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Price-hiked Toyota Prado here for long haul

Long game: The previous generation 120 Series Toyota Prado was on the market for seven years, while the current 150 Series is already up to six years and counting.

Engine change, sales success ensure 150 series Toyota Prado will soldier on

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Toyota logo3 Sep 2015

By TIM ROBSON

A NEW diesel engine and six-speed automatic gearbox, along with a revised petrol powerplant, will ensure that the 150 Series Toyota Prado will live on longer than any generation that has gone before it.

Now in its sixth year on sale, the Prado was extensively overhauled in 2013, with a raft of exterior and interior changes to the four-door seven-seater.

The 120 carried the line for seven years through to 2009, when the current-shape Prado first appeared.

Now, with the addition of Toyota’s newest 1GD diesel engine and A60 six-speed automatic transmission, the current Prado platform looks set to run through until at least 2017.

Toyota Australia executive director sales and marketing Tony Cramb would not comment about on the prospect of a new Prado, only saying “let’s just concentrate on this one,” quipped.

Meanwhile, Mr Cramb said that the price increases for the 2016 Prado are fair, considering the additional value of the new drivetrain.

“If you look at the value you’re getting for the incremental price (increase), I think it’s extraordinary,” Mr Cramb told GoAuto.

“And don’t forget that at the start of the year we did reposition many of the vehicles, as well as handing back the JAEPA (Japan-Australia Economic Partnership Agreement) – what we were previously paying in duty, we refunded customers from that point on, because we weren’t being charged that by the government.”

Mr Cramb said that the Prado range was repositioned at the beginning of the year, with the knowledge that the new engine and transmission package was imminent, leaving an “incremental” price increase to be applied.

“If you look at the volume models (GX, GXL) they’re up by a thousand bucks. You get a new engine, plus you get satellite navigation on the GXL. It’s not a lot of money for what you get.”

Mr Cramb suggested that the popular GXL Altitude model might also make a return, which would extend the model life of the 120 Series even further.

“Altitude was a special edition, and it may well be that we introduce an Altitude edition (of this Prado), though we’re not doing that right now,” he said. “Who knows, though – it was very successful and went really well for us.

That concept we’d have to look at from a model life planning point of view.”

Debuting in 1990 as the 70 Series, the first-generation Prado ran through until 1996, to be replaced by the 90 Series, which was superseded in 2002 by the 120 Series.

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