Toyota Land Cruiser 200

Toyota Land Cruiser 200 Review: “Has better design & safety equipment, but has old-style performance” by Hiroshi Matsushita

The Land Cruiser 200 has been well received all over the world as a classic 4WD off-road vehicle. Customers, who drive cars off-road as if they’re driving on the road, gave high evaluation to this model for its high maneuverability, low failure tendencies, easy servicing and the like.

In the Land Cruiser series, there is also a heavy-duty model, which is the 70, so it might be alright to classify the luxurious 200 as an SUV, but it is actually more of a 4WD off-road vehicle than SUV.

The 200 was debuted in 2007 and it had minor updates in 2011 as well as in 2013. However, more of its parts were updated in 2015, such as changes in its interior and exterior designs as well as its safety equipment.

As for its exterior design, it looks new with its even more magnificent front grille, as well as its LED headlamps. It looks magnificent as it is matched with its huge body size. As for its interior, it adopts a metal-toned embellishment and a comfortable livery. Its overall body looks luxurious and it has a high material feel.

On the other hand, it’s quite difficult to get inside the Land Cruiser. It has a sidestep that enables the driver to get inside by stepping on it, but it would be difficult to get into the vehicle without using the assist grip mounted at the front pillar.

When riding on it, its front field of vision is clear given its high seating location, and its dented hood supports that setting. Moreover, with this current update, the Land Cruiser 200 has been equipped with a Multi-Terrain Monitor, an optional equipment that displays images reflected on the cameras; it is located on the overhead part of the car to ensure safety in the surroundings.

Furthermore, it has also been equipped with the Toyota Safety Sense P, which is Toyota’s latest safety technology. The Toyota Safety Sense P includes a Pre-crash Safety System that can distinguish the presence of a person or a pedestrian through its milli-wave radar and monocular camera.

Its power train does not have any changes. It is still equipped with a V8 4.6L engine mounted to a 6-speed automatic transmission. Its power and torque are 234kW/460Nm respectively.

Its body weight is 2,720kg, and since this is a super heavy type of car that would exceed 3 tons when it reaches the maximum capacity of passengers allotted, it’s given that it has a high power performance. Even though it somehow makes me want to have it equipped with diesel with excellent torque performance, the engine it currently uses already guarantees the necessary running performance.

The sound of its engine is not particularly pleasant, but it achieves a tight acceleration feel when driving powerfully with its heavy body. This acceleration feel is just right for this car.

Its ride quality is not particularly pleasant. It clearly makes you feel the vibration due to the effect of its framed body structure. When I test drove the 200 right after it was debuted, it was remarkably more amazing than the 100. Nevertheless, although I remember the feeling that it had a better ride quality as an automobile, I regrettably felt its oldness when I drove it once again this time.

The running performance and ride quality of other cars are becoming better, so the car’s ‘accommodation value’ is becoming expensive nowadays. Yet its level of quietness achieves the level that would make you think of it as the Crown and other luxury cars.

The base price of the Land Cruiser 200 ZX exceeded 6.8 million yen, but the car that I test drove has an option setting with a price of around 1.2 million yen, totaling up to over 8 million yen. This pricing is just right for a luxury 4WD off-road vehicle.

â– 5 Star Rating
Packaging: ★★★
Interior / Comfort: ★★★★★
Power Source: ★★★★
Footwork: ★★★
Recommendation: ★★★

Hiroshi Matsushita | Car Critic

Born in 1951 in Maebashi, Gunma Prefecture. Former journalist for the car industry and editor of a car magazine, now a freelancer. Known for his strengths in economic discussions on cars and money, such as tax, insurance, and various expenses. Writes an online diary.

(Translated by Claire Marie Sausora)