First of all, a HUGE thank you to Toyota of Long Beach20 minutes ago
The VDJ79 is an evolution of the 70 series Land Cruiser that was first introduced in late 1984. Though never offered in the United States, the 70 series is the true inheritor of the FJ40's no-nonsense spirit. Light and compact compared with its 60 and 80 series contemporaries, the 70 series has always maintained a strong emphasis on capability over creature comfort. Its rugged, simple sensibilities have helped to keep it in production for over 20 years.
This Toyota’s interior and its build quality live up to the rig’s high cost of entry, however. Items such as the door pulls and the power-window switches move with a weightiness that’s far beyond those of typical Toyota-badged products. Additionally, every Land Cruiser comes well equipped with features including LED headlights, a proximity key with push-button start, leather upholstery, heated and cooled front seats, a 9.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with navigation, four-zone automatic climate control, adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning, automatic high-beam headlights, and blind-spot monitoring. Our test truck’s only extra item was a $225 set of carpeted floor and cargo mats.
In 2002, a 5-year development plan on a successor to the 100-series platform commenced under Sadayoshi Koyari and Tetsuya Tada. By 2004, 10 years after the design selection of its predecessor in 1994, a final production design was settled on for the 2008 J200. Prototype related tests were conducted for over 2 years between 2004 and early 2007. The redesigned Toyota Land Cruiser was introduced in late 2007. Known as the 200 Series, it shares the Lexus LX 570's platform and overall design. The frame was new, derived from the second-generation Tundra but shortened and strengthened by 20 percent. Bigger brake rotors and calipers were added and the front suspension was made strengthened than its predecessor. The underbelly is also protected by skid plates. The roof pillars were redesigned to better protect occupants in a rollover.
Production of the first generation of the Land Cruiser began in 1951 as Toyota's version of a Jeep-like vehicle. The Land Cruiser has been produced in convertible, hardtop, station wagon and cab chassis bodystyles. The Land Cruiser's reliability and longevity has led to huge popularity, especially in Australia where it is the best-selling body-on-frame, four-wheel drive vehicle. Toyota also extensively tests the Land Cruiser in the Australian outback – considered to be one of the toughest operating environments in both temperature and terrain. In Japan, the Land Cruiser is exclusive to Toyota Japanese dealerships called Toyota Store.
With real doors, roll-down windows and available air conditioning, the 20 series brought the BJ-era Land Cruiser into civilian life. But a subtle design trait on the dashboard foretold Land Cruiser's future: the glove box and instrument panel were identically shaped and interchangeable, making manufacturing a left-hand- or right-hand-drive version equally easy. For Toyota, foreign markets were the new target.
Starting in 2011, the 270 kW (367 PS; 362 hp) 3UR-FE engine was offered alongside with the previous engines. For 2012, the 1GR-FE gained dual VVT-i and power was increased to 202 kW (275 PS; 271 hp), the 4.7 L 2UZ-FE was dropped in favour of the new 227 kW (309 PS; 304 hp) 4.6 L 1UR-FE, and the 5.7 L and 4.5 L diesel were unchanged, although the latter was dropped in some markets.
1993 – An advanced 24-valve, 4.5 L six-cylinder petrol engine, 1FZ-FE was introduced. Larger brakes were added from October 1992 and the total wheelbase was made slightly longer. Front and rear axle lockers (code k294) were available as an option. The High Pinion Electric Locking front differential become available in the US models. In May 1993, Toyota began using R134 refrigerant in the air conditioning system. Serial numbers lower than JT3DJ81xxxxx38947 use the R12 refrigerant.
1990 – The 80 series station wagon was introduced, replacing the 60 series. All 80s sold in North America and Europe now have a full-time four-wheel drive system. In Japan, Africa, and Australia, a part-time system was still available. 80s produced between 1990 and 1991 had an open centre differential which was lockable in 4HI and automatically locked in 4LO. From 1992 onward, vehicles with anti-lock brakes had a viscous coupling that sent a maximum of 30% torque to the non-slipping axle. The differential was lockable in 4HI and automatically locked in 4LO.
In Japan, the Land Cruiser had a minor change in 2009 when it received the 4.6 L V8 1UR-FE engine and the gearbox was replaced with a 6-speed automatic. Although the new 4608 cc 1UR-FE is smaller than the old 4663 cc 2UZ-FE engine, the power has been increased from 212 to 234 kW (288 to 318 PS; 284 to 314 hp), torque increased from 448 to 460 N⋅m (330 to 339 lb⋅ft) and fuel consumption improved from 6.6 to 7.1 km/L (19 to 20 mpg‑imp; 16 to 17 mpg‑US) (Japan 10·15 mode measurement).
Land Cruisers we’ve driven have felt rock solid, but interior materials don’t impress. Soft-touch trim on their dashboards and upper door panels contrasts with UN-grade hard plastics on the center console. For $86,000, the Land Cruiser should be dressier inside—especially since the five-seat LX 570 has real wood trim and few non-padded surfaces for about the same cost.