The Toyota Land Cruiser has been around now for very close to sixty years, with the first versions coming off the production lines in Japan way back in 1954. A classic four wheel drive, the Toyota Land Cruiser has seen more than ten total updates as well as being produced either as a utility truck, station wagon, and even as a soft top at one time or another during its long history. No matter what format, the Toyota Land Cruiser has earned itself a very special niche as a no compromise, four-wheel drive vehicle capable of performing well in any terrain and in the toughest of climates.
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The latest version of the Toyota Land Cruiser, the series 2000, was unveiled late in 2007 after a total revamp. Based on the Toyota's Lexus LX 570 platform while given a newer, shorter and stronger frame, the Land Cruiser 200 series is marketed in North America with a massive 5.7 liter V8 petrol engine capable producing 284 horsepower and 401 lbs of torque, paired with a six speed automatic gearbox.
That kind of power might be inclined to make reviewers think that the Toyota Land Cruiser would be vastly overpowered as an on road vehicle, even bearing in mind that it has a gross weight of 7,275 pounds. However reviews show that the Land Cruiser handles itself pretty well, and even returns an average nineteen miles per gallon.
However, it is off the road that the Land Cruiser has always come into its own, with modifications to the 200 series making it as more capable than ever to handle any challenge that the elements can throw at it, with its on- body frame being even further strengthened by the addition of light weight but beefier, high tensile steel sections. Add to that a suspension system comprising front and back double wishbones, providing a play of more than nine inches either way with 27 inches of rear-wheel articulation being reported in some reviews. The latest version of the Toyota Land Cruiser comes with an in-house developed CRAWL system, which allows the sustainment of low uniform vehicle speed through using combined brakes and throttle control.
As far as access and storage is concerned, the Land Cruiser is designated as a seven seater, although for the sake of everyone's comfort, at least two if not three of these being carried should be children. The mid passenger seats are divided into a 40-20-40 configuration with the third row is a folding 50-50 split. Where its cargo carrying capacity is touched on, the 2012 Toyota Land Cruiser is capable of providing 81 cubic feet of cargo space with the third rows seats folded sideways, which they do with tremendous ease, and if the occasion demands it, they can actually be removed altogether.