The journey begins…

I dedicated this restoration journal to my latest victim, A 1981 Toyota Land cruiser BJ44V-KCY. This specific model was only sold for a period of 2 years, and only for the Japanese Domestic Market. (JDM). The most interesting part about this Land cruiser is its wheelbase, its slightly longer than the common FJ/BJ40 series sold worldwide, but shorter than the famous Long wheel based BJ45/FJ45/HJ47, also known as “Troopy”.

The first time I looked this car into its eyes, I knew that this was something for me… As an Icon of Industrial design, this car will never loose its charm, beauty and strength. Build for hard work, based on the idea that form follows function. The Japanese designers looked very carefully to the American Jeeps, and managed to add an extra flair to their final design…

As an industrial designer, a fan of classic Japanese design, and someone who likes to make things beautiful, I knew this was my new destiny: Restoring a timeless piece of Design.

A friend of mine, who owns a business in Japanese motorcycle parts, imported this car from Japan. His first intention was to drive the car himself, but after a while he realized that he had no time for a vehicle like this. Besides that, he already drives an Toyota FJ Cruiser :), So to make a long story short, I took my change and bought the car.

And here it is, the moment I fell in love:


9 responses to “The journey begins…

  • mahen kirinde

    it was great to see your BJ44, only after seeing the pics i realised i have a similar vehicle, but did not know what the modal was,
    have you started the project? i live and work in Vienna, but the vehicle is in Sri Lanka where i come from. every winter time im in SL attending to the restoration. thank you very much for sharing your passion , and interesting information.
    mahen kirinde

    Vienna Austria

    • folkertbj44

      Hi Mahen,

      It sounds like you only visited the first post???… I started restoring in December 2010, by now the Land cruiser is almost finished, check my last posts.. just go to the homepage :
      best, folkert

  • mahen kirinde

    Hi Folkert, im going through your project, its done so well with a lot of great , practical ideas, clearly explained wish i saw the article before, will write soon after going through your all your post. by the way great photos!!!


    Thankfulness to my father who informed me regarding this website, this web site is
    genuinely amazing.

  • Robert Calladine

    Hi Folkert!
    I have visited your site many times, gaining inspiration for my own restoration. I’ve owned a 1983 BJ46, which was my daily driving car since I bought it in 2006. I bought it in New Zealand and shipped it home to Australia, but in 2009 I moved to Dubai and the old girl was parked in a shed. Two months ago I had her shipped to Dubai and have started the disassembly process. Rust, rust and more rust!

    Parts sourcing is my biggest challenge, as you will already. Two things I have not been able to source are the window channels, which you found in Australia… Can you reveal your source? And replacement weatherstrips for the small windows to the rear of the sliding ones.

    Any ideas? Would love to send some pics your way if you’re interested.


  • Daniel Polom

    Hello Folkert,

    I found your website and it is fantastic! I want announce as of today I am the proud new owner of a 1981 BJ44 L-package. The truck appears to be in time-warp condition as it is a one owner truck with 44000km! It will be about two months before it arrives in here in the USA. I would love to be able to contact you regarding your expertise. The truck comes with full documentation so when I receive paperwork and there is anything of interest I will be happy to share.

    Atlanta GA

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