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An awful lot has been written and a lot of speculation about the Toyota Land Cruiser’s possible return to the U.S. Now it’s official with these teaser images. Yes, the Land Cruiser is coming back to the U.S. after its 2021 demise. 

Whether it was its aged platform, cost, or the fact that the Land Cruiser never sold that well, Toyota pulled the plug and never looked back. That is, until now. But since 2010, the Cruiser has only sold around 3,000 units annually. So it was just never a volume product for Toyota, leading to a higher cost to manufacture. 

Is the Land Cruiser platform the same as a Toyota Tacoma?

2025 Toyota Land Cruiser teaser with FJ40
2025 Toyota Land Cruiser | Toyota

Now, with all of Toyota’s body-on-frame mid- and full-size vehicles riding on the new TGNA-F platform, it makes for an easier transition. That’s because the full-size Tundra is already made in San Antonio, Texas. Actually, both the Tundra pickup and Sequoia SUV are already there. 

Toyota sources say the Land Cruiser is based on the Japanese 2024 Land Cruiser Prado. In the U.S., that’s what Lexus sells as the GX, and it is all-new for 2024. You can tell it is GX-based from the matching side DLO kickup. 

But the Land Cruiser should be a more rugged version of the Lexus GX. Yet it will feature much of the GX powertrain and suspension. That means full-time four-wheel-drive, a two-speed transfer case, a Torsen limited-slip differential, plus similar Overtrail and Overtrail+ off-road modes. 

How can we tell it’s based on the Lexus GX?

2024 Lexus GX front 3/4 view
2024 Lexus GX | Lexus

As for the teaser images, it shows an unidentified SUV faced with the original 1960s FJ40 Land Cruiser. It’s hard to tell, but the front headlights don’t seem to be round. That throws sand onto the rumors the Cruiser would have a retro theme as a throwback to the FJ40. This may or may not be good, depending on your take on retro styling. 

The images show just how much the new Cruiser has grown since its scrappy FJ40 days. It is really a different beast than the original that is so enduring to enthusiasts. We all know the advantages of smaller vehicles off-roading. 

So is the new Land Cruiser even an off-road contender? Should buyers just aim for the Toyota Tacoma, slap a cap on the bed, and call it a Land Cruiser? Or, should some buyers hold off for what could be a smaller unibody truck Toyota is developing?

Should buyers wait for the Toyota Stout?

Red 1973 Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser front 3/4 view
1973 Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser | Toyota

Ford’s Maverick is a runaway success. The Dearborn automaker just added another shift to the Maverick assembly plant. Yet even CEO Jim Farley says it may not be enough to satisfy demand.

Toyota is surely eyeing Stout production as a better Maverick alternative. It’s more along the size of the FJ40, if not in the same league with no separate frame. We’ll have to see whether the forthcoming Stout is a better street cruiser than Land Cruiser in the vein of the original.

As for the 2025 Land Cruiser, its debut is early next month, according to Automotive News. Seeing it in the flesh and how much it deviates from the Lexus GX should help potential buyers to decide if this new Cruiser is worthy of its name. 


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