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Toyota Prado Altitude flies high again

High achiever: Toyota's LandCruiser Prado Altitude was met with such a positive response that the Japanese car-maker decided to bring in 300 more of the restyled SUV.

Boost in customer demand pushes Toyota to up Prado Altitude numbers by 33 per cent


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27 Feb 2015

STRONG customer interest has seen Toyota Australia increase production numbers of its special-edition LandCruiser Prado Altitude by 300 vehicles.

Introduced in August 2014 with a 900-unit production run, Toyota Australia quickly sold its allocated stock and has increased the volume total to 1200, while dropping the price from $68,520, before on-road costs, to $65,990 – a saving of $2530 – thanks to Australia's free-trade agreement with Japan.

Based on the automatic Prado GXL diesel, the Altitude is $5000 pricier than its donor car, but Toyota is promising $10,000 worth of extras.

The Altitude differs from the regular Prado in that the spare wheel is relocated from the outside of the tailgate to the underside of the car, replacing the spare fuel tank but also allowing easier access to the rear cargo space.

Making do with just a single 87-litre fuel tank, the 3.0-litre turbo-diesel four-cylinder and five-speed automatic transmission propelling the Prado Altitude has a combined fuel consumption figure of 8.5 litres per 100 kilometres, meaning a driving range of more than 1000km.

The Altitude also benefits from gear found in its higher-spec VX and Kakadu siblings, including moonroof, Blu-Ray entertainment system, 14-speaker JBL audio system, seven-inch touchscreen, satellite navigation, reversing camera, parking sensors and chrome and carbon-look interior highlights.

Safety features include seven airbags, vehicle stability and traction control, hill-start assist and anti-skid brakes as standard.

New to the 2015 Altitude are 17-inch alloy wheels finished in dark grey, a contrast to the bright finish alloys on last year's variant.

The Prado Altitude also falls into Toyota's Service Advantage program, capping scheduled service pricing at $220 for the first three years, or 60,000km, of ownership.

Toyota Australia executive director sales and marketing Tony Cramb said he expects the Prado Altitude to be popular among consumers who want the flexibility of the restyled tail end, but don't need the extra range provided by the secondary fuel tank.

“Customers in metropolitan areas accounted for a markedly higher proportion of sales for the restyled Prado Altitude than for the regular Prado diesel models,” he said.

“As a result, Toyota has upped the order for the latest Prado Altitude by one-third to 1200 cars, providing an opportunity to obtain further feedback on the style and convenience of the Prado Altitude rear design.”

Toyota Prado was Australia's second-favourite large-size SUV in 2014, with 16,112 units sold for the year, accounting for 15 per cent of the market.

The market-leading Jeep Grand Cherokee sold 16,582 units in 2014 and, interestingly, features a spare-wheel free rear end.

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