Irish Toyota Land Cruiser clocks up 400,000 miles

Most company cars will have been hauled through the auction lot by the time they hit the 100,000-mile mark.

But one County Dublin fleet vehicle is still going strong with almost four times that amount of motoring behind it.

Peter Hanifin’s 2007 Toyota Land Cruiser GX has been owned by his employer Thorntons Recycling since new, and in the past 10 years has clocked up more than 640,000km (397,678 miles).

The three-door 4×4 fell into Mr Hanifan’s hands in 2008 after it had racked up 80,000km with company director Paul Thornton.

A Land Cruiser

© James Andrews

Since then it’s averaged about 60,000km/year.

Most of that has been thundering around the Irish countryside in his capacity as a sales account manager.

But he’s also put in a few long-haul drives to England to compete for Ireland in clay pigeon shooting competitions.

The Land Cruiser has done a fair amount of towing in its time, too.

See also: Veteran Renault tractor hits 21,000 hours

But despite the workload it has had no major parts replaced.

Paul Hanifan (left) with Thorntons Recycling's Mark Conroy (right)

Paul Hanifan (left) with Thorntons Recycling’s Mark Conroy (right) © James Andrews

The 3-litre four-cylinder engine is completely original and has had nothing other than regular servicing to keep it that way.

This is carried out by the firm’s in-house workshop and includes an oil change every 10,000km as well as a timing belt every 80,000km.

The six-speed gearbox is also untouched, as is the clutch.

However, that could be partly due to the fact Mr Hanifan rarely uses it to change gear.

“I know the truck that well that I can shift it up the box without touching the clutch pedal – I just get the revs and timing right and it slips in a treat,” he says.

The exhaust is also original, but he did have to replace the catalytic converter after it was stolen while parked outside a hotel.

The Land Cruiser's engine bay

© James Andrews

Other replacement parts have been limited to the usual wear-and-tear items such as a starter motor, alternator, brake parts and a couple of seized calipers.

He goes through a set of tyres every 14 to 15 months, which considering the mileage is pretty good going. “I always get the same Michelin tyres as they last so well – I get the tracking checked every time they’re changed and the tread always wears evenly,” says Mr Hanifan.

Performance is also well up there (if not better) than the latest models.

“It’s got a huge amount of torque and pulls hard in all gears,” he says. “Virtually no smoke comes out of the back either.”

Having a sixth gear also makes a big difference to fuel economy, with him averaging 9.5km/litre (about 27mpg).

The interior of the Land Cruiser

© James Andrews

“I’ve driven a couple of the five-speed versions and they seem to drink the diesel a hell of a lot faster.”

Other running costs include road tax of €336/year (£305/year) and insurance, which is covered by the company’s fleet policy.

The beige bodywork has also had very little attention, with no rust breaking through.

The inside of the Land Cruiser is filled with clothes and belongings

© James Andrews

However, it did have to have a new bumper, front wing and headlight after he got too closely acquainted with a stone wall earlier this year.

As the truck is commercial spec, creature comforts are few and far between. There’s no air-con meaning it is like “sitting in a tin can” on a hot day and there’s just a basic radio for entertainment. However, it has had a Parrot hands-free system retrofitted.

Despite the mileage, Mr Hanifin has no desire to change the truck.

“I love that thing and if anything happened to it I’d try my best to get it back on the road,” he says.

“In fact, I’ve got a bet running with the guys in the workshop that I’ll get it to 1m km.”

Peter Hanifin’s Toyota Land Cruiser GX

  • Year 2007
  • Engine 3-litre Toyota four-cylinder D4D
  • Transmission Six-speed manual with high-low transfer box
  • Mileage 640,000km (397,678 miles)

Thorntons recycling

Thorntons Recycling is a family firm with seven depots in the Dublin area.

It specialises in most aspects of waste management from household bin collections and liquid waste to commercial compost production.

Much of the firm’s 12,000t annual compost output ends up on agricultural land and is spread using a Terragator 9105 or one of its trailed Tebbe or Bergmann spreaders.

In total, Thorntons runs 18 Toyota Land Cruisers ranging from 1985 to 2014.

Other high-milers

Here are a few of the other mile-munching motors we’ve featured in the past:

David Wootton’s year 2000 Toyota Hilux – 387,0000 miles

David Wootton with his Toyoya Hilux

David Wootton with his Toyoya Hilux

Anthony Simpson’s 1996 Toyota Land Cruiser Amazon 80-series – 419,000 miles

Anthony Simpson and his Toyota Land Cruiser

Anthony Simpson and his Toyota Land Cruiser

Andy Gay’s 1997 Isuzu Trooper – 490,000 miles

Andy Gay and his Isuzu Trooper

Andy Gay and his Isuzu Trooper

Show us yours…

If you’ve got a high-mileage 4×4 that’s given you sterling service and is still on its original engine, we’d like to hear from you.

The trucks above are clearly tough to beat, so we’d be interested to see vehicles with 300,000 miles or more on the clock. Similarly, if you’ve got a high-houred agricultural vehicle we’d love to hear about that too.

If you’d like to be featured email a few details to fwmachinery@rbi.co.uk

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