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by Matt Campbell

The 2015 Toyota LandCruiser Prado Altitude is now on sale, offering “increased appeal among city buyers” according to the Japanese brand.

The 2014 version of the Altitude became the first Prado sold here to feature an “out of sight” spare wheel and a rear glass hatch section that opens separately to the boot. The spare is positioned under the boot of the car, in the spot where the secondary fuel tank usually sits, though it retains its large 87-litre primary tank.

The 2015 model is more affordable than its predecessor, at $65,990 plus on-road costs (previously $68,520), due in part to the price cuts offered by the Japanese brand following the signing of a Free Trade Agreement.

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That price means the Altitude receives $10,000 of equipment for a $5000 premium over the GXL diesel model on which it’s based. It shares the same drivetrain – a 3.0-litre turbo diesel four-cylinder engine and five-speed automatic transmission.

Toyota Australia’s executive director sales and marketing, Tony Cramb, claimed that city buyers in particular are keen on the notion of a Prado without a spare on the tailgate.

“Customers in metropolitan areas accounted for a markedly higher proportion of sales for the restyled Prado Altitude than for the regular Prado diesel models,” Cramb said.

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“The increase of six per cent reflects the added appeal of the new style among these buyers, and the 900 cars we had on offer were snapped up quickly,” he said.

“As a result, Toyota has upped the order for the latest Prado Altitude by one-third to 1200 cars, providing an opportunity to obtain further feedback on the style and convenience of the Prado Altitude rear design.”

Styling changes for the 2015 Altitude are limited to dark grey 17-inch alloy wheels (the previous model had silver wheels). Other extras that the Altitude gains over a GXL include leather trim with grey inserts and stitching, a tilt-and-slide moonroof, Blu-Ray rear entertainment system with three wireless headphone sets and a remote control, auto-dimming rear-view mirror, power-adjustable front seats and rain-sensing wipers. Three-zone climate control is standard, too.

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The Altitude also gets a 14-speaker JBL audio system from the more-expensive Prado models, along with DAB+ digital radio, a 7.0-inch media system with satellite navigation (including Suna live traffic alerts). A reverse-view camera, rear parking sensors and seven airbags are standard. There are seven seats, too.

There are four premium paint offerings, including Eclipse Black (not offered on any other Prado), Crystal Pearl (from VX and Kakadu), Silver Pearl and Graphite.




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