The incoming LandCruiser 300 Series could get even tougher in Australia, with the brand eyeing local upgrades courtesy of its new Centre of Excellence in Victoria that could see Rugged X or Rouge versions of the iconic SUV.
News this week broke internationally that the new LC300's diesel V6 will produce monstrous outputs dwarfing those even of the LC200's diesel V8.
The Japanese media has been hard at work sniffing out the details of the LC300, with Creative 311 quoting dealer sources who have reportedly leaked the outputs of the new V6 diesel engine that was first reported in CarsGuide.
According to those reports, the new 3.3-litre diesel engine will produce a whopping 230kW and 687Nm, paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission.
The current LC200, for reference, is fitted with a bigger V8 diesel, but produces 200kW and 650Nm.
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But that's not where the story ends this week, with Toyota's senior management pointing to the expansion of its Centre of Excellence - the facility where the Toyota HiLux Rugged X and Rogue took shape - could also get to work on the new LandCruiser.
Asked whether the LC300 would be in-line for homegrown editions like with the Toyota HiLux, Toyota's VP of sales and marketing, Sean Hanley, replied: Our Toyota Conversion capability will no doubt expand, that’s why we've got it, and that’s why we’re continuing to develop our skillset, capability and capacity in that area."
The Toyota Conversion centre has recently expanded and shifted to the brand's Centre of Excellence in Altona.
The news follows earlier statements from Toyota Australia, suggesting even a LandCruiser GR or GR Sport model could be produced Down Under.
"We’ve never ruled out any model having a GR model if it makes sense," a spokesperson has told CarsGuide.
"We have an assembly facility here, and there’s no reason we couldn’t do something."
Australia is already "intrinsically involved" in the LC300's development, says Toyota, and so trusting the local engineering team to produce special editions would make sense.
“We have Altona Vehicle Evaluation section within TMCA (Toyota Australia), and TMC (Toyota Japan) works intrinsically and closely with our group in the development of any off-road vehicles,” says Rod Ferguson, Toyota Australia’s General Manager of Product Planning and Development.
“That’s where we have the confidence to say that the vehicle testing and vehicle suitability - whether it’s towing or off-road performance - will be there in any product we release.
“Our team is intrinsically involved in what we call development - and development is the feedback of testing something, improving it, that’s development - and that’s what gives us confidence.
“The Australian environment is an intrinsic part of developing those vehicles.”