Honest confession: I love traveling and off-roading as much as the next person, but I’m the type of adventurer who also craves luxury. Put it this way, my idea of camping is probably not in line with the strictest definition of the term. Compared to others, I doubt that I really know what “roughing it” actually entails.
So, I am beyond thrilled to introduce you to the brand new 2016 Toyota Land Cruiser, the refined adventurer, coming soon to your local Toyota dealership, though not soon enough for my impatient nature.
Here is my next anticipated adventure…
The 2016 Toyota Land Cruiser – Luxury Is Coming in for a Landing
The Land Cruiser has been a part of the American automotive landscape for nearly sixty years.
So, what will make the new Toyota tick?
Well to start, the 2016 Land Cruiser will be equipped with a 5.7-liter DOHC V8 engine with Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i), able to generate 381 horsepower and 401 lb.-ft. of torque at 3,600 rpm.
In addition to such power, this Toyota can really tow, with a maximum towing capacity rated at 8,500 pounds, thanks in part to the fact that the V8 gets ninety percent of peak torque at just 2,200 rpm.
With the Trailer Towing Package, drivers have all they need, like an engine oil cooler, connector, and sub-wiring harness to help with trailer-brake control. Using Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), the Land Cruiser rejects trailer sway, making towing a smoother, more accessible function.
The six-speed automatic transmission currently operating the Cruiser has been upgraded to a brand new eight-speed automatic transmission, which offers a greater ratio range for better acceleration and fuel economy. A driver-selected manual option is available for greater control behind the wheel.
When it comes to fuel efficiency, let’s be honest…No SUV has ever really been celebrated for outstanding efficiency at the gas tank. The EPA rates the 2016 Toyota Land Cruiser at 13 city mpg, 18 highway mpg, for an estimated combined 15 mpg.
Cruising Off the Beaten Path
As fall approaches, should you find yourself in the throes of a Robert Frost-inspired moment, go ahead and take that road less traveled, knowing that the 2016 Land Cruiser can get you there and back without hesitation.
How does it do this?
The secret is in the revised suspension, which is made possible by the Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System (KDSS), a hydraulic operation that shifts the resistance from the stabilizer bars, protecting the vehicle from any potential wheel lift.
When it comes to off-road maneuverability, the 2016 Land Cruiser boasts an approach angle of thirty degrees, with a departure angle measured at 20 degrees.
If you happen to travel on more familiar (paved) roads, the KDSS helps decrease body lean by up to fifty percent.
Forging the Way with Four-Wheel Drive
Except this particular four-wheel drive puts the other, same-segment, four-wheel drive systems to shame. Using a TORSEN limited-slip locking center differential, the Land Cruiser’s torque is measured at 40:60 front to back.
On icy or otherwise slippery surfaces, the TORSEN differential can deliver additional torque to those wheels which have the most solid, firmest grip on the road.
Extra support on steep grades comes from the low-range two-speed transfer case, complemented by a Multi-terrain Select driver’s system, affording the driver the ability to pair the slip control to changing or challenging driving conditions.
Settings on the Multi-terrain Select include mud, sand, and mogul, which, when engaged, perform similarly to a limited slip differential.
With the improved Multi-Terrain Monitor, drivers can choose front, side, or rear views, complete with practically 360-degree visibility, along with a five-second front undercarriage projected path video playback.
If you slide the transfer case into low range, CRAWL Control monitors the speed and output of the engine, as well as the Land Cruiser’s braking power, so that the driver can move the vehicle forward or backwards by activating any of the five possible driver-selectable low-speed settings. CRAWL Control takes care of the throttle and brake pedals, leaving the driver to worry only about steering. You know? The fun part!
Other trailblazing tweaks come from Downhill Assist Control (DAC), keeping the vehicle at a particular speed when descending without much help needed from the driver. Hill-Start Assist Control (HAC) stops you from rolling backwards if you need to come to a stop on a steep or slippery grade.
What about those tight, tree-crowded curves on the trail?
Fortunately, the Off-Road Turn Assist helps the Land Cruiser pivot around turns after narrowing the turning radius and sending brake pressure to the inside back wheel. All-terrain, or really any terrain, is possible in the 2016 Toyota Land Cruiser, owing in part to these systems, and also the mud and snow P285/60 R18 tires wrapped around 18 x 8-inch aluminum alloy wheels.
Not to worry, there is a spare tire as standard equipment, the condition of which you’ll never question thanks to the Cruiser’s direct individual tire pressure monitor system.
Checking Out the Cruiser’s Exterior
The 2016 Land Cruiser is sporting a significant redesign, showcasing new light-tube designed taillights, LED brake lights, and chrome molding, set off by a revamped bumper, all poised to challenge the competition on 18-inch alloy wheels.
Though it’s a superficial concern, compared to the specs, let’s face it, the fun part is picking out the color.
For the 2016 exterior palette, shades include: Blizzard Pearl, Blue Onyx Pearl, Brandywine Mica, Classic Silver Metallic, Magnetic Gray Metallic, and Midnight Black Metallic.
Luxury Lives in the 2016 Land Cruiser…Thank Goodness
And rings out in a wealth of bells and whistles, just a few of which I’ll share here…
First of all, since you know your exterior color options, consider your favorite based on the two interior color choices: Black or Terra, which is a rich brown hue.
Let’s see, this three-row SUV has perforated leather trim, a four-zone automatic climate control system, Optitron instrument gauges, heated and ventilated front seats, complemented by a heated steering wheel with power tilt-and-telescoping memory, power moonroof, Smart Key keyless entry that activates by the push of a button, automatic dimming reariew and side mirrors, an anti-theft security system with engine immobilizer, and HomeLink universal garage-door opener.
With the Multi-Information Display, drivers can monitor fuel usage, tire pressures, odometer, and gear selection, among other functions. In addition, you get parking guidance from the parking assist system, as well as safety alerts like Lane Departure, Pre-Collision, and Sway Warning.
The rear seats 40/20/20 split makes accessing any of the backseats a cinch.
Cargo space is ample, measured at 81.7 cubic feet, plenty of room for us weekend warrior-types, who travel with a week’s worth of luggage. Okay, maybe a month. A girl’s gotta be prepared…
Whoever is appointed deejay on said roadtrip will have a blast (get it?) with the JBLS Synthesis Premium Audio with Entune, concert-hall quality speakers. Speaking of music, you can access your jams via the AM/FM CD player, MP3 system, SiriusXM All Access Satellite Radio, HD Radio with iTunes, or connect your iPod to the USB port, or sync it up to the Land Cruiser’s Bluetooth capability.
For those traveling in the back, the rear-seat DVD entertainment system, broadcast on two personal 11.6-inch displays, will be a hit.
Okay, so much for a “few” bells and whistles…the 2016 Toyota Land Cruiser is set to resound like a full-blown orchestra.
Gosh, all of this Land Cruiser research leaves me with just one question: How soon can I go “camping?”
According to Toyota, I’ll have to wait until late 2016, which gives me time to squirrel away $70,000, the starting MSRP for the 2016 Toyota Land Cruiser.
No matter how you define “roughing it,” whether it’s on truly rugged terrain or the Radisson’s rich thread count, you can’t resist the 2016 Toyota Land Cruiser’s suggestion: “Let’s Go Places.”