POWER TO BURN

There’s no two ways about it, when you work a field you’re passionate about, you tend to get pretty darn good at your 9-5. When your 9-5 involves injecting serious horsepower in to 4WDs, well, you can guess where we’re going with this…

Pete Travers from Diesel Fit Toowoomba spends his days making big, heavy 4WDs haul arse – simple as that. “We service and tune some pretty serious horsepower setups, 4WDs pushing well over 200kw at the wheels,” explains Pete. “When it came time to pick up a 4WD for our family, I went with something I knew, and could tune to make some great power.” Pete chose Toyota’s tough 76 Series wagon, for its ability to effortlessly tow the family camper and still carry out all the weekday duties while still being an extremely capable weekend warrior and tourer.

“Between myself and my dad, there’s over 30 years of diesel tuning experience floating around the workshop” says Pete. “So when it came time to start building the Cruiser, I wanted to really push the horsepower envelope without affecting reliability and daily driving ability – I feel we definitely succeeded on that!” If you want to see what’s possible without tearing your engine to bits and spending trillions in expensive aftermarket engine parts, then just check this thing out – you’ll never look at your 70 Series’ engine the same again!

INTERIOR & TOURING GEAR
  • Drifta twin drawer system
  • MSA drop fridge slide
  • Engel 40L fridge
  • HEMA HN7 off-road GPS
  • Redarc brake controller
  • Autometer Cobalt gauges – Boost, EGT
  • Alpine replacement door speakers

With nearly double the factory horsepower under the bonnet, Pete needs quick visual access to engine data and has installed two Autometer gauges in the A-pillar, which read out boost pressure and exhaust gas temps. “With the tune, we’re hard pressed to bring the EGTs over 500 degrees, but it’s good to have the gauges there for peace of mind,” says Pete. Taking care of rear storage is a Drifta twin drawer system which makes packing and organising a family’s worth of camping gear a breeze.

EXTERIOR
  • ARB steel bulbar
  • Kaymar steel rear bar w/single swing away tyre carrier
  • Runva 12,000lb winch
  • ARB steel full length roof rack
  • 6 x X-Ray HID driving lights

There wasn’t much debate when setting up the barwork side of the 79 – it was top shelf or nothing. Kaymar looks after rear end protection, while an ARB steel, colour-coded bulbar hangs on to the Runva 12,000lb winch and two of the six X-Ray HID driving lights. An ARB steel roof rack holds a set of MAXTRAX and other bulky camping gear.

SUSPENSION, WHEELS & TYRES
  • 4in Superior Engineering raised springs
  • AmadaXtreme remote reservoir shocks
  • Superior Engineering Superflex radius arms
  • Superior Engineering steering rod and steering dampener
  • Superior Engineering drag link
  • 16x10in Allied Savvana alloy rims
  • 315/75R16 Mickey Thompson Baja Claws

It’s no secret that a factory 70 Series flexes about as well as an ironing board, but luckily there are plenty of companies out there dedicated to getting those stiff paws moving. “The Superior Engineering radius arms have given the front end a whole new lease on life and let it really flex into ruts with the best of ‘em,” says Pete. “The AmadaXtreme shocks compliment the rest of the setup perfectly and can absorb heat incredibly. On a recent trip to the Cape, after hours of hellish corrugations, the shocks were still cool to the touch.”

ENGINE & DRIVELINE

Unichip with 5 in-dash selectable maps tuned by Diesel Fit Toowoomba
Factory intercooler and turbocharger retained for reliability
3in mild steel exhaust system – lowered EGTs over 50 degrees
Twin factory lockers
Direct Clutch Services heavy duty clutch

HOW MUCH POWER CAN YOU GAIN?

Stock 76 Series
Power at the wheels: 110.8Kw  2900rpm
Torque at the wheels: 380Nm  2800rpm

Diesel Fit 76 Series
Power at the wheels: 190.3Kw  3200rpm
TORQUE: 650Nm  2450rpm

“The idea really was to retain ultimate factory reliability while tuning the 76, yet also push the envelope on what level of power was possible with little more than the Unichip, tune and exhaust,” explains Pete. “With modern CRD vehicles, they’re able to be tuned much more efficiently and safely than the older style diesel motors – basically we’ve got stacks more parameters to work with. By being able to see the whole picture, we can raise fuel and boost levels to make big power, yet all the while ensuring that air/fuel ratios are kept in check, rather than simply backyard tuning based of the EGTs.”

[blockquote cite=”” type=”center”]”We achieved an extra 90kw at the wheels, simply with a tune and exhaust”[/blockquote]

What Diesel Fit have achieved here is nothing short of extraordinary – 190.3Kw and 650Nm at the wheels, with an essentially stock motor! “Our emphasis is always geared first towards making sure the engine is safely tuned, so the 76 is quite happy at these power levels day in and day out,” says Pete. “At the end of the day we achieved an extra 90kw at the wheels, simply with a tune and exhaust – you can’t argue that.”

UNICHIP SELECTABLE ECU MAPS

From the dash, Pete is able to select from five different maps for different driving situations using the Unichip 5-tune map selector.

FULL POWER – Opens the power tap right up
TOWING – Power is optimised for towing
REDUCED POWER – For slippery, low traction surfaces to minimise wheel spin
FACTORY TUNE – Self-explanatory
VALET MODE – Limits the revs and power so the local tyre fitter can’t help you wear out those rear tyres!

RUNDOWN

VEHICLE: 2014 Land Cruiser 76 Series.
ENGINE: 1VD-FTE, 4.5L turbo diesel V8.
GEARBOX: 5-Speed manual.
4WD ACTIVATION: Stationary, with manual locking hubs.
SUSPENSION: 4in Superior Engineering coils and AmadaXtreme remote reservoir shocks.
WHEELS AND TYRES: 16×10 Allied Savvana rims and 315/75R16 Mickey Thompson Baja Claws.

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