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Road test: The amazing Toyota Land Cruiser LC200

Last updated on: February 1, 2011 11:07 IST

Road test: The amazing Toyota Land Cruiser LC200

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Carwale.com


The Land Cruiser is the oldest Toyota model to be on sale half-a-century after it was launched.

The first generation Land Cruiser -- the Toyota BJ -- was launched in 1951, in 1956 it became the first mass produced Toyota to be exported from Japan.

Back then the Toyota BJ was powered by a 3.4-litre six cylinder engine.

Every newer generation of the Land Cruiser kept growing larger than the previous, the latest and newest being the eighth generation Land Cruiser 200 series.

Price

Toyota Land Cruiser LC200 VX (Premium) 2 comes at a price of about Rs 88,30,000, ex-showroom Delhi.

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Image: Toyota Land Cruiser LC200 VX (Premium) 2.
Photographs: Courtesy, Carwale.com
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Road test: The amazing Toyota Land Cruiser LC200

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Design/Styling

The Toyota Land Cruiser 200 Series is based on the Lexus LX platform, "it retains many design characteristics of the older generation," said chief engineer Sadayoshi Koyari, who designed this SUV.

The Land Cruiser's large front end gets a sprawling grille with horizontal chrome slats proudly wearing the Toyota badge.

The large bulging head lamps extend to the fender blending well with the rectangular fog lamps and clamshell hood.

The side profile of the Land Cruiser is flanged by the large greenhouse, strong shoulder line and 18-inch tyres.

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Road test: The amazing Toyota Land Cruiser LC200

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The faint swage line, the well-chiseled rocker and the thick D-pillar add to the rugged look of the Land Cruiser.

The small tail lamps somehow look like they were added as an afterthought with a wide rear protruding bumper and a spoiler on the tail gate.

Toyota has retained the body on frame design for its Land Cruiser and stuck to the basics to build an all new chassis for the Land Cruiser.

High tensile steel has been used to reduce the weight of the frame and hydro-form technology to increase the rigidity.

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Road test: The amazing Toyota Land Cruiser LC200

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The Toyota Land Cruiser has very plush interior styling.  It gets black and grey dual-tone interiors, with some wood-finish.

Step into the car and you will notice a number of switches and knobs placed ergonomically.

The Land Cruiser sports a four-spoke steering wheel with 10 buttons for audio controls, central display and cruise control.

The instrument cluster is made up of twin blue backlit-dials, a central digital display reads the engaged gear, transmission mode, ambient temperature and current fuel consumption.

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Road test: The amazing Toyota Land Cruiser LC200

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The Land Cruiser has large leather seats that are very comfy and can accommodate large adults in the first two rows.

The third row is a bit tight on space and can seat kids. The front row seats have electric adjust and the steering can be adjusted for rake and reach, this makes it easier for the driver.

If you are living in a desert and need instant cooling, the Land Cruiser has climate-control air-conditioning with four different zones and 28 air outlets.

The Land Cruiser gets a Pioneer audio system with a six-CD changer supported by nine-speakers.

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Road test: The amazing Toyota Land Cruiser LC200

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A touch screen and a six-DVD changer with 14 JBL speakers are available as optional accessories.

It comes equipped with Satellite Navigation, but again we wish it had maps for Indian roads. We love the chiller box in the armrest!

The SUV has a versatile seating arrangement, and the last row can be folded completely to provide a flat bed. To our dismay the seats have to be folded manually as opposed to the electric ones offered by the competitors.

The boot of the Land Cruiser has a decent space of 259 and 701 litres. On flipping the second row, the volume increases to a massive 1,267 litres. For the safety of the occupants, the Land Cruiser comes with ten airbags.

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Road test: The amazing Toyota Land Cruiser LC200

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The Toyota Land Cruiser LC200 comes with a 4.5-litre twin turbo, Toyota's first common rail V8, diesel engine which churns out 281bhp of power and 650Nm of maximum torque.

The engine block is made of graphite cast iron which is strong and light. The engine has a good low range torque and the drivability in city traffic or highways isn't an issue.

The NVH levels on the engine are low however a cold start has a bit of diesel clatter. In our performance run, the Land Cruiser galloped to 100kph in 10.4 seconds and completed the quarter mile in 17.2 seconds.

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Road test: The amazing Toyota Land Cruiser LC200

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This oil burner transmits power to the wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. Toyota claims to have designed this autobox to generate higher torque and make off-roading easier.

The shifts on this box are smooth and don't feel torpid. During our kickdown test, the SUV took 2.9 seconds from 30-50 kph and 2.8 seconds for the 50-70 kph run.

The Toyota Land Cruiser sports a double wishbone in the front and a four-link coil suspension at the rear. The suspension has been set to give the best ride comfort and off-road performance.

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Road test: The amazing Toyota Land Cruiser LC200

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The ride is indeed composed, and the large SUV glides smoothly over potholes. The long suspension travel makes it easier for the Land Cruiser to tackle rough roads.

Considering the size of the 200 Series, it does have some body roll and the ESP kicks in on the slightest roll.

The brakes on the Land Cruiser are good and they bite progressively, the ABS and brake assist come handy.

During our brake test, the Land Cruiser came to a complete standstill from a speed of 80kph in 31.7 metres even in damp conditions.

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The 285/60R18 tyres come as standard with five-split spoke alloys on the Land Cruiser.

The Toyota Land Cruiser costs Rs 87.76 (ex-showroom, Mumbai) which is a bit of an expensive buy; today most of the European competition has a lot more to offer at a similar price.

Being a Toyota product, the Land Cruiser is a maintenance-free vehicle and the overall cost of ownership should be low.

So, if you wish to own a capable off-roader which has some road presence and is also cheap to maintain, look no further than the Toyota Land Cruiser.



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