To think that Toyota is only replacing the comfort-oriented Land Cruiser after 13 years of the ongoing model shows how good it was in the market. The nameplate however is 70 years old, catering for different kinds of variants that existed with that name such as bakkies, SUVs and two-door SUVs. All combined have sold 10.4 million units in 170 countries and regions, serving as one of the best-selling models by the Japanese carmaker. The models stood strong in the market all these years because of the robustness, safety and most importantly the reliability that came with the package. Customers knew very well that they were buying into years of “not being let down” because these things can go on forever.
Those who purchase a Land Cruiser are looking for a vehicle that will go anywhere and not break a sweat while at the job. That’s why organizations in the humanitarian aid department buy it, including rescue teams and people in the farming business, it really is good for all sorts of applications. A banger when off-roading and still a good companion on tar road as well. For the new 300 Series, the strong points such as the diff system, ladder frame chassis and suspension have been well improved and it inherits all the Land Cruiser’s characteristics with an addition of modern technologies. New look aside because it is still recognizable in this stature.
Modern times demand the use of new platforms and for the 300 Series they are using a GA-F platform comprising of a body-on-frame structure, same as the old one, but based on the TNGA (Toyota New Global Architecture) and that is a manner of not erasing most of its qualities. With the use of this platform, the overall weight has reduced by 200 kilograms over its predecessor and dictates a lower center of gravity and an improved suspension infrastructure. All of these aspects are clearly directed towards the refinement of the components that make it a Land Cruiser in that sense.
They promise an easy-to-drive experience and convenience in all-terrain conditions with the aid of features such as the E-KDSS (Electronic Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System), Multi-Terrain Monitor & Select which automatically change the driving modes according to the road conditions and adopts the capabilities effectively.
Not much can be said about the exterior look only for the fact that it is similar to the facelifted 200 Series but with a slimmer headlight design, big chrome grille, huge creases on the hood, rear taillights redesign, and you cannot even have a sense of doubt to see that this is not a Land Cruiser. A GR Sportline package will be offered as well if ever the standard look doesn’t move you.
There’s a new engine with two less cylinders departing from the conventional V8 engine and two turbos for good measure. In full, it is a 3.5-litre twin-turbocharged V6 engine mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission that’s available in petrol and in 3.3-litre displacement in the diesel engine. The engine surely promises fewer emissions, efficiency and responsiveness, and not forgetting less weight. It should as well be reliable as the last one and provide endless miles that will be put on it.
For the petrol variant, it produces 409 hp (305 kW) and 650 Nm of torque and the diesel variant sits at 304 hp (227 kW) and 700 Nm of torque. A 6-speed automatic trim with a naturally aspirated V6 engine will be available in selected regions around the world. The V6 engine has been proven to be smooth, strong and linear with power delivery, so it should be well in place to satisfy the driver.
The interior looks high-end at first glance. The big infotainment screen, the plush leatherette on the seats and dash, the silver details, the use of wood on the centre console and roomy space shows how serious Toyota wants their flagship SUV to excel. They even included the latest Toyota Safety Sense which entails the pre-collision system that detects pedestrians and cyclists even in the nighttime. It also has Emergency steering and crash avoidance function, and Parking Support Brake.
The Land Cruiser 300 Series is expected to launch in South African in August 2021 with prices and more details to be announced towards the launch date.
Source: Toyota Land Cruiser 300 Series