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Toyota's $50k off-road bargain! New Toyota LandCruiser FJ to be half the price of an LC300 and way cheaper than a Prado: Reports

The LandCruiser FJ could prove a bargain (Image: Thanos Pappas)

A mini Toyota LandCruiser – expected to be called the LandCruiser FJ – could prove to be the brand's biggest off-road bargain. New reports suggest the incoming model will be priced lower than the current-generation Fortuner in international markets.

The Fortuner is the SUV version of the Toyota HiLux, sharing all of its underpinnings with the popular ute, and is priced at just over $50,000 in our market.

If the reports prove accurate, and Toyota Australia applies the same pricing strategy here, then the LandCruiser FJ could start at about $50k here, which would make it roughly half the price of the cheapest LandCruiser 300 Series, which starts at about $98,000.

Toyota has already trademarked the name "LandCruiser FJ" in Australia, with the paperwork lodged with the Federal Government back in March. That move only added weight to reports out of Japan that the Mini LandCruiser would be named the FJ.

But while the word "mini" seemingly won't appear in the LandCruiser's official name, it will absolutely apply to its dimensions, with the diminutive 4WD expected to stretch just 4.5m in length, 1.8m in width and 1.8m in height – giving it a similar footprint to the Toyota Corolla Cross

Also expected is a petrol-hybrid powertrain borrowed from the RAV4, which could see the LandCruiser FJ fitted with a 2.5-litre petrol-hybrid making a combined 163kW and 227Nm, and delivering a 1500kg towing capacity, with power fed to all four wheels.

That said, recent reports from India suggest the hybrid won't be offered to all markets, and a 2.7-litre petrol engine will also be made available, producing 120KW and 250Nm – though given the immense popularity of hybrids in our market, the petrol-only option would be a long shot.

While Toyota in Australia is yet to officially comment on a LandCruiser FJ, the company's sales and marketing chief, Sean Hanley, has said that the brand "hasn't been sitting still" when it comes to expanding the LandCruiser badge more generally.

"We've had no dialogue about those vehicles in Australia at this point," Mr Hanley said.

“But from a conceptual perspective, we're very excited and it just again shows that the company hasn't been sitting still. It's actually busy looking at alternatives and we'd welcome any opportunity to bring those types of vehicles to this market.

“So all of these things now will become more real and more visible in the future, I think.”

Reports point to the LandCruiser FJ being unveiled towards the end of 2024, ahead of a H2 2025 on-sale date.

For now, though, you'll have to watch this space.

Andrew Chesterton
Contributing Journalist
Andrew Chesterton should probably hate cars. From his hail-damaged Camira that looked like it had spent a hard life parked at the end of Tiger Woods' personal driving range, to the Nissan Pulsar Reebok that shook like it was possessed by a particularly mean-spirited demon every time he dared push past 40km/h, his personal car history isn't exactly littered with gold. But that seemingly endless procession of rust-savaged hate machines taught him something even more important; that cars are more than a collection of nuts, bolts and petrol. They're your ticket to freedom, a way to unlock incredible experiences, rolling invitations to incredible adventures. They have soul. And so, somehow, the car bug still bit. And it bit hard. When "Chesto" started his journalism career with News Ltd's Sunday and Daily Telegraph newspapers, he covered just about everything, from business to real estate, courts to crime, before settling into state political reporting at NSW Parliament House. But the automotive world's siren song soon sounded again, and he begged anyone who would listen for the opportunity to write about cars. Eventually they listened, and his career since has seen him filing car news, reviews and features for TopGear, Wheels, Motor and, of course, CarsGuide, as well as many, many others. More than a decade later, and the car bug is yet to relinquish its toothy grip. And if you ask Chesto, he thinks it never will.
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