By Steve & Tamami Laser
While Toyota is in the midst of developing futuristic, electrified models, like the bZ4X concept, it hasn’t forgotten its heritage. To help celebrate the 70th anniversary of the iconic Land Cruiser, Toyota has revealed a completely redesigned, next-generation 300 Series.
The Land Cruiser gains new, heritage-inspired styling, rides on a new platform, offers new twin-turbo V6 engines, a 10-speed automatic transmission, a new suspension system, redesigned interior, and the latest safety and connectivity features.
As the first new Land Cruiser wagon since the 200 Series was introduced in 2007, Toyota developed a new GA-F platform for the 300 Series. The first body-on-frame application of the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) is said to preserve exceptional off-road capability, while bringing improved body rigidity, dynamic balance, and off-road performance.
Designed with the concept of “functional beauty,” the new Land Cruiser sports bold good looks, with clean lines and a rugged stance. Details, like the positioning of lights and bumper shapes, are crafted for protection during off-road driving.
An all-new GR Sport model is set to debut, fitted with matte gray alloy wheels, blacked-out exterior trim, and a GR-inspired front design. The grille, with oversized TOYOTA script, along with sleeker LED headlights, give the GR Sport a more dynamic look.
Two new twin-turbo engines, a 3.5-liter V6 gas and 3.3-liter diesel, make their debut. Toyota says the new powerplants are designed to achieve “class-leading driving performance and drivability that surpass those of a conventional V8 engine.” With its lighter body and frame, plus a new Direct-Shift 10-Speed automatic transmission, the Land Cruiser is expected to offer improved efficiency and reduced emissions.
Building on its go anywhere heritage, road-holding performance is improved via new suspensions, including an available Electronic Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System (E-KDSS).
A new Multi-Terrain Monitor gives the driver a real-time view of the road surface underneath and surrounding the vehicle, plus the position of the wheels. Multi-Terrain Select is said to automatically judge the quality of the driving surface and adopt with the most appropriate driving mode.
The redesigned interior offers comfortable seating with two- and three-row variants dependent upon model (GR Sport is expected to offer five-passenger seating, while others can accommodate seven passengers).
GR Sport offers combination black and dark-red accented leather seating surfaces, while other models offer Sandstone accented leather.
Land Cruiser expands its choice of high-tech infotainment and connectivity features, including a new 12.3-inch touchscreen with Android Auto™ and Apple CarPlay®, multiple USB ports, and a head-up display.
Second-generation Toyota Safety Sense includes upgraded active safety and driver assistance features. An available Parking Support Brake recognizes obstacles in front and behind the vehicle when moving slowly in a parking lot, and when backing out of a parking space.
Toyota plans to introduce the new Land Cruiser in select global markets starting this summer.
Note: The 300 Series Land Cruiser models shown in this story are prototypes. Features, specifications, and launch timing for global market production vehicles is subject to change without notice
News sources and photos courtesy of Toyota Motor Corp., Toyota Motor Europe NV/SA, and Toyota New Zealand
Story (intro and commentary) © 2021 CarNichiWa.com