Numerous overseas reports state that Toyota will soon reveal a new compact Land Cruiser model. Here’s what we know so far:
HAVE you ever wished that Toyota would produce a compact Land Cruiser model?
That could come true sooner than we think, according to the latest reports from abroad, and it could even have a silly name like Land Hopper.
A well known Japanese website called BestCarWeb says that a new compact ‘Cruiser’ model will be revealed at the Japan Mobility Show in late October.
The vehicle’s silhouette has already been previewed by Toyota during the recent unveiling of the new Land Cruiser Prado.
The new baby Cruiser is expected to look very much like a smaller version of the latter, with a chunky exterior design inspired by the Compact Cruiser EV concept of 2022.
However, unlike that design study it appears that the new compact model will be offered with internal combustion engines, while an electric version could join the line-up at a later stage.
Exactly which ICE powertrains feature in the new model is still the subject of widespread and varied speculation, but regardless of how that cookie crumbles, Toyota will almost certainly offer a hybrid-heavy mix.
In terms of size, the new compact Cruiser is said to boast a similar footprint to the current Toyota Corolla Cross, according to BestCarWeb, but unlike the latter it is likely to be built around a tough ladder-frame platform, which could be a downsized version of the TNGA-F architecture that underpins the new Prado and LC300.
The aforementioned Japanese publication also speculates that it could use the “Land Hopper” name, as that was recently registered in Japan by Toyota. However, thankfully there also remains a good chance that the carmaker would rename it for international markets, Carscoops reported.
Pricing in Japan is expected to start at around 3 million yen, which would be just under R400,000 at today’s exchange rate, although import duties and so forth would no doubt push local pricing upwards if it ever were to reach South Africa.
Either way, and regardless of whether it gets that silly name or not, a Corolla Cross-sized SUV with Land Cruiser capabilities could certainly become a hit across the globe, offering customers something larger and more user-friendly than a Suzuki Jimny, but without the bulky baggage of larger LC models.