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When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get a Land Cruiser

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The DriveWrite Archives Topics:  Toyota Land Cruiser

When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get a Land Cruiser

Geoff Maxted
September 3, 2013

Toyota Land Cruiser
There are cars that have a general purpose and cars that are perfect for posing. There are cars ideal for ferrying Labradors up and down motorways and cracking cars for towing caravans; but when the going gets really tough the answer is usually a Toyota Land Cruiser. If you have a hankering to visit the war-torn regions of the world then the chances are you will be driven to your inevitable demise in one of these workhorses. If at any time you are stuck in snow drift you are likely to be rescued by a smug looking bloke in a you-know-what, such is their reputation.

The Toyota Land Cruiser has been with us, amazingly, since 1951 and in thattime it has seen many changes and improvements as you’d expect. Certainly it is the longest running series in the Toyota back catalogue. It has been produced as a hardtop, a convertible and a truck. It is built like a tank and has in the past driven like one but that’s not its virtue - its USP is reliability and longevity and in the Outback or the remote regions of South Sudan this is what is prized above all.

The next version is due out in 2014. It is better looking than before with many styling changes and improvements and the company alleges that the handling has been greatly improved and not before time too. It is no less vast and is not a car that fits well in the crowded roads of town but otherwise - as is at least partially evidenced by the image - you will no longer feel like you are driving a piece of agricultural history.

It goes without saying that the new model comes with all the techno-gadgets that festoon every vehicle these days but important safety features now include a new Blind Spot Monitor and Rear Cross Traffic Alert. Power comes from a 3.0L turbo diesel that has been improved to meet Euro5 standards. CO2 emissions have been reduced slightly to 209 and 214g/km for the three and five-door models respectively which is pretty good for this class of vehicle.

The new front-end treatment is the stand-out feature of the 2014 Land Cruiser's refreshed design. Toyota has introduced a more prominent grille that marks an evolution of the traditional arrangement of five parallel vertical bars, giving them a stronger appearance and sinking them into the upper edge of the new, deeper front bumper. Trim varies according to model and the interior looks very smart.

The new 2014 Land Cruiser retains the classic body-on-frame construction that helps define its exceptional off-road ability. This ruggedness doesn't mean a sacrifice in the kind of comfort customers require for day-to-driving and Toyota has gone further; making details adjustments to the suspension to achieve an even better balance of stability and ride quality.

This applies both to the standard set-up and the Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System featured on higher grade models. DriveWrite likes the look of this new Land Cruiser. Let us hope it lives up to the advanced publicity.

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