To the average motorist, ‘80s-era Toyota Land Cruisers may not appear to be anything all that special, not looking all that different from other vintage SUVs from that period. As the years go by, however, it’s become abundantly clear that Toyota’s ‘80s-era trucks have managed to stand the test of time unlike almost anything else on the road — or trails — as retro Land Cruisers boast both a design and level of build quality that enables them to offer decades and decades of dependable service so long as they receive basic maintenance.
While the rugged build quality of old Land Cruisers helps keep them on the road, this wasn’t good enough for FJ enthusiast Brian Corsetti, who wished to better preserve these vehicles. So, in 2019, Brian founded Corsetti Cruisers, a Gardena, California-based shop that specializes in restoring and restomodding vintage Toyota Land Cruisers. Spurred on by Brian’s childhood love for the Toyota model’s FJ60 generation, Corsetti Cruisers now offers complete frame-off restoration services for a myriad of Land Cruiser variants from across a plethora of eras including the FJ40, FJ60, FJ62, and FZJ80. Powered by the buyer’s choice of either an LS3 or LSA engine mated to either an automatic or manual transmission, these FJ restorations bolster performance and creature comforts — with the cabins gaining upgraded stereo systems and heated and cooled M5 seats — while retaining their original factory appearance and character.
More recently, the Southern California shop has also expanded its services to include churning out restomodded International Harvester Scout 800 and Scout 2 builds using donors from between 1968 and 1980. Merged with a modern Jeep Rubicon chassis, these more advanced International Harvester builds benefit from a full frame-off restoration, as well as four-link suspension, Dana 44 axles, optional four-wheel-steering, and the choice of either an LS3, LSA, Hellcat, or Hellephant crate engine. Additionally, the company has also stated that it plans on soon starting to offer restomodded Land Cruisers and Scouts with an available fully-electric powertrain. Meticulously crafted by an expert team, the highly-involved build process required to bring these restomodded vehicles to life is described by Corsetti as being compared to building a family heirloom — a statement that no doubt speaks volumes about the level of attention to detail that goes into each project and the world-class results that this level of detail allows for.
Corsetti Cruisers is currently accepting commissions for future builds, with more information on pricing, options, and build times available by request on the outfit’s website.