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Toyota LandCruiser 300 series breaks cover

First all-new Toyota LandCruiser in 14 years revealed, slated for Q4 launch in Oz

10 Jun 2021

TOYOTA has finally unveiled its new-generation 300 Series LandCruiser and confirmed a fourth-quarter arrival for the Australian market, with the flagship off-roader ditching its fabled V8 powertrain in favour of a gruntier but more efficient twin-turbo six.


Brandishing a boxy but modernised new look, Toyota says the 300 Series LandCruiser is lighter, stiffer and more capable than its 200 Series predecessor thanks in part to its new TNGA platform, new-generation powertrain and improved suspension.


Despite losing two cylinders and 1200cc of capacity, the new force-fed 3.3-litre V6 diesel engine churns out 227kW of power and 700Nm of torque – improvements of 27kW and 50Nm over the V8 – with performance further aided by the fact the 300 Series is 100kg lighter than its predecessor.


The new mill is paired exclusively to an equally new 10-speed automatic transmission resulting in “noticeably lower fuel consumption and emissions”, although Toyota is yet to release official figures to support those claims.


To help make the big bruiser as capable off-road as its legendary nameplate suggests, engineers set about extending the LandCruiser’s suspension travel to aid articulation and developing a new ‘Multi Terrain Select’ function that automatically judges the road surface and selects the most appropriate driving mode.


Other new technology will include an optional electronic ‘Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System’ (e-KDSS) – electronic sway bar disconnector – and a new ‘Multi-Terrain Monitor’ designed to help improve visibility off-road.


As a new-generation vehicle, Toyota has thrown the kitchen sink at the 300 Series in terms of safety features, with all versions to come with the latest Toyota Safety Sense active safety package that now includes a new pre-collision system capable of detecting both pedestrians (day and night) and cyclists (day).


Other headline safety features are vehicle and pedestrian detection at intersections, including when turning, as well as an emergency steering and crash-avoidance function.


Although the LandCruiser 300 is underpinned by the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) that has been the basis of new Toyota and Lexus models since 2015, it retains the separate frame structure that lends itself to heavy-duty off-road use and a 3.5-tonne braked towing capacity.


The shape of the 300’s bumpers and light positions have been designed to avoid damage while off-road, according to Toyota, which says the overall dimensions, departure and approach angles are broadly similar to the outgoing 200 Series.


Overseas markets will have access to a 3.5-litre twin-turbo petrol engine developing 305kW and 650Nm, also distributing drive through a 10-speed automatic transmission. GoAuto understands petrol-powered versions will be a further 100kg lighter than the diesels.


A hybrid option is also on the cards.


Toyota Australia Vice President Sales, Marketing and Franchise Operations Sean Hanley said the LandCruiser development team had taken “extensive input from Australian owners who have experience in some of the world's harshest environments”.


"The new LandCruiser range brings improved design and advanced new technologies that advance its performance in all conditions while enhancing its comfort, convenience and safety as a luxury vehicle."


Since the LandCruiser lineage was established in 1951 with the Toyota BJ, more than 10.4 million off-roaders bearing the legendary badge (including 70 Series and Prado) have been sold around the world, of which 1.12 million – more than 10 per cent – were delivered in Australia.


Despite the 300 Series being launched this year, last month the combined 200 and 70 series volume made the LandCruiser Australia’s fourth best-selling vehicle with 3399 examples delivered, bringing the year-to-date tally to 14,877 units.

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