News Vehicles

This Toyota LandCruiser goes very, very fast.

The Toyota LandCruiser, which holds an unofficial speed record.
The Toyota LandCruiser, which holds an unofficial speed record.

This big old Toyota LandCruiser has had a chop at getting into the records book, with a high-speed run down an operating airstrip in Mojave, California. It’s claiming the title of ‘world’s fastest SUV’, based on it’s recorded 340km/h. It won’t take a diehard Tojo nut to notice that this thing isn’t exactly original …


Most noticeably, Toyota has dropped the LandCruiser on it’s guts for the challenge as, making it much more aerodynamic, but will get hung up on a moderate suburban speed bump. Not so much chop for crossing the desert, right? They have also reduced the track width significantly, to allow the factory bodywork to accommodate the super-wide Michelin Pilot tyres. Once again, they might be fast, but probably wouldn’t stand up too well against the mulga stakes.

The Engine

The low-slung LandCruiser uses a modified version of the Toyota 3UR-FE, which is the 5.7-litre petrol V8 used in Toyota Tundra utes and Lexus LX570 4X4 wagons. Normally, it’s pushing out 270kW @ 5,600rpm and 530Nm @ 3,200rpm. Sure, it’s a strong V8 that tows well, but your garden-variety Lexus or Tundra isn’t going to come within a cooee of having enough power to pull over 300km/h.

Toyota LandCruiser 3UR-FE twin-turbo
Toyota LandCruiser 3UR-FE twin-turbo

For the extra 1,200-odd kilowatts, Toyota has slapped a couple of turbochargers off the engines. Each turbo is feeding 55psi of boost into the V8. The internal moving bits have been modified to handle the significant increase in stress, and the intake manifold is also a custom job to accommodate and optimise the ravenous amounts of boost. This is running through a completely different, race-spec gearbox, through to the super-slick wheels. We’re going to assume this LandCruiser isn’t 4X4 anymore.





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  • Hi Sam I think Chris implies that as a “Sponsored Motoring Journalist” you say what the sponsors of your magazine want you to say, even if it’s right or wrong! Pretty harsh criticism in my books. I think the everyday reader can tell if it’s “Fake News” or the real thing, although sometimes I get the picture that because someone is given a ‘FREE or LOAN” gift, vehicle or object they will see it in a better “LIGHT”! and report on how good it is. Thank god it does not happen in any Pat Callanan publication. By the way I enjoyed the video, Cheers

  • Oh I dunno Chris,nothing wrong with attempting a world record and seeing what it takes to get it there,in a controlled environment.Hi U.S. Airforce can we borrow your airstrip?These little side articles add a bit of interest to the mag and those mods to the engine are almost standard and cost effective these days.Engine needs to breathe,intake,exhaust,turbo/s,chip.Might start working on me Suzuki Ignis.By the way,that vehicle would’ve been engineered to the shithouse and better than errr factory,by the factory if you know wot I mean.Chill out fellow motoring enthusiast!

  • Sam Purcell, as a sponsored motoring journalist, you sir are a nob!
    Articles such as this have no bearing what-so-ever on the vehicles or modifications we can legally apply to our daily drivers nor promote responsible use of off road vehicles.
    Please leave this nonsense to publications that often feature vehicles that can’t and will never be road legal in AU/NZ!

    • Hi Chris, thanks for the feedback. I thought it was interesting, especially seeing the amount of engineering and thought that went into making such a big lump go so fast. Just because I’m never going to do it, doesn’t make it irrelevant in my books.

      I’m not sure what you mean by ‘sponsored motoring journalist’, unless you refer to a salary as sponsorship?

      I just asked my wife if I’m a nob, and she said “yes, sometimes you are”. So, I suppose you’re right in that regard.

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