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What the hell are you thinking! Why is everyone rushing out to buy to the Toyota Land Cruiser 200 Series? | Opinion

Another big month for the Toyota LandCruiser 200 Series.

Another month, another stunning sales result for the Toyota LandCruiser 200 Series, which is now defying everything from economic uncertainty to logic to post some of the best sales results this ageing icon has ever seen.

And none of that is all that newsworthy; the 200 Series has been on an absolute run over the past 12 months, fuelled by more Australians holidaying at home, and by fans of the brand snapping up what we know will be the last example of Toyota's 4.5-litre twin-turbo V8 diesel engine.

It's not just new cars, either. While anecdotal evidence points to some dealers making hay when the sun shines when it comes to LC200 pricing, the same can be said of the used-car market, where sellers are demanding some big numbers in return for a used LandCruiser.

In fact, CarsGuide has been told that some people are paying inflated dealer prices for a new LC200, only to turn around and list it on the used-car market for even more money, such is the frenzy surrounding this model.

This kind of madness is usually reserved for the property market, not new cars - and especially not for new cars that aren't that new.

But this May just gone? It was something else. Some 2795 examples of the LC200 found homes last month (granted, that includes some 70 Series sales), which was the nameplate's best result so far in 2021 - which has been a year already filled with strong results.

Remember, the LC200 recorded 2595 sales in April, 2244 in March,1326 in February and 1499 in January. That's a total of 10,459 sales this year - almost double what the model had achieved to this point in 2020, 2019 and 2018.

And here's the weirdest bit: the LC200 launched in Australia back in 2007, and in the first five months of 2008 (its first full year on sale) only 5275 vehicles were sold. Which means the LC200 is twice as popular in 2021 than it was when it was actually a new car. What the hell is going on?

Most of that can be explained away through the impacts of the Coronavirus on international travel, and by the fact the LC200 is rightly considered an icon of reliability and capability, and is one of the few vehicles left using a big and powerful V8 diesel engine.

But we also now know that a new LandCruiser - the 300 Series - is now just days away from its unveiling, with Toyota confirming it will reveal the new model on June 10 (at about 3.30am local time). And sure as night follows day, it will be launching in Australia this year.

It will retain a diesel engine - a 3.3-litre V6 twin-turbo-diesel that's slightly smaller but more powerful than the V8 it replaces - and leaked documents have shown it will match the LC200's other critical numbers, with a braked towing rating of 3500kg, an unbraked figure of 750kg, and ground clearance, approach and departure angles that match those of the LC200 model, to "inherit its off-road drive-ability", too.

It will also be very much a "new" vehicle, with all the technology, safety equipment, and convenience that goes along with it, including a new TNGA platform focused on increasing capability, while still delivering on-road comfort.

And yet here we are, a handful of sleeps away from seeing the new model, and a vehicle that first launched in Australia in 2007 is having one of its best years on record.

That's not often the case. Usually, manufacturers will offer all sorts of run-out discounts in an effort to clear stock before a new and more attractive model arrives. But the LC200 is the exact opposite. Forget run-out sales, prices - and demand - are only increasing.

But if we've learned anything from the bubbling cauldron that is our property market, a boom comes before a slump.

So the question is, will the customers who paid overs for an LC200 in 2021, some 14 years after it first launched in Australia, be left feeling stung when a newer, likely better and undoubtedly more technologically advanced model appears just months later?

Only time will tell.

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