Toyota Australia has released the latest generation of the LandCruiser wagon – the new 200 Series, the vehicle that helped Toyota establish its foothold in the world automotive markets.
The new 200 Series has a stronger body, improved suspension, more powerful V8 engines that use less fuel, and new technology that makes it more capable in all conditions.
The LandCruiser 200 is available in three grades – GXL, VX and Sahara – with two engine choices, both of them V8s.
The first is a new 4.5-litre twin-turbo V8 diesel which lifts power to 195kW and a useful 650Nm – fuel consumption remains relatively low at a comfortable 10.3 litres per100km combined cycle.
Accompanying the diesel is a Euro IV-compliant petrol 4.7-litre V8 engine producing 202kW and 410Nm with fuel consumption at a cringe-worthy 14.5 litre/100km combined cycle.
The updated petrol V8 is matched to a five-speed automatic transmission while the diesel engine is mated to a new six-speed automatic transmission, both featuring a sequential shift that allows the driver to select gears manually.
An all-new chassis structure offers superior strength and rigidity by maintaining a separate frame and body, with an integrated tow bar capable of hauling up to 3500kg.
The 200 Series is 60mm longer and 30mm wider, contributing to the increased interior space, however the adoption of a shorter-format V8 means the bonnet length has been reduced for improved visibility.
An Australian-invented Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System (KDSS) combines two previously contradictory benefits – longer wheel articulation for the most challenging off-road driving and the roll control needed for confident on-road driving.
Another innovation is the world’s first Crawl Control system exclusive to petrol models. It automatically controls the engine and brakes to maintain very low speeds – in forward or reverse – with minimal spinning or locking of the wheels.
Multi-terrain ABS provides the correct brake strategy on dirt, gravel, sand and bitumen whilst Hill-Start Assist Control minimises vehicle roll-back when starting on steep hills or climbing slippery surfaces.
Diesel models will also feature Downhill Assist Control, which controls speed on steep off-road descents.
Vehicle Stability Control and Active Traction Control are now standard across the range with the option for up to 10 airbags.
Also, for the first time for LandCruiser owners, the 200 series will feature a dash-mounted tyre-pressure monitoring system which displays the temperature and pressure of all five tyres (including the spare).
The rugged exterior is matched by interior comfort, where up to eight occupants are catered for with four-zone air conditioning, leather trim as standard on the VX and Sahara and full electric seat adjustment.
An optional fully integrated touch-screen system features a satellite navigation system with DVD mapping, and audio unit that has a six-in-dash CD/DVD player with MP3 capability, and a nine-speaker AM/FM audio unit with Bluetooth functionality.
Smart Entry and Start Smart are standard across the range which allows the driver to enter, exit and start the vehicle without using the ignition key or transmitter button.
The entry-level GXL petrol model begins at $69,990 with a $10,000 premium for the diesel. The Sahara turbo-diesel tops the range at $104,990.