Toyota is building on the 50-year heritage of its FJ Cruiser 4×4 by dipping into its historic paint palette for the 2014 model year.
A new colour called Retro Blue is based on the original blue paint used for the vehicle that inspired the FJ Cruiser – Toyota’s famed LandCruiser FJ40 which was sold in Australia during the 1960s, 70s and early 80s.
The modern FJ Cruiser, available in six other colours, also gains newly designed 17-inch seven-spoke alloy wheels with the latest upgrade.
Toyota’s “go anywhere, do anything” FJ Cruiser maintains a loyal following with almost 7,000 sold here since the model was introduced in 2011.
Local sales are running at more than twice Toyota’s projections – an average of more than 200 a month since launch compared with the original forecast of around 100 a month.
Toyota Australia’s executive director sales and marketing Tony Cramb said FJ Cruiser’s success is due to its off-road prowess, suitability for everyday driving and flexibility for all types of activities.
“Motoring enthusiasts love the FJ Cruiser because it inherits the DNA and pays homage to several of the most compelling stylistic themes of the original LandCruiser FJ40,” Mr Cramb said.
“They also appreciate the FJ Cruiser being simple and rugged with the ability to traverse tough terrain and deliver full-scale off-road driving performance.”
Toyota engineered the FJ Cruiser for serious off-road driving capability with Australian engineers playing a leading role in developing the ride and handling to meet the demands of local drivers and conditions.
The calibration of the vehicle’s shock absorbers and power steering were retuned to meet requirements for a sporty ride and sharp handling on bitumen while retaining a pliant ride in off-road conditions.
Improvements to reduce noise, vibration and harshness, now adopted globally, were prompted by Australia’s coarse-chip road surfaces.
FJ Cruiser’s ladder-frame chassis provides the stable platform for the long-travel all-coil suspension and the vehicle’s off-road credentials. The vehicle has high-mounted double-wishbone independent front suspension and a five-link solid rear axle system.
The hydraulic power-assisted rack and pinion steering has a variable gear-ratio steering rack to provide the optimal steering weighting, for greater ease when parking and direct response at highway speeds.
The latest version’s redesigned alloy wheels sport 265/70R tyres for optimum ground clearance and off-road capability.
FJ Cruiser has a powerful and responsive DOHC 4.0-litre V6 petrol engine that incorporates dual independent variable valve timing with intelligence (variable phasing for both the intake and exhaust cams).
The 200kW, 380Nm engine is driven through a five-speed automatic transmission. FJ Cruiser features part-time 4×4, an electrically activated rear differential lock and switchable active traction control technology.
It features impressive clearance – a 31-degree departure angle and 29-degree break-over angle are the best for any vehicle in Toyota’s local 4WD range. Its approach angle of 36 degrees is bettered only by the 70 Series. Ground clearance is 224mm.
The FJ Cruiser’s comprehensive standard safety package provides six airbags, including front seat-mounted side airbags and roll-sensing side curtain airbags for both rows of seats.
Vehicle stability control, anti-skid brakes with brake assist and electronic brakeforce distribution, active headrests for the front seats, and a reversing camera are standard.
The thoroughly modern FJ Cruiser borrows design cues from the FJ40 and updates the classic theme in a contemporary way.
Exterior features inspired by the original FJ40 include its angular lines, front grille with round headlights, upright windscreen with three wiper blades and the rear-mounted and exposed full-size spare tyre.
The FJ Cruiser is also functional with side access doors that open 90 degrees in clamshell fashion for easy access to the rear seat.
At the rear, a swing-up glass hatch opens independently of the side-hinged tailgate, making it easier to store or retrieve items from the luggage area.
FJ Cruiser has CRAWL Control^ for added off-road driving competence plus fuel capacity of 159 litres for an extended driving range. On the combined cycle, the FJ Cruiser uses 11.4 litres/100km* for a notional range of almost 1,400km.
Offered in a single grade with a high level of specification, the FJ Cruiser remains priced from $47,990**. Metallic paint is $475 extra.
FJ Cruiser is covered by Toyota Service Advantage capped-price servicing at a maximum of $210 per service.