TRACK EATER

4WDers take note – This is how you build the ultimate track- eating tough tourer!

All of us dream of building our trucks up to be able to do it all. You want your 4WD to take you on that epic trip, but also be able to hold its own on the local tracks. NSW North Coast local Anthony Bevan got his hands on a mint one owner Series three GU Patrol back in 2012, and hasn’t looked back.

“I previously had a short wheelbase MQ Patrol and a short wheelbase GQ TB42 Patrol,” explains Anthony. “I went for the GU because I wanted a diesel and I also wanted a wagon. I was finding the short wheelbase wasn’t big enough to bring the family on trips. She was already twin locked when I bought her, but one of the best bits was that it was a one owner 4WD, so I couldn’t go past it.”

The end result is a super tough all-rounder that will be just as good on a trip up the Cape as it would on Daniels Point Road – Let’s check it out!


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TOURING SET UP
  • Drifta rear drawer system
  • Rear mounted 45L stainless steel water tank
  • Custom rear twin wheel carrier

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The back of this GU would make any red-blooded 4WDer weak at the knees. Before even opening the rear barn doors, you notice the mint rear bar and twin wheel carriers. “The rear bar was built by Shane at Great Lakes Panel and Paint,” comments Anthony. “It’s awesome for protecting the truck without compromising departure angles. In the rear of the GU I have a drawer system built by Drifta. It has a slide out drawer and a ‘Drifta Car Back’ kitchen that can be removed from the vehicle completely and setup in seconds. It’s fantastic for camping and I can store all my cooking gear in the one place.”

Q: WHY DID YOU GO FOR THE REAR DRAWER SYSTEM SETUP THAT YOU HAVE?

A: I was looking at a drawer system and one of my mates had one of the Drifta drawer setups in their 4WD. A customer of theirs had a system built for their vehicle and then changed their mind, so I jumped on it. It’s a bit smaller than the rear of the GU, which works well because I have installed a water tank in the spare space between the seats and the drawers.

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SUSPENSION, WHEELS & TYRES
  • 4in flexi coil suspension lift
  • 6in Armada Extreme remote reservoir shocks
  • Superior Engineering radius arms and superflex swaybar

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When it came time to setup the big GU’s suspension, Anthony wanted it to be versatile. “I went for the four inch lift because I also like tackling harder stuff like Coffs Harbour, the Watagans and some of the local tough tracks around Forster,” comments Anthony. “I wanted a setup that was capable of doing tough tracks, but was still practical for bigger trips away towing the camper trailer. I’m not too worried about fuel consumption, so the four inch lift was the perfect combination between practical and capable.”

Q: WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO BLOKES WANTING TO DO A SIMILAR BUILD?

A: Definitely talk to the guys that have done it before. They have the experience and knowledge to help you out. Also make sure you set it up suited to what you want to use the 4WD for. Don’t think you need a big turbo and big horsepower just because… Power is good, but if you’re not using it all the time, you’re wasting your money.

Q: HAVE YOU HAD ANY ISSUES IN  RELIABILITY OR OVERHEATING SINCE INCREASING THE POWER OUTPUT?

A: No the setup has been perfect with the upgraded radiator and cooler. It does climb slightly when I push it up hills hard, but jumps straight back down afterwards. I also cracked open the viscous hub and put some hub oil out of an 80 Series Cruiser in there so it activates better and I have had no issues.

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PERFORMANCE MODS
  • TD05 16G Turbo
  • Cross Country 4×4 top mount intercooler
  • Upgraded two core aluminium radiator

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More often than not, you see blokes running around with the legendary TD42 motor squeezing big amounts of power out of them. While that’s all good, in the long run and for touring it’s not the most economical, and it can mess around with reliability if not done properly. Knowing the TD42 is a bulletproof motor if setup correctly, Anthony set about some modest increases in power without sacrificing the legendary tractor like reliability of the 4.2L diesel. “I added a 16G TD05 turbo for a little bit more power,” says Anthony. “TD42s are known for getting hot when you wind the power up so I also added the larger radiator. The top mount intercooler was on with the stock HT18 turbo and it held its own, but it is even better in handling EGTs with the 16G turbo.

When they did the tune they discovered the factory 11mm injector pump was starting the downhill trek, so I will be looking into a larger 12mm boost compensated pump down the line. With all said and done she is running 150kw at 3200 RPM and about 440Nm.” For the most part, increasing in power will affect fuel consumption. Because Anthony hasn’t gone chasing insane power, he is still getting good numbers with fuel. “On an average day, I am getting around 13-14L/100km with the 35in tyres and 3.9 diff gears”

RUNDOWN:

VEHICLE: 2003 GU Nissan Patrol
ENGINE: 4.2L inline six cylinder turbo intercooled diesel
GEARBOX: Five– speed manual
4WD ACTIVATION: Manual locking hubs
SUSPENSION: Four inch Flexi coils with six inch Armada Extreme remote reservoir shocks
WHEELS AND TYRES: 315/75/R16 Toyo Open Country M/T
THANKS: “I would like to thank Brian and the boys at L&C Mugridge Forster for all the mechanical work and Shane at Great Lakes Panel and Paint for all the barwork.”

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