 Aftermarket Stereo's


3.12 Speakers for the front doors

4. Drive train

4.1 Factory lockers

4.2 Aftermarket lockers

4.3 Brake pad wear

4.5 Differential Gears - 4.1 vs. 4.88

5. Suspension

5.1 Better ride without the lift.
5.2 Larger Tires - Pro's and Con's
5.3 Can I fit 35" tires
5.4 Why replace a relatively new suspension
5.5 Changing shocks
5.6 Changing coil springs
5.7 Changing the torsion bars

6. Accessories

5.1 Grill Guards
5.2 Winch Bars
5.3 Winches
5.4 Auxiliary Lighting
5.5 Light Bars
5.6 Rear Bumpers
5.7 Tire Carriers
5.8 Nerf Bars
5.9 Recovery gear
5.10 Camping Showers

7. Driving skills and off-roading

7.1 Using Front and Rear Lockers
Courtesy of George Coyant.

In random order...

  • Don't use them on paved roads.
  • Disengage the front at least if you need to turn. Even momentarily.
  • Engage them just before you think you'll need them.
  • Don't go down steep hills with the front locker engaged.
  • If you go down hills with the rear engaged, be prepared to catch the rear end if it slides out.
  • Exercise them every now and then. Whilst parked, hit each button until you hear the compressor engage.
  • Have a locker/compressor cut out switch wired up (I think this is standard now).
  • Experiment over an obstacle. Get the feel of what each locker does and experiment with speed over the obstacle. You'll be amazed at what you can now just idle over.
  • They engage immediately but if there's a bunch of energy stored in the driveline, you may have to back off for a second after disengaging to have them physically disengage.
  • Change the diff oil after a 1,000 or so km.
  • Change the diff oils at say 20,000km intervals to help clear any muck in the diff housings.
  • Keep an eye on the air release at the solenoids. If you see diff oil spray out upon disengaging, the piston oil seal has gone. This used to be quite common, however the current seal is good if fitted correctly. It's fiddly.
  • If you're in a tight area and need to swing the rear out, you can engage the rear locker only and dump the clutch. It'll turn on its own axis...
  • Don't engage the front locker when reversing.
  • You can use air lockers in high range. In fact, can engage them at up to 100kph as long as one wheel on an axle isn't spinning.
  • If one wheel is spinning wildly, don't engage that locker.
  • By engaging them early, you'll save digging great holes in the track.

    That's enough for now...

    Cheers
    gc