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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I am curious why Toyota engineers went with an Independent Front Suspension (IFS) on the new FJC. It would have been my first question to the Toyota gang at the Ojai, CA event. Ride quality too stiff? Being that Toyota is after the off-road vehicle buyer (rear locker, rock rails, transfer case lever, etc.), I thought for sure they would have raided the existing overseas market part bins for leaf springs and a live front axle. Knowledgeable Toyota truck fans loved the 1980-1985 pickup's for their front ends because they were bulletproof, simple, easy to lift, and excellent off-road. I would also think it would be less expensive to mass produce, but knowing Toyota, I am sure it's less expensive to build the FJC with the IFS setup. Any thoughts members?


2007 FJ Cruiser w/IFS

A couple of Constant Velocity (CV) axles used on IFS trucks like the Tacoma and the new upcoming FJC

1980-85 Toyota truck live axle setup (slightly modified)
 

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well.... without opening a whole messy bag of worms... i think it has to do with the fact that 1) the majority of the american market doesnt really care enough about 'wheelability to mind the IFS. with a skilled driver it can take you a lot of places, most of those it cant are not places (most) people who buy/drive SUV/4x4s in the US really want to go. thus road manners/ride quality become more important than off-road characteristics/suitability. 2) its based on the Prado platform, which has IFS. cheaper to use that than modify it for Solid Axle. and while they have all manner of parts lying around other markets that could build a suitable solid axled rig for US, the infrastructure probably doesnt exist to get them to the proper place; they may be the wrong width for the chassis; etc. basically they are sticking with the existing setup because they dont need to make it SFA to sell it here.

Im with you, though. i would like to be able to get a 2008 or 2009 SFA diesel FJ Cruiser. are you Listening, Toyota?
 

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All of us over at TTORA have repeatedly asked Toyota and their engineers to bring back the solid axle on the Tacomas...or at least make an option for it. Their answer...they already get too many complaints from consumers who say the truck rides too rough as it is. The majority of people here in the US who purchase trucks and SUV's nowadays expect them to ride like a Cadillac. People that actually take them off-road are in that one percentile demograph that purchase the vehicle for that specific use. And Toyota is certainly not gonna cater to that one percent. The only way you're gonna get a 'factory' solid axle Toyota here in the US is to import one! :)
 

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"If you build it, they will come..."

Did you guys hear that?
 

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TACOZILLA said:
The majority of people here in the US who purchase trucks and SUV's nowadays expect them to ride like a Cadillac. People that actually take them off-road are in that one percentile demograph that purchase the vehicle for that specific use. And Toyota is certainly not gonna cater to that one percent. :)


Sad but true... This is the way it is folks. If Toyota ever catered to the 1 percent, it would be a limited or special addition Fj costing around 50K.

(Kind of like what Ford did with the F-150 harley edition...)


Sad but true... :(
 

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Wrangler's sell well with SFA's, Toyota could have done the same with the FJC and I don't think it would have hurt sales if that's the crowd they are targeting the vehicle towards.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Ben said:
Wrangler's sell well with SFA's, Toyota could have done the same with the FJC and I don't think it would have hurt sales if that's the crowd they are targeting the vehicle towards.
I agree BEN. It must have to do with production costs. The SFA setup would not hurt FJC sales in my opinion, but would reinforce that Toyota is building a true off road SUV, not a "poser".
 

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How many SFA vehicles are sold these days in the U.S. Isn't it just the Jeep TJ and the Dodge powerwagon? There are plenty of people who wheel IFS vehicles, and as long as they are designed to give good wheel travel and to be durable they will hold up fine unless you are doing some extreme rock crawling. Lets not even get into the idiot drivers who will try and drive these things like racecars, solid axles just don't move well at high speeds, and there would bound to be some idiots who would roll these and use that oppourtunity to sue Toyota for their stupidity and get millions of dollars.

Don't get me wrong, if this thing had a coil sprung SFA i would probably trade in my XJ as soon as I had enough cash to pay for the rest of the truck, but it appears as if I will be waiting for my Jeep to die before I can pick one of these up.

Oh, its not "poser" its "poseur" Sorry just a pet peave of mine ;)
 

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mpd8488 said:
How many SFA vehicles are sold these days in the U.S. Isn't it just the Jeep TJ and the Dodge powerwagon? There are plenty of people who wheel IFS vehicles, and as long as they are designed to give good wheel travel and to be durable they will hold up fine unless you are doing some extreme rock crawling. Lets not even get into the idiot drivers who will try and drive these things like racecars, solid axles just don't move well at high speeds, and there would bound to be some idiots who would roll these and use that oppourtunity to sue Toyota for their stupidity and get millions of dollars.

Don't get me wrong, if this thing had a coil sprung SFA i would probably trade in my XJ as soon as I had enough cash to pay for the rest of the truck, but it appears as if I will be waiting for my Jeep to die before I can pick one of these up.

Oh, its not "poser" its "poseur" Sorry just a pet peave of mine ;)
He's right. I totally plan on driving mine like I stole it.... I won't get as much trail time as others. But, when I do get a chance to play in the dirt it will be at high speeds. I'm not into rock crawling... think Rally, think Baja... I want to blow through trails like I'm headed to a fire, I don't want to be in first gear in four low all the time. That sounds more like a walk than a drive. I would rather have a beefy IFS setup, than a solid axle.
 

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If it will handle the Rubicon in stock form what more do you need. I don't think we should complain that Toytota is not selling a rock crawler buggy.

On the other hand a friend has a 96 TLC and it does ride like a caddy with solid up front.
 

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LRJ4X4 said:
If it will handle the Rubicon in stock form what more do you need. I don't think we should complain that Toytota is not selling a rock crawler buggy.

On the other hand a friend has a 96 TLC and it does ride like a caddy with solid up front.

Were not really complaining. Just an option that some of us have had in the past that works great on the trails. We're just typical Americans....nothing is ever good enough.
I want the smooth caddy ride to work everyday, but I could care less about that when I'm on the trails... Just want the best of both worlds !!!
 

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LRJ4X4 said:
On the other hand a friend has a 96 TLC and it does ride like a caddy with solid up front.
It's weight and wheelbase probably have a positive effect on the ride and the FJ wouldn't have that advantage.

I will agree though that they had a real good ride for having a SFA. I had a '91 and more than once I got compliments on how well it rode and I'm talking off-road. I did a long stretch of washboards at 30mph once and it felt like the truck floated over them, my coworkers were amazed.
 

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I looked at about 20 off-road racing sites yesterday and on the race trucks, baja, what have you - almost all of them were IFS. I'm not the least bit disappointed that it is coming with IFS stock. If it's good enough for Baja, it's good enough for me.
 

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IFS is desirable in Baha because it allows for faster wheel travel and better absorption of energy. Those trucks are jumping in the air and taking hard corners. They need to perform like a race car and a Solid axle does not give optimum performance in those situations.

However, I live nowhere near any deserts and my wheeling involves traversing rocks, ditches, ruts, etc, which are much better suited for SFA. I try not to get going to fast because right now I can't really afford to break anything and my vehicle is also my daily driver so I try to be careful. I would have no problem wheeling with IFS, but I just happened to find a SFA vehicle that suited my needs and cost restraints.
 

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mpd8488 said:
IFS is desirable in Baha because it allows for faster wheel travel and better absorption of energy. Those trucks are jumping in the air and taking hard corners. They need to perform like a race car and a Solid axle does not give optimum performance in those situations.

However, I live nowhere near any deserts and my wheeling involves traversing rocks, ditches, ruts, etc, which are much better suited for SFA. I try not to get going to fast because right now I can't really afford to break anything and my vehicle is also my daily driver so I try to be careful. I would have no problem wheeling with IFS, but I just happened to find a SFA vehicle that suited my needs and cost restraints.
I think they should meet both of our needs and offer a SFA option. I would bet that as more enthusiasts get their hearts set on an FJ, more and more tailored options will be available. Me personally, I'm not interested in rock crawling with a $25K vehicle. I'll rent a 4-wheeler for that type of crap. I want to be able to kick up rooster tails of dirt at over 70 and possibly catch some air in the desert. Hell, I might try to race the open-class at SCORE after I get my FJ or run it in a tough truck competition. IFS will be better suited for me. But, like yourself, I would like to see Toyota tailor options for this supremely badass truck for both of our needs. I think that if they can provide options for both the rock-crawlers and the weekend warriors we will all be happy.

Honestly, I plan to have my truck setup to outrun others. I want to be prepared for the inevitable homeland invasion by terrorists. I want to be able to get to the mountains quickly and disappear if necessary. IFS is going to meet my needs better than SFA. But for yourself and others who want the ability of SFA, I would like to see Toyota meet your needs as well. There is no reason that this truck can't meet both of our needs.

I'll skip the VSC, Trac, ABS, Air bag crap - but, I want the supercharger and the donohoe racing setup! I don't want to be the guy leading a jeep up rubicon. I want to be the guy jumping over the jeep on a baja style trail!
 

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LRJ4X4 said:
If it will handle the Rubicon in stock form what more do you need. I don't think we should complain that Toytota is not selling a rock crawler buggy.

On the other hand a friend has a 96 TLC and it does ride like a caddy with solid up front.
My '95 FZJ rides much better than my wife's '96 4Runner. I currently have an OME suspension and 305's, and it still rides much better than my 4Runner, both on and off road. I feel a coil sprung SFA rides better than IFS in most trucks and wagons. In fact, the Heep Grand Cherokee was riding on a SFA until '04 and nobody knew the difference.

The problem arises when you leaf spring a SFA and have a lighter truck to boot. I had an '85 on 305's and it was BRUTAL on the street. I would rather have IFS than leaf sprung SFA for daily driving.

Toyota will never give us a SFA in The FJ Cruiser. The only hope for an SFA is a 3/4 of 1 ton Tundra..
 

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Dirk said:
Toyota will never give us a SFA in The FJ Cruiser. The only hope for an SFA is a 3/4 of 1 ton Tundra..
You're right, but first they need to build a competitive half ton that actually grabs some significant market share before they can even dream about building a heavy duty pickup.

I would bet that a few years down the line this forum will have a tech section with a lot of threads about solid axle swaps.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Ahhh...The brand new upcoming 2007 Tundra. This is an FJC forum, but I have heard the upcoming Tundra as going to have GM, Ford, and Dodge shaking in their boots. This time Toyota is forgetting "politics" and is going head to head with the big boys lucrative "bread and butter' market. FULL SIZE this time around, not a 7/8 size like the current Tundra. Also read rumors about 3/4 and 1 ton versions and a turbodiesel engine. Will be assembled next year in the brand new Texas Toyota truck plant next year. Watch your ass American vehicle manufacturers!!!



Will look very similar to these photos
 

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The nice thing about that is that since it will be built in Texas, even us rednecks can't complain about it being "jap-crap."

Honestly though, I don't care about a Toyota full-size. I will keep my Fords for doing work. My new FJ, though... that one will get some love for sure!
 
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