Toyota Land Cruiser Review 2024

Toyota Land Cruiser At A Glance

3/5

+Big and tough. Good off road and good for towing. Excellent reliability record. You feel invincible.

-Expensive to buy and run. Old-fashioned to drive on the road. High boot floor.

Insurance Groups are between 31–48
On average it achieves 76% of the official MPG figure

The Toyota Land Cruiser isn’t as plush or fancy as a Land Rover Discovery. Yet its blend of huge size, impregnable reliability and serious off-road capability make it a strong proposition for a select few. Namely those who need their car to cope year-round in remote areas and hostile weather conditions.

Only one engine choice is offered – originally a 3.0-litre D-4D it was replaced by a more economical 2.8-litre diesel in 2015. This has slightly less power with 177PS and 450Nm of torque, but is effective, albeit gruff, producing plenty of shove low down the rev range. Most variants have an auto as standard, but basic Utility versions come with a manual gearbox as standard. Official economy is just short of 40mpg with either.

For driving over challenging terrain, the Land Cruiser is very impressive indeed. Downhill assist, ride height control, a crawl function and a limited slip differential are among the off road features.

Unfortunately, its off-road prowess translates to lacklustre on road driving, with spongy suspension and ponderous steering. Driving a Land Cruiser requires a certain mindset and, if you're happy to wander along at 60mph on the motorway, it can be quite enjoyable in the same vein as a Land Rover Defender or Suzuki Jimny.

You sit high up with a commanding view, and everyone treats the Land Cruiser with respect. Visibility's pretty good, apart from when you're reversing, but that's what parking sensors (standard on Active models and up) are for.

Buyers get a choice of three- or five-door body styles. The appeal of the three-door is very limited though, especially when you consider the fact the five-door variant has two extra seats that fold up from the boot floor. The boot itself is large but very high off the ground, making it difficult to load heavy objects.

Most SUV buyers are better catered for elsewhere. German alternatives such as the Audi Q7 and BMW X5 are much, much nicer to drive with and easier to live with day-to-day if you don't wish to venture off road, while the Land Rover Discovery does a better job of combining mud-plugging ability with car-like dynamics.

If you're looking for a 4x4 that's more of a workhorse than a Chelsea Tractor, the Land Cruiser makes sense. Some of the interior finish is almost unforgivable for an SUV that can cost well over £50,000, but it's extremely competent off road and boasts a legendary reliability record.

Toyota Land Cruiser 2010 Road Test and Video

Real MPG average for a Toyota Land Cruiser

RealMPG

Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance

76%

Real MPG

20–37 mpg

MPGs submitted

89

Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

Satisfaction Index

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Ask Honest John

I need to replace two SUVs with a single 4x4 with a large boot, what would you suggest?

"Currently I drive a 2005 Mitsubishi Shogun Sport 2.5 TD with 120,000 miles on the clock and my wife a 2002 2.0 Suzuki Grand Vitara which has done nearly 200,000 miles. We are both in our late 60s and soon we will need to replace the two with one vehicle of similar characteristics. The only two must haves are 4WD and a fairly large boot to carry up to four bales of hay. Last year we clocked 15,000 between the two. We would like this to be our last "New" car, which hopefully will last us at least 15 years. We live in a very rural situation and our longest single journey is 335 miles, which we do no more than twice a year, otherwise it's just local errands driving 50 miles return trips. What do you suggest?"
There are a few options to choose from, but it does depend on your budget. If your budget can stretch to it we would suggest looking at a Toyota Land Cruiser. They're big, tough, very reliable and extremely capable off road. Used examples with relatively low mileage are available from around £8,000 but we've seen examples comfortably pass 200,000 miles. Alternatives could include the larger Mitsubishi Shogun, Nissan X-Trail and the Hyundai Santa Fe.
Answered by David Ross

Should I replace by 9 year old Toyota Land Cruiser or keep it?

"I have a 2014 Toyota Land Cruiser Invincible with 90k (bought about 3 years ago). They are claimed to be reliable am I better holding on to it and 'running it into the ground' or should I regularly trade in and renew? I could never afford a new one so it would only be buying a newer one. What is the logic of buying a super reliable car if you just replace it every three years? I use it off road and it is used as a workhorse as would any replacements so their trade in value isn't going to be 'top end'. My concern is I feel it is trade it in now or hold in for the long term. I do about 12k a year in it."
If you're happy with the car, hold onto it. Land Cruisers aren't really typical three-year PCP fodder - most people buy them and keep them for a long time. It should prove to be reliable in the long-term, provided you don't scrimp on servicing. It might be worth investing in some extra rust protection if you're planning to keep it long-term - especially as you use it off road.
Answered by Andrew Brady

What's the best vehicle for towing a horse box?

"I need your advice for the most suitable towing vehicle for a horse box (with two horses). I need something that will be able to tow 3000kg to 3500kg. What would you recommend used please? My budget is £20,000."
A SsangYong Rexton could be a good choice - it's a very popular tow car thanks to its 3500kg towing capacity. You'll also get a much newer one for your money compared to premium alternatives. We'd also recommend a Toyota Land Cruiser - although its reputation for being indestructible means values are very strong.
Answered by Andrew Brady

Can you recommend a 4x4 for towing?

"I need a car with 4wd in order to tow glider trailers out of farmer's muddy field. However, most of the driving will be on ordinary road so I need the option of 2wd. The Suzuki Jimny has 2wd/ 4wd high and low ratio and a 4wd high ratio with locked differentials and so fits the bill. However, it is small, noisy and under powered. I had a Toyota Rav 4 with supposedly 4wd but it got stuck towing a trailer in the snow. Can you advise which cars have the proper 4wd, (like the Jimny) and could pull a 2000kg glider trailer or a 4 berth caravan with a bit of comfort and could still get through mud and snow? I am looking for an automatic, second hand car with a maximum of 30,000 miles. Budget of less than £20,000. Any ideas? I am happy to consider a plug-in hybrid if it can tow. "
You will struggle to find a 'proper' 4x4 with selectable ratios and locking differentials in budget. All small-to-midsize SUVs have moved to a more economy-biased selectable all-wheel drive system. Other than the Jimny pretty much all of them are large SUVs or pick-up trucks that cost a bit more. That said, have you checked out the latest SsangYong Rexton? It's a proper 4x4 with plenty of SUV comfort and an automatic gearbox. There's also the Mitsubishi Shogun (very old-school but spacious and affordable) and the Toyota Land Cruiser (over-budget but probably the best proper 4x4 around). For pick-ups we'd be looking at the Mitsubishi L200 or Ford Ranger.
Answered by Lawrence Allan
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