My father and his Toyota Landcruiser in 2009.
In 1949 Australia began a great hydro-electric project called the Snowy Mountains Hydro Electric Scheme. It needed tough all terrain vehicles for its hundreds of workers and engineers to get in and out. Initially they used Landrovers and Dodges, but neither company could reliably supply the vehicles needed, and the vehicles themselves didn't always cope with the terrain. In 1959 one of the engineering companies involved approached Toyota. This was quite a controversial thing to do at the time as there was a lot of anti-Japanese prejudice in Australia due to the treatment of Australian and other Commonwealth prisoners of war by Japan in the Second World War. But Japan was very keen to enter the Australian market and Toyota's Landcruiser was just the vehicle to make the breakthrough for them. Within 12 months the Cruiser as it was generally referred to had become a legend, with a reputation for total reliability in even the roughest most isolated terrain. Toyota had cracked it, and soon there was hardly a farmer, mining engineer, geologist or outback traveller who didn't own one. Nowadays tour operators, the police, fire brigade and the army all use Cruisers, as well as city dwellers who never go off-road at all.