We’ve assembled an incredible list of modified machines for the inaugural Custom 4X4 Of The Year award.
Billy McKinnon’s FJ45 Troopy was literally a dog kennel when he first found it. After hosing the neglected – miraculously rust-free – Cruiser out and dragging it home, Billy set about turning it into arguably the best FJ45 Troopy in the world, and that’s no exaggeration.
Billy combined the chassis from an 80 Series Land Cruiser with the 45 body and set it back on the frame to push the front axle forward for a better approach angle. A slight reworking of the rear arches was all that was required. The wider 80 Series axles pushed the wheels and tyres out a further 100mm on each side, so Billy constructed a series of reinforced tube wheel-arch flares that also tie the front and rear bars in the sliders.
The old engine was replaced with a 5.7-litre LS1 V8 with a TH400 auto transmission sending power through a Chevy-sourced NP205 transfer case. A GTX42 turbocharger and front-mounted intercooler was slotted in, pushing out 340hp at the wheels on its first dyno run.
New crossmembers and engine mounts were fitted for the updated drivetrain, as well as upgraded injectors. A full 3.5in custom exhaust with a Hooker muffler was also installed.
To match everything up, a GQ Patrol rear axle was installed and a high-pinion front from a GU Patrol with LSD internals was fitted. Up front there’s a GU Patrol steering box on custom mounts, with a chromoly draglink attaching it to the Cruiser’s front axle.
The chassis was lifted 50mm by EFS suspension. The coils were combined with four-inch-longer RAW 4x4 shocks, making room for a set of 37in General Grabber SRLs wrapped around 17in Dynamic steel wheels.
The Dune Beige 416 Troopy has a custom wrap-around tyre carrier with the pivot point near the passenger rear wheel – allowing an impressive departure angle. A Warn 8274 winch upgraded with a Warn 6hp motor and braced housing handles duties up front.
The driver and passenger seats are Corbeau race seats, and a digital gauge unit monitors all engine vitals.
Vote for Billy's FJ45 Troopy hybrid to decide this year's Custom 4x4 of the Year.