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2024 Toyota Prado: The good, bad and ugly of the new baby LandCruiser 300 Series

Toyota's new Prado is coming soon, but is it a worthwhile upgrade over the old one?

The new Toyota LandCruiser Prado has been revealed and, sort of, detailed and suffice to say people are pretty bloody excited.

No longer the stuff of mere concepts and imaginings, the Prado has been witnessed, in the metal, fully realised, and its arrival was accompanied by a bare minimum of facts and figures about it, but with more than one or two generous helpings of Toyota hyperbole.

Happily, with what we've been able to glean from the unveiling, the news around the new Prado seems to be mostly good.

It looks to be the much-needed and long-awaited reboot the Prado really needs, with a look and size set to rival that of its big brother stablemate, the LandCruiser 300 Series.

But, at the moment, with that smattering of details Toyota has released so far, speculation is rife, and rumours are still swirling about regarding what engines we'll get in Australia etc, so in this yarn we're going to spell out what we know, and what's good and what's bad about the new Toyota LandCruiser Prado.

The good

It looks like Australia will get the new Toyota LandCruiser Prado with only one powertrain at launch – the existing 2.8-litre, four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine (150kW and 500Nm) with a 48-volt mild hybrid system – while buyers in other markets can choose from several petrol, diesel and hybrid options (more about that below).

It'd be nice to have a bit more choice in terms of what powertrain to buy, but that engine, shared with the upcoming HiLux, has decent outputs and will hopefully yield positives in terms of fuel consumption – Toyota reckons it will. It's matched to an eight-speed automatic transmission, and the Prado has a full-time four-wheel-drive system.

More strikingly, is the fact the new five- or seven-seat Prado has changed dramatically from the current-gen Prado in a big way, inside and out. It has a blockier retro-style exterior – replete with a grille dominated by an all-caps “TOYOTA”, big wheelarches plus classic squared-off edges everywhere – and the interior is now geared up with a big centrally-positioned multimedia screen, a digital driver display, and a contemporary, plush cabin.

The new Toyota LandCruiser Prado has been revealed and, sort of, detailed and suffice to say people are pretty bloody excited.

It's now based on the same TGNA-F underpinnings as the 300 Series, which Toyota reckons makes the new body-on-frame LandCruiser Prado 50 per cent more rigid than the current Prado and that it has a 30 per cent increase in overall rigidity.

The next-generation Prado – called the 250 Series in some markets – is said to be 4920mm long, 1988mm wide and 1860mm high, and so it is bigger than the current-gen Prado in all those measurements.

Its wheelbase has stretched 60mm longer than the current-gen Prado's, so it is now the same length (2850mm) as the 300 Series'.

With what we’ve been able to glean from the unveiling, the news around the new Prado seems to be mostly good.

Toyota also reckons the new Prado will have improved Multi-Terrain Select drive modes, Crawl Control mode, a Multi-Terrain monitor, increased wheel articulation, and, for the first time in a Toyota, a swaybar disconnect function.

The next-gen Prado will also have new electric power steering – aimed at improving low-speed manoeuvrability while 4WDing – and more driver-assist tech including lane trace assist.

The bad

At this point in time, it looks like we'll unfortunately miss out on the most powerful engine option, the US-spec Prado's 2.4-litre turbo-petrol hybrid that produces 243kW and 630Nm.

We'll also miss out on other powertrains being offered onboard the Prado elsewhere, including a 2.4-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol (207kW/430Nm), a 2.4-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol-electric hybrid (243kW/630Nm), a 2.8-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel (150kW/500Nm) without the mild-hybrid system, and a 2.7-litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder petrol engine (120kW/246Nm).

At this point in time, it looks like we’ll unfortunately miss out on the most powerful engine option.

It looks like we won't get the Prados with the rounded, retro-style headlights either; we get the rectangular grille and squared-off headlights.

Towing capacity on the US equivalent of the new Prado is listed as 2722kg – but the towing capacity figure for Australia's Prados was not available at time of writing.

The ugly(?)

The new Toyota LandCruiser Prado will launch in Australia with 2024. For some of us, that's just too damn long to wait.

It’s bigger, more premium and better equipped all-round than ever before.

What I reckon

The upcoming Prado looks cool, is well overdue for a reboot and the engine's nothing to get upset about – and at least the hybrids seem like a definite step in the right direction anyway.

It's bigger, more premium and better equipped all-round than ever before and, by the sounds of Toyota's tooting, this new Prado will be even better off-road.

Sure, it'd be nice to have other powertrain choices but … you get what you get, and you don't get upset.

I'm looking forward to driving this.

Marcus Craft
Contributing Journalist
Raised by dingoes and, later, nuns, Marcus (aka ‘Crafty’) had his first taste of adventure as a cheeky toddler on family 4WD trips to secret fishing spots near Bundaberg, Queensland....
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