Toyota announces the current-generation Land Cruiser is dead after 2021
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Toyota confirmed a rumor that we first got wind in 2020 by announcing that the current generation Land Cruiser will be retiring after the 2021 model year. The next generation model will be rolled out in the coming months, but we're getting mixed signals on whether the nameplate will return to the US.
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The Land Cruiser of the J200 generation, which was launched in 2007 as a 2008 model and has been updated twice since then (picture), is about to enter the market for the 14th time. It's a senior by industry standards, so its decline isn't surprising, 2 million units this year.
"The Land Cruiser has been a legendary name for more than 60 years. While it will be discontinued in the US after the 2021 model year, we remain committed to the large SUV segment and will continue to explore future products that celebrate the Land Cruiser." We encourage loyal enthusiasts and intrepid adventurers to stay tuned for future developments, "Toyota said in a statement sent to Road & Track.
Deciphering a automaker's message often requires reading between the lines, and understanding Toyota's blurb is no exception. It is important to note that "future products that celebrate the Land Cruiser's rich off-road history" do not necessarily mean "a new Land Cruiser". Admittedly, this is an extreme example, but a sturdier looking Corolla with a roof rack and retro-style badges could also celebrate the Land Cruiser.
Thankfully, it sounds like Toyota doesn't have that in the pipeline. Dealers who wanted to remain anonymous informed Car & Driver that the next generation Land Cruiser will be sold again in the USA. However, it remains to be seen whether it will arrive in time for the 2022 model year. We may not see it until a little later in the 2020s.
"It's gone for 2022 but I think it will be back soon and be a lot more modern and luxurious," a source said.
It's a statement that gives us another piece of the Land Cruiser puzzle. As we've reported earlier, credible gossip will suggest that the next-generation model will ditch the mighty V8 of the current truck in favor of a turbocharged V6. Thanks to the components borrowed from the Lexus LS, there could even be a hybrid variant. Getting green and uplifted isn't an excuse to go soft, and we hear the Land Cruiser will continue to offer exceptional off-road capabilities.
The Land Cruiser has been celebrated worldwide for its ability to go anywhere. He was part of Toyota's American adventure from the start. The Japanese company established its American division on October 31, 1957, and sales began the following year. In 1958, 288 cars were sold in the United States, including a single Land Cruiser. The truck spent most of its life in California plowing snow and is currently on display in a museum in Salt Lake City.
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