Vijay Pattni02 September 2013

It’s the new Toyota Land Cruiser*!

*Sort of. Indestructible 4x4 gets a facelift and engine/suspension upgrades…

Live two weeks away from a water supply surrounded by angry crocodiles? Meet your new car. It's the new-for-2014 (read: facelifted) Toyota Land Cruiser. A car we'll probably see in a Top Gear special at some point in the future...

Because it's such a trusted companion to those in the world's hottest of spots, Toyota has applied but a sliver of revision to its venerable off roader. First up, it comes with a new face; a more prominent grille, new headlight clusters and daytime running lights, and an oversized bumper.

There are new rear lamp clusters and 17in/18in wheels, while the wheelbase and rear overhangs remain the same. Overall length has crept up a smidge, so on the whole, it's still ruddy enormous.

Some attention has been lavished on the interior too, in a bid to up the ‘perceived quality' - long a bugbear for the LC. There's a new centre console switch panel (to select the drive modes), a 4.2in TFT colour screen, a new look speedo and rev counter, brushed metal finishes, wood grain, and upgraded seat upholstery, the latter handy for when zealous militia bear down on you.

Then there's the engine. The 3.0-litre four-pot diesel has been revised to meet Euro 5+ emissions, but, unfortunately, gets zero additional power. So it's the same, slightly weedy 188bhp and 309lb ft of torque, for a 0-62mph time of 10.2 seconds (3dr) or 11s (five-door).

Toyota has ‘optimised' the standard suspension's damper settings, while the ‘kinetic dynamic suspension system' featured on high-trim models gets thicker anti-roll bars, amongst other things, we're promised.

Prices to be confirmed closer to its on sale date next year, but largely it remains an indestructible thing off-road. Trouble is, the Land Rover Discovery exists, and that's better on-road too...

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