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Turbo power for US Toyota ‘Kluger’

Ausssie Toyota Kluger to continue with 3.5-litre V6 and 2.5-litre hybrid … for now

16 May 2022

TOYOTA North America is set to replace the V6 engine in its strong-selling Highlander (Kluger) seven- and eight-seat SUV range with a new 2.4-litre turbo-petrol four-cylinder engine later this year.


The MY23 range will feature a higher torque I4 in place of the long-serving 3.5-litre V6, providing an additional 17 per cent torque (now 419Nm). Power is rated at 198kW, 20kW less than the superseded engine.


Joining a raft of changes for the 2023 model year, the T24A-FTS turbocharged engine – which is found in Lexus NX350 models locally – is said to offer North American customers the same fuel economy as the outgoing 2GR-FKS V6 at a manufacturer-estimated 24mpg (9.8.L/100km) but with lower overall CO2 and NOx emissions.


It will be offered across all variants – and in conjunction with two- and all-wheel drive configurations – in the updated range and is rated to tow up to 2200kg (braked), 200kg more than Australian-spec models.


The undersquare Toyota/Lexus T24A-FTS engine displaces 2393cc and combines direct and port injection with a twin-scroll turbocharger to output up to 205kW at 6000rpm and 430Nm between 1700-3600rpm.


North American buyers are also offered the choice of the eFour driveline found in Australian models, the A25A-FXS 2.5-litre petrol and dual electric motor combination providing 142kW and 242Nm with combined cycle fuel economy of just 5.6 litres per 100km.


In its home market, the Highlander’s towing capacity is rated to 1600kg, 400kg less than Australian Kluger variants.


At this point in time it is unknown whether the turbocharged Kluger will join the local line-up. Toyota Australia told GoAuto that it is “constantly studying possibilities for vehicle updates to local models, including the Kluger”.


“This popular family model has a strong powertrain offering in Australia, and the demand for our efficient and responsive hybrid electric variant continues to be very strong,” a spokesperson said.


“We have no further announcements to make at this time, but will confirm any future local upgrades for Kluger, including any new powertrain options, in due course.”


Locally, the Toyota Kluger continues to its place toward the pointy end of the sub-$70K large SUV segment with year-to-date sales of 3054 units – or an 8.1 per cent market share.


The segment is led by the Toyota LandCruiser Prado with 9205 units (24.4 per cent share) ahead of the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport (3360 and 8.9 per cent), Isuzu MU-X (3192 and 8.5 per cent), Mazda CX-9 (2684 and 7.1 per cent), Ford Everest (2654 and 7.0 per cent), Subaru Outback (2447 and 6.5 per cent), Mazda CX-8 (1778 and 4.7 per cent), Hyundai Palisade (1489 and 4.0 per cent) and in tenth place the Kia Sorento (1432 and 3.8 per cent).


A new-generation Kluger is slated for local showrooms in 2026.

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