There’s been this massive and insane run on old Toyota Land Cruisers in the past few years. Recently there have been sales of FJ40s at auction for insane amounts, which has been wild to see. As someone who has lurked in the FJ vintage market for the past five years, I can’t believe how high things have gone for a vehicle that at one time was a totally unimportant. And while I haven’t pulled the trigger on an old FJ (yet), I have become a professional online hunter of trucks I will never buy or own. Jonathan Ward from ICON probably wants to kill me at this point because I ask him his opinion on some new random classified just about everyday, or at least once a week. He probably knows I am not going to buy (unless just the right thing came along), but entertains me nonetheless. But sometimes the thrill of the chase is almost good enough.
During one my many searches I would come across an outfit in Tampa called Volcan 4×4 (which may or may not have taken inspiration from ICON), who sells some very nicely reconfigured FJs and other assorted vintage off-roaders. Most of the stock originated in Central and South America only to be bought, shipped and overhauled in the U.S. by Volcan in Florida.
Most of what the company sells are soft top FJs, but you will catch an odd Land Rover Series II or even a super random Nissan Patrol from time to time. Well maybe the Patrol isn’t random to me, but I certainly don’t see them around much and when this 1967 truck popped up on Volcan’s Facebook, I was certainly intrigued.
Just like the FJ, the Patrol was Nissan’s answer to the Willy’s Jeep. The styling of the earliest models of the Patrol certainly resemble a Willy’s, and to some degree look a bit more interesting – or maybe just a bit more oddball. As you can see by this ’67 pictured, around the second gen of these guys in the mid-sixties the trucks had morphed into a sort of handsome Land Rover-Jeep hybrid looking things. The real allure here (and Volcan definitely does a great job with the aesthetics by the way) is the simplicity that these vintage off-road vehicles offer. They just don’t ever seem to want to go out of style or fall out of favor, which is likely why people are going ape shit for them at auction. Though, all that doesn’t really matter if you are a professional vintage off road lurker like me.