The FJ55V was the successor to the FJ45V, and was a full model change bearing little in common with its predecessor. Everything on the chassis except of the axel was completely redesigned. When the frame evolved from the 20-series to the 40-series the number of fully enclosed box cross-section members increased in the side frame, but in the FJ55V all of the remaining open-ended members were replaced with fully enclosed members. Moreover, the member assembly method was changed from riveting to welding.
As a result on the FJ55V frame the wheelbase was extended by 50mm, lengthening the rear overhang, and for improved productivity assembly was divided into 3 phases. Ordinarily this kind of reinforcement would be expected to add to the vehicle weight, however even while increasing the bending strength by 20% Toyota managed to actually reduce the vehicle weight by over 10kg. The FJ55V model also had a different length in the front of the frame depending on whether or not a winch was to be installed, a station wagon design that was fully ready for the new era.
FJ55V engine was essentially the same F-type engine as the FJ45V that had been used in the 40-series, however there were significant improvements made particularly in the cylinder heads. The reason for this was to raise the rpm level at which the engine produced its maximum output, aiming at better performance in high speed driving, and also improvements were made to reduce emissions.
On the new cylinder heads of the F-type engine the position of the bolt-holes that fixed the heads to the blocks was the same, but the shape of the heads was completely different. The combustion chamber had the same wedge shape, but the angles of the intake and exhaust valves were both fixed at 6-degrees, the shape and numbers of the rocker arms were modified, and the entire unit was made lighter. A passenger car use compact 4-cylinder 2R-type gasoline engine camshaft was added to improve intake efficiency at high rpm levels.
With the FJ56V the engine evolved from the F-type to the 2F-type, with most of the changes centering on the specs for the piston displacement and the carburetor. The cylinder bore was increased by 4mm to gain more piston displacement, and improvements were made to part of the fuel delivery system, resulting in a power boost of 10PS.
The instrument panel gained a resinous pad to protect passengers in the event of a collision. The meters were made more reliable with print layout in the wiring, the water temperature gauge used a thermistor, and the meters were made more durable.
The FJ55V had a bench-type seat in the front that could hold 3 people, but on the FJ56V you could chose a separate seat type. One feature of this series was that it had a design more like a passenger car, but at the same time was built even stronger.
The rear gate came in two types, either a fold down type or one that opened out from the center. The rear gate could only be opened after you lowered the gate window electronically, and this could be done by remote control from the driver's seat.
The second seat was possible to fold down forward. The 55-type was designed very much with a passenger car in mind, however it sacrificed none of the Land Cruiser performance. The luggage room was flat, and from the floor to the seatbacks was all made of steel.