There are three things that will survive a Nuclear Fallout, Zombie Apocalypse, Electromagnetic Pulse, or an Alien Invasion. Twinkies, Cockroaches, and Toyota Trucks. The Tacoma, the Tundra, and the Land Cruiser are the most surefire way to get through any of those scenarios. (Maybe pack an extra pair of underwear too)
Toyotas, designed in Japan, and built all over the world are notorious for having the ability to run you into the ground before you run it into the ground. The person behind the screen, writing this article had a 2000 Toyota Land Cruiser for his first car and drove it harder than his parents should ever know about and unfortunately sold it last summer for $5,000 with 285,000 miles. That’s 95 times across the United States, roughly 4000 hours or 166 days of driving time. In the grand scheme of real Toyotas, sorry Prius, 285,000 miles isn’t even that wild. Check the used car market, there are Land Cruisers and other Toyota Trucks with tons of miles selling for some serious $$$.
Okay, enough blabbing, let’s get down to it. Toyota Trucks are bulletproof. Unfortunately, I couldn’t track down a Hilux to feature in this piece, but check out Youtuber Whistlin’ Diesel and his 4-episode series on how “indestructible” the Hilux can be in a variety of scenarios. (SPOILER: very indestructible, but that man eventually put it through a ringer that no mechanical thing could ever survive.)
Welcome back, let's talk Toyota Tacoma
So, DECKED customers are suckers for Tacomas, especially those owners that like to get off road. And you are straight up wrong if you don’t have a soft spot for siiiick Tacomas. There are some pretty sweet modifications from a wild variety of aftermarket manufacturers to help you dial your Tacoma build up to 11.
We reached out to Scott (@tacomamountain_ut), an A1 DECKED customer with a legit Toyota Tacoma build to hear about some of his upgrades. He cracked us up when he wrote he had too many modifications to list and asked if he could just pick a few of his favorites, which ended up being the suspension, armor, and storage capacities.
Here are Scott's favorite modifications:
- Fox coilovers with Icon Rxt leafs 700lb Icon coils
- 3 skid plate system by CBI
- Rock sliders and a front hybrid bumper from C4 fabrication
- Leitner Bed Rack
- CVT roof top tent
- DECKED Drawer System
- Heretic Studio Lights
“The DECKED system has helped a ton having the items I use the most close and easy to access. Always hated items rolling around in the bed and now I have them secured. The locking and weatherproof draws makes this system rad!”
The Tacoma is great, it’s small and can get you in hard to fit places, whether you’re in the backwoods of South Carolina, Moab, or northern California. Because the Tacoma is on the smaller end of trucks and doesn’t have storage space that a larger truck might have, the DECKED Drawer System provides a very efficient solution.
Not much on this Tacoma went untouched, it’s badass if we do say so ourselves. The factory build quality on Toyota trucks sets them up well for off-roading and the modifications that Scott added are equivalent to pouring gasoline on a fire.
"Little Trucks Are Cool, But Sometimes Size Matters" - Toyota Tundra
Bigger than the Tacoma, packing the i-Force 5.7L V8, the Toyota Tundra can put in some WORK. The Tundra, especially in the Off-Road and TRD Pro guises, is extremely off-road capable from the factory. The Tundra has an optional 38 gallon fuel tank, an accessory that could come into play big time if you’re looking to get way off the grid. With an available 10,200lb towing capacity and a 1,730lb payload, the Tundra has plenty of space for your toys. (Fun fact: DECKED’s payload capacity is greater than the Tundra).
In many scenarios, most people wouldn’t even need to modify these trucks. But, if you’re looking to stand out on the street and boost the usability of your rig on the road less traveled, there are some modifications that can be made.
If you don’t know how these writeups go, this is the part where we introduce a DECKED customer who does a great job of dialing up their truck build. This time around we reached out to Brandon, a guy with a seriously legit Tundra. If you want to see more content on his ever developing truck check his ‘gram (@moonlander_pro).
We slid into his DMs and he let us know how to do a Tundra right:
“I started my build off with the Leitner ACS rack. The reason I got that first is, because I used to drive a 4Runner and I already had my CVT tents. Directly afterwards I got the DECKED System because I knew that was going to be so helpful! It is easily the most helpful, thought-out design that I added to my truck. Love it! Then I added some rock sliders by CaliRaised because I got out on some rugged adventures with my boys. I also went with their ditch lights, so I can see a little bit better on and off the trails. Needed some chase lights so I added some Rigid 3” cubes to the rear.”
People, you heard it here, and you’ll hear it again, when it comes to truck modifications, more is not always better.
That is DECKED in a nutshell: you get one piece of equipment that can just about do it all. Yeah, it’s just two drawers that go in the back of your truck, but YES you can fit your camping gear in it, YES you can organize your work tools, YES you can park your snowmobile and ATV on top of the system, and YES you can ice down some beers in the drawers for your tailgate. Simple but mighty.
“Short and sweet. I chose the Tundra over all the other trucks on the market, because they simply make the best trucks from the Sequoia all the way to the Taco! Fact!”
The Truck You Didn't Know You Needed (or existed): Land Cruiser 70 series
Folks, we’ve reached the end of a great era in the United States, the era of the Land Cruiser. Toyota will no longer be selling the SUV that many revered as indestructible and the ultimate off-road family hauler. A sad day for sure, but that means we must start getting creative. In order to stand out from the moms and 75-year-old men wearing khakis at the golf course is to import a Land Cruiser 70 Series truck. Woah.
While importing a vehicle Is not a walk in the park, Huckberry's guide can set you in the right direction. If, somehow, someway, you ARE able to get a 70 series Land Cruiser truck in the US of A, we have a list of modifications for you to really dial in the most badass, durable, unique truck out there. We reached out to DECKED customer, Jarred (@the_dusty_gringo , @junglecruiser) to see how he turned his Land Cruiser up to 11.
“I live in Escamequita, Nicaragua. The roads are mostly dirt/gravel and there are also a number of beaches hidden in the jungle that are only accessed via jungle tracks or on foot or horseback. I also spend a lot of time on these remote beaches cleaning up trash that has been deposited by the ocean and also to explore the coastline. The surf on the Pacific Coast of Nicaragua is world class, so it's great to find hidden waves surrounded by only jungle.”
A lot of people in the United States overland for fun and on the weekends, but from what it sounds like, Jarred is overlands on his everyday commute. These are the modifications he has added to his Land Cruiser 70 Series Truck to make his life easier:
Suspension - Old Man Emu Nitrocharger Sport including 2inch lift
Tire Carrier: RIGd Ultraswing Multi Fit
Bed Rack Storage: 2x Roam 95L Rugged Case
Water Storage: 2x Scepter 5 Gallon Military Water Cans
Shower: Innhom Portable Outdoor Shower
Recovery Jack: Hi Lift PJ Harrah Signature Edition
Rear Lighting: KC Hilites 2 inch C Series
Roof Rack: ARB Base Rack
Roof Rack Lighting: ARB Base Rack Light Bar
Front Bumper: Original Toyota Bumper with added ARB LX470 Sahara Tube
Winch: OEM Toyota
Spotlights: OK4WD IPF900XS Driving Lights
Air Compressor: ARB
Awning: Roam 5' awning
“The DECKED System allowed me to have locked storage as well as to have the ability to carry heavy items on top. The drawers do a great job in keeping out dust kicked up from the dirt roads as well as the heavy downpours of rain that we get during the rainy season. I have a D-Box and a Crossbox in one drawer and this helps to organise my tools. At the moment my Drawerganizer is full of Guanacaste tree seeds that my daughters collected which will be planted along the river on my property. My other drawer is used for a beach umbrella, machete and recovery gear but it could equally be used to store gear for a wing foil mission to the Caribbean Coast!”
It seems like Nicaragua is the place where DECKED should do some future product testing. Sounds like Jarred gets hit with about everything except snow. It makes us proud to know that our Drawer system is able to take such a beating but still perform flawlessly and continue to serve Jarred in his adventurous lifestyle.
This truck, living in the jungle, surfing untouched waves kind of has us wanting to take an extended vacation.