The past week I had so much fun testing and reviewing the Toyota Land Cruiser LX V8.
My mission was to test out the Toyota Land Cruiser LX V8 and to find out if it is “Hot or Not”. On Tuesday the 8th of April, 2014 the friendly people at African Outdoor Group delivered the Toyota Land Cruiser LX V8 to my office with a full tank of diesel. The test drive was organized by Clynton Yon Product Communications Manager at Toyota South Africa and Leo Kok Senior Manager Corporate Communications at Toyota South Africa.
I haven’t tested the Toyota Land Cruiser LX V8 before and was quite surprised to find out how big the vehicle is. The Toyota Land Cruiser LX V8 is 5220 mm long (length) and 1870 mm wide (width) and 1945 mm high (height), so is slightly taller and bigger than the average truck (pick-up) on the road.
My first experience with the truck started when I had to drive the Land Cruiser LX V8 out of the office. I first thought that it is going to be a little bit tough to get the BIG Land Cruiser LX V8 out of the narrow driveway and to make a U-turn, but I was surprised at how easy it was. The Toyota Land Cruiser LX V8 is standing much taller than most cars and with this comes better 360 degree vision of your environment, making it easy to drive the car and to navigate the small space in our office park.
The only problem I had was the turning circle of the Toyota Land Cruiser which is an estimated 7.2 meters. So it’s more than your average sedan, but with the advantage that you sit very high inside the Toyota Land Cruiser it is easy to see where the car is positioned. Later when I tested the 4×4 Capabilities of the Toyota Land Cruiser in open space this did not bother me again and it was easy to drive the Toyota Land Cruiser wherever I wanted it to go.
Although the Toyota Land Cruiser has been built traditionally for its 4×4 and Off-road capabilities I must admit that I loved driving it in Johannesburg City Traffic. There is something about the size of the car and the perspective that it gives you on other cars on the road that makes one feel powerful, safe and aware. I had the “I am king of the road” feeling while driving it in city traffic.
The Toyota Land Cruiser was very responsive to the road. The powerful V8 Diesel Engine is quick off the mark, not once did I feel like I was driving a slow truck made only for 4×4 and off-road tracks.
The Styling of the Toyota Land Cruiser
The looks of the Toyota Land Cruiser have changed over the past 63 years since the first Land Cruiser model made its debut in 1951, but it is still easily recognizable and there are many similarities to the original Land Cruiser. The model which I tested is based on the “70 Series” Land Cruiser Models which were first build in 1984.
Although the appearance of the Toyota Land Cruiser LX V8 did not change that much, the interior is very modern and includes necessities like built in radio and navigation, making it “Technologically” advanced enough. But it’s still plain enough to make it one of the toughest 4×4’s on the market without too many thrills. The Toyota Land Cruiser interior is designed to be easily cleaned and easy to maintain for those times when you’re driving it on a farm, field or dirt road where dirt and dust are a cars worst enemy.
The Toyota Land Cruiser LX V8 hot or not?
After the test drive I can tell you that the Toyota Land Cruiser LX V8 is HOT. It is a tough car most suitable for dirt roads, farm work, game driving and areas where you are required to have a tough vehicle with powerful 4×4 capabilities. It may not be suitable for “Sport Car” fans and “Fancy 4×4’s built for Sandton Roads” where the capabilities of the car are less important than the looks.
However depending on your image, the car may suite you better in the city if you want to portray the “outdoor rough and tough image”. There is nothing wrong with the Toyota Land Cruiser being used in the city even though it is huge. The feeling you get when driving in the field is going to be similar to what you get in the city. Driving the Toyota Land Cruiser makes one feel in control, safe, aware and powerful.
Land Cruiser YouTube video
Below is a short video Virtual Walk video of the Land Cruiser LX V8 that I tested.