Skip to main content

Although the Chinese auto market is hitting some high notes with electric vehicles, copying something that’s been a huge hit for generations can be challenging. A new vehicle recently emerged in China wearing much of the Toyota Land Cruiser garb. Although this new SUV bears some resemblance to the beloved Toyota, it doesn’t bring the same appeal as the Land Cruiser.

What is this Chinese version of the Toyota Land Cruiser?

Kuluze Front and side view showing Toyota Land Cruiser front fascia features
Kuluze Front | Weibo

The latest version of the Land Cruiser, the 300-series, is something we’re deprived of in the United States. The newly surfaced Chinese SUV is called the Kuluze. We won’t get into the various ways to translate this name except to say that it means “Cruiser” in Mandarin.

Instantly, this small SUV distinguishes itself from the venerable Land Cruiser with its small stature. The Kuluze isn’t a vehicle that will compare to the Toyota SUV in any form, but it’s wearing some of the same features that we find in the latest Land Cruiser. Some of these features include the triple chrome bars, U-shaped grille, and distinct headlights. Moving to the rear, we see diagonal cut taillights and rear graphics that also mimic the Toyota model.

Where was this Chinese SUV spotted?

Although China has a history of keeping a lid on most things while also controlling the narrative, Carscoops found this small Toyota-like SUV on the Weibo website. Strangely, even this site seems a bit put off by the small vehicle, calling it a “Beijing grandpa’s car.” This is a mention of the vehicle being similar to an electric light SUV and a golf cart that can drive up to 30 mph, but that’s about it. These small cars also generally have a driving range of about 30 miles. Could this be the vehicle wearing Land Cruiser exterior elements? Possibly.

This small SUV isn’t anything close to the Land Cruiser or Lexus LX 600

White 2023 Lexus LX 600 parked and posed
2023 Lexus LX 600 | Lexus

The Kuluze might sight nearly as high as the Toyota SUV, it obviously wears some of the same exterior features, but it doesn’t have near the size, history, or prowess of the Land Cruiser. For those of us in the United States, the Lexus LX 600 features much of the same qualities as the foreign-sold Toyota Land Cruiser.

No one will mistake the Kuluze for the iconic Toyota SUV. It’s a bit of a shameless, poorly executed-copy. Still, it could be a popular golf-cart-like vehicle that’s a bit of a copy of a famous SUV while offering a low price and a small amount of functionality. Some Chinese companies have made golf carts that look like the former Hummer and Escalade SUVs.

Are we still sore about missing out on the Toyota Land Cruiser?

Blue Toyota Land Cruiser 70th Anniversary Edition on a road
Toyota Land Cruiser 70th Anniversary Edition | Toyota

The most recent Toyota Land Cruiser isn’t sold in the United States. We’re still a bit sore about this omission. That said, we do have the Lexus LX 600, which offers all the same goodies in a luxury SUV package. Thankfully, we don’t have to shamefully putter around town in the Kuluze. The Kuluze is a terrible copy of the off-road dominant Land Cruiser.

Next, check out how the Lexus SUV could win you over, or learn more about the 2023 Lexus LX 600 in this video below:


Lexus Corrects Its 1 Big Mistake With a New Luxury SUV