Toyota Land Cruiser is the ultimate beast among the SUVs. Underscored by unique sense of indestructibility and underscored by claim that it never breaks down, Land Cruiser is preferred choice of UN for its war raged rescue or epidemic relief operations. Sitting inside this almost 3-tone monster literally gives you out of world feel. Scorpios, Safaris and even the likes of Fortuners pale into insignificance as you look down to all these so called brute forces. This partly explains why Land Cruiser is preferred choice among politicians, show-biz stars and other A-Class personalities. Although price of Land Cruiser makes only few blessed one entitled to buy it, still this Toyota figures in the wish list of every petrol head including us. We are quite aware that in a salary of auto journalist it is almost impossible to buy Land Cruiser though when chance comes across to review this big monster, we latched on to it. Read on to find how it feels from behind the wheels of the most powerful SUV around.
Design, Style & Interiors
Walk up to the Land Cruiser and an average height person will stare right at the towering grille. Massive gaped grille lends Cruiser an invincible air and large headlamps on either side, provides powerful illumination along with meeting aesthetic function. Profile is slab-sided and though design offers nothing animated, the strength and ruggedness is on full-fledged show. Toyota has aimed to show ultimate character of the SUV and hence, all the elements are incorporated keeping this fact in mind.
Stepping inside warrants climbing up this towering SUV. Quality of the material is A-rated and company has loaded it with equipment. Large touchscreen display at centre is at heart of the things and offers loads of functional features. We specifically like the ease with which navigation function perform. Electrically operated front row has excellent outside view which is in fact necessary given the large footprints of the SUV. Audio system with 14 JBL speakers surrounds you in amazing music sense and equally matched is the sophistication of automatic climate control. Land Cruiser offers ten airbags keeping the promise of offering unmatched safety. Front and rear rows of the SUV are quite spacious. Almost 2-meter wide cabin helps to liberate enough space though third row somewhat lacks in comfort. Under thigh support is bit on lower side, still the comfort levels are acceptable. Third row seats fold sidewise which obstruct the boot space to some extent however 1267-litre of luggage area is good enough to swallow complete house luggage.
Engine, Transmission & Driving Dynamics
Powered by 4.5-litre V8 twin-turbo diesel engine, the car puts out 290 PS and 66 Kg-m of max power and max torque respectively. Such powerful figures are good enough to propel this 3-tonne SUV from dash to 100 kmph in under 15 seconds. There is no turbo-lag thanks to twin-turbo boosting the power right from the start.
Part-throttle responses are equally eager and SUV lunges forward in city with same enthusiasm as it does on highway. In fact the way this SUV moves belies its XXL size and proportions. 6-speed automatic transmission is a bit slow to respond at lower rpms though up in the rev-range, this gearbox is quick to respond. Clutch feel is a bit disconnected though all-around disc braking provides a solid bite.
Underpinned by ladder on frame construction, Land Cruiser is true blue off-roader. Its adjustable suspension can elevate up to 10 cm which although add to its credentials though cause a lot of body roll. 18 inch alloys are big in size but size of Land Cruiser makes even these large wheels puny. Further the suspension can be customized to sport, comfort and standard mode. Unlike the other models, here the genuine difference can be felt between different modes.
With price touching the hefty tag of Rs 1.34 crore (ex-showroom, Delhi), Land Cruiser doesn't come cheap. But then it doesn’t need to be. The crown of king of beats and ultimate invincible SUV has to match with equally impressive cost factor. After all, it has been made to be purchased only be few lucky ones and this price ensure that it retains its exclusivity. Land Cruiser has left us speechless as we are all praise for this impressive 5-meter long beast. Whether its intimidating exterior or quality interiors, this SUV has got its priorities absolutely right. Further Toyota has minced no words in positioning Land Cruiser for the crème de la crème. It’s clear we don’t figure in this category though we have thoroughly enjoyed our full day with this ultimate Toyota.
Style & Substance 4/5 Ride & Handling 4/5
Interiors & Ergonomics 4/5 Safety & Equipment 4.5/5
Power-Plant & Transmission 4/5 Fuel Efficiency 3/5
Value for money 3/5