Monday, January 7, 2013

Matchbox 1968 Toyota Land Cruiser (FJ40)

Matchbox 1968 Toyota Land Cruiser (FJ40)


Got this from my son this Christmas. A 1960 Toyota Land Cruiser (FJ40) made by Matchbox. A classic off road vehicle that has left a lot of people smitten with its rugged yet simple design. According to the stamping at the bottom of the toy its built by Matchbox in 2008 from their factory in Thailand.

Matchbox 1968 Toyota Land Cruiser (FJ40)
A couple of months back I got my son and Tomica FJ Cruiser because of my affinity with the FJ40. We had one in our house for a short while as the farm my Dad was working in issued it to him temporarily while his regular company vehicle was in the shop. The FJ40 was bumpy as heck but she sure had the neatest lines.

Matchbox 1968 Toyota Land Cruiser (FJ40)

My heart still skips a beat whenever I see one rumbling down the highway, which isn't quite often now. Looking back, I realized that its been 30 years since I rode in one. Boy, that sure would be a fun experience, getting on an FJ40 again.

Matchbox 1968 Toyota Land Cruiser (FJ40)

I'm usually all praises when it comes to the Tomica line of diecast toys, but when it comes to the FJ40 release I'm going to have to say that I'm going with the Matchbox version. Matchbox's version has the better design proportions. The one from Tomica has the engine too long out in front. The detailing however of the Tomica version is quite precise.

Matchbox 1968 Toyota Land Cruiser (FJ40)

I also love the stubby wheels of this version by Matchbox. The real life FJ40 didn't have stubby wheels when it came out of the factory, but the one my Dad drove had small stubby wheels and shiny rims and I have to say that that FJ40 looked way cool than the standard factory version.

Matchbox 1968 Toyota Land Cruiser (FJ40)

Noticeably missing from this toy is the spare tire that hung from the back that was staple to all FJ40's. But that's no biggie considering they were able to replicate very well the back door part of the FJ40.
Matchbox 1968 Toyota Land Cruiser (FJ40)


Love how Matchbox was able to replicate the Toyota name logo in the front grill. It's always the minute details that manufacturer puts in that sells the toy for me on whether it is great or not.
Matchbox 1968 Toyota Land Cruiser (FJ40)
Shot of the underside of the Matchbox FJ40

Matchbox 1968 Toyota Land Cruiser (FJ40)

I guess what really appeals to me with the FJ40 (aside from the great design) is the thought that this is how off road vehicles were supposed to be. They were meant to be lacking in creature comforts so that simplicity of design could be inculcated into its frame.

Matchbox 1968 Toyota Land Cruiser (FJ40)

Simplicity of design is one of the tenets that hold well in a true off road vehicle because simple designs more often than not equates to reliability. Reliability means that your vehicle will not easily breakdown during those solitary long hauls in the outback wilderness where the failure of your machine could cost you your life.

Matchbox 1968 Toyota Land Cruiser (FJ40)