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The Elusive Delta Mini Cruiser

Updated: Mar 31, 2020

Tucked away outside Nashville TN is this rare 1982 Delta Mini Cruiser. (VIN RJ2B0006321) The Mini Cruiser is a seldom seen oddity, especially in the USA.

The Mini Cruiser strongly resembles a smaller scale FJ40. Engineered and built using many Toyota components by Philippines based Delta Motors, the company was primarily known as Toyota's local builder of choice, and manufactured several different models like the Crown, Starlet, Corona, Cressida and others between 1962 and 1984 when its politically powerful owner fell out of favor with the Marcos government.

Originally developed as the M-1777 for use in the Philippine Army, civilian models were exported to South America, Italy and parts of the Middle East.

This Mini Cruiser was restored in 2016 and appears to be in excellent condition as the  photos show. Cream white over blue-gray steelies looks fantastic, and broad shouldered 16″ M/T tires are perfectly chosen here. Note the coolMini Cruiserscript badges affixed to the front aprons.

The interior is finished in very well done looking utility orange, which if described without attached photos would sound like an odd match for the exterior colors, but in practice actually works quite nicely. Everything looks factory fresh, and it seems safe to assume that very few miles have been added since restoration was completed. All gauges are shown lit up in a very Toyota shade of green, and the canvas top with roll-up windows looks to be a new, good quality item. Check out the fold-down windshield, too.

Up front sits a Toyota 12R 1.6 liter gasoline four-cylinder, which in this case is actually a 12R-M as used to specifically identify engines built by Delta. Output should be on the order of 90 HP, and the seller says that the motor as well as the transmission and differentials have been overhauled. This truck is not on the Inventory Page so call me at 515 864 1275 or email

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