I know everyone in the US covets the Land Cruiser 70 series Troop Carrier… but they very easy to setup badly (discussion in comments) : overlanding

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I know everyone in the US covets the Land Cruiser 70 series Troop Carrier… but they very easy to setup badly (discussion in comments) : overlanding

Here in Australia these big Land Cruisers (with 4.5L Turbo Diesel V8) can be legally upgraded to a 4.5T GVWR (10,000 lbs). While everyone thinks tha

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Here in Australia these big Land Cruisers (with 4.5L Turbo Diesel V8) can be legally upgraded to a 4.5T GVWR (10,000 lbs). While everyone thinks that’s amazing, the problem comes when you actually load it up that much.

Seeing real world vehicles like this and how they perform confirms my mantra “Keep The Weight Low” – I mean that in both senses – have less weight, and the weight you do have get it as low down as possible.

With so much weight on the roof and in the rear, it is extremely prone to massive wheel lifts, which seriously limits its capabilities. Josh has a heavy roof top tent and a folding boat on the roof. In the rear box he’s got a chainsaw and a ton of gear for it, plus lots of heavy recovery gear, etc.

This photo is a regular old “wombat hole” flexy section on the trails in Far North Queensland – near the Old Tele Track. It took me a few hours to realize I didn’t need to be scared of these – the Troopie was making everything look extremely difficult and scary, so I would go into it with an abundance of caution only to realize it wasn’t a problem at all and my Gladiator would walk right through it. With almost no weight on the roof, only a canvas canopy and the minimum of gear, off road my Gladiator still performs well.

Josh’s driving skill far surpasses mine, and I was continually impressed how perfectly he could bring the Troopie to the brink before finding a slightly different line to get through. I honestly don’t know if I could drive that Land Cruiser on these tracks – I’d be white knuckled the entire time just waiting for it to go over.

There were a couple of obstacles Josh had to back out of and go around that I drove right through, but there was also one notable one that Josh drove where the Gladiator on 33s bellied out.

Josh will head home in a few months and re-work the setup to be a lot lighter, and get the weight he does have a lot lower.

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