Once upon a time, Toyota made a vehicle that preceded the 4Runner — we’ll sidestep the obvious puns of “3Runner” and “4Walker” — called the Toyota Trekker. It was a run of 4×4 Toyota truck conversions built with Winnebago in the early 1980s, limited to about 1,500 units. Toyota eventually put a similar idea into production as the 4Runner (or Hilux Surf in other markets) in 1984.
Not surprisingly, the rarity of those Trekkers means they can command a pretty penny on the used market. Vanguard Motor Sales is currently selling a rather pristine-looking yellow 1981 Toyota Trekker with fewer than 29,000 miles. It comes packing Toyota’s bulletproof 22R engine — which has barely been broken in at that odometer reading — and a five-speed manual transmission.
Vintage Toyota off-roader enthusiasts are rabid, and Stranger Things-era 1980s style is en vogue right now — so if you suspected this obscure gem where those two trendlines meet wouldn’t come cheap, you’d be correct. The asking price is $49,900 — which is more than the cost of a brand new Toyota 4Runner Venture Special Edition.
That said, if you consider that a 1985 Toyota Pickup with 130,000 miles that merely looked like the one in Back to the Future went for $58,000, and that someone just paid $80,000 for a used 1989 Toyota FJ62 Land Cruiser…maybe this Trekker is a relative bargain? At the very least, you could probably flip it for a couple grand in profit on Bring a Trailer.
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