Toyota Land Cruiser: Unsinkable Off-Road Cruiser
The Toyota Land Cruiser-100 has been produced since 1998 and is still in great demand in Russia. And it is not surprising: after all, by the totality of the qualities of the “weaving” it still remains, perhaps, the best heavy all-terrain vehicle. And, as experience shows, for the secondary market, “Land Cruiser” is also good.
In the category of prestigious off-road vehicles, the predilections of our customers are not the same. In the mid-1990s, the people admired Range Rover, then Gelendewagen became a hit, after it BMW-X5, and today Cayenne has mastered the bohemian minds.
And each time with the advent of the new icon, the old idols begin to rapidly lose fans. But here is a paradox. Land-Cruiser-100 has been present on the market for 5 years and has been steadily at the top of the popularity ratings all this time. And last year, “weaving” in general became the best-selling all-terrain vehicle in Russia. Why do they love her so much?
First of all, for the perfect balance of consumer qualities. In the “honeycomb” “Cruiser” harmoniously combines high comfort, excellent driving properties, as well as excellent maneuverability and endurance. All of them, raised to the maximum degree, are separately present in many models, but in the aggregate – in none. Say, “Gelendevagen” is great on the roads, but for comfort and driving properties – a truck truck. “X-Fifth” is very comfortable, fast and agile on asphalt, but it is better not to turn off a good road. “Land Cruiser” is at a very high level in all nominations.
Car interior has excellent ergonomics and meticulously worked out in detail. For example, the sun visors are double, the CD changer is not installed in the trunk, but at hand, between the front seats, the gap between the folded tailgate and the body covers the plastic flap. Of such little things, and there is a general favorable image of the car. Riding comfort and good handling are ensured by smoothness, independent front suspension and rack steering. However, the “weaving” has a good cross due to a powerful downshift in “razdatka”, decent ground clearance and locking two differentials – center and rear axle.
Here, however, it is worth making a reservation that all of the above applies only to the most expensive version of the VX, equipped with a V8 petrol engine or a turbo diesel engine, independent front suspension and richly equipped velor or leather interior. This is the most popular modification of the “weave”.
In addition, there are two more utilitarian modifications STD (standard) and GX, which were sold only in Russia and third world countries. Structurally, they are so different from the VX that they are essentially an independent model – the “hundredth” body mounted on the chassis of the previous Land-Cruiser-80. Unpretentious engines – aspirated diesel or in-line gasoline “six” and, most importantly, a strong dependent suspension of the front wheels. All this suggests that the STD and GX are designed to work permanently in heavy traffic conditions. The only difference is that STD is quite utilitarian. Its easy-to-clean vinyl interior without any electrics is best suited for “dirty” work. Of the benefits of civilization in the STD can only be air conditioning. In the GX, the interior is already woven, the floor is carpeted, and the mirrors and glass are electrically operated.
But if in the “collective farm” STD, which needs maximum throughput, for some reason there is only a center differential lock, then in the most expensive version of the GX there are additionally locks of both cross-axle differentials – rear and front. On the cross with such a machine is unlikely anyone would argue. So, if shod in the “toothy” GX rubber with all the locks on, sits firmly in the middle of the muddy field, you need to go behind the tractor. Because like any other SUV, most likely, will not even be able to get close to the stuck car.
Naturally, the STD and GX can not be required as high comfort and as good driving qualities as from the VX. They have a diesel engine that is much less powerful, and in terms of handling they are not far from the Gelendewagen.
Eight or ten places?
Versions VX and STD / GX also differ in the number of seats in the cabin. Top-modification VX has an 8-seater saloon, where the third 3-seater seat row is located, like the first two, in the direction of travel. For the sake of cheaper prices, STD / GX options were delivered by Russian dealers in a 10-seater version and cleared as buses. They have the right passenger seat formally 2-seater, and in the trunk along the sides there are two 2-seater benches. With such a cabin layout, it is easier to sit on the rear benches through the fifth door. Therefore, it is made swing sideways, not up / down, as in the VX version. In this case, the desire of dealers to save on customs turns out that the owner of the car must have a bus category D in the rights. Or it is necessary to dismantle at least one shop and get a category change in the PTS through an authorized for such alterations.