Not all Toyotas are created equally. Also, not all Toyota models are sold in the US, but they should be. We’re talking about two off-road gems; one that was popular here and one that would be. The FJ Cruiser is still being made but left our shores back in 2014. It continued to be sold in Japan until 2017 but is still sold in numerous countries. The Land Cruiser 70 or “Prado” SUV never touched our shores but as a cheap off-roader, it should have. Sharing many underpinnings with the FJ Cruiser it sees widespread popularity in foreign lands, but not here. It even has a pickup version.
The FJ Cruiser ended production here in 2014
The “Trail Teams” FJ Cruiser was the last FJ model sold in the US in 2014. From a high of 56,000 sold in 2006; its first year made, it saw steady sales of around 14,000 a year for years. In spite of not making any changes during its lifetime here and without much marketing support the FJ was a solid performer for Toyota.
It continued to sell for three more years in Japan before it was discontinued there. However, it continues to be available in Chile, South Africa, the Middle East, and the Philippines. So, you can still buy a new FJ Cruiser, a vehicle Hagerty Insurance and Edmunds think has already hit the bottom price-wise.
FJ Cruisers retain between 70-90% of its original value
Edmunds says the FJ Cruiser has retained 70-90% of its original value depending on condition. That shows solid demand still exists. Back in 2018, four years after being discontinued here, turn times averaged less than 30 days. Turn time is the number of days it takes to sell a particular vehicle. So, the FJ Cruiser doesn’t last long on used car lots or through private sales.
The list price for a new FJ Cruiser is under $40,000. That includes the uprated 4.0-liter V6 with 270 hp. Fuel capacity is 42 gallons allowing it to travel long distances. Advertising says it features water-repellent seats and easy-t0-clean surfaces.
Why doesn’t Toyota sell the Land Cruiser 70 here?
The real puzzle is why Toyota doesn’t sell the Land Cruiser 70 or the Namib pickup here. Both share a similar body and chassis components like the Chevy Silverado and Suburban do. Similar to a Jeep Gladiator, the Namib is another SUV pickup that would surely have a loyal following if sold here. It comes as a single- or double-cab configuration. Toyota even sells a special edition Namib. It gets an upgraded suspension, larger off-road tires, and a 4.5-liter diesel engine with 202 hp.
The Land Cruiser 70 is the SUV version of the Namib. The retail price is under $40,000. It’s a short wheelbase three-door. That’s one door on the driver’s side and two on the passenger’s side. That’s the same as the 1967-72 Chevy Suburbans.
A Land Cruiser 70 could ride the Bronco wave
With the arrival of the Ford Bronco sometime this year a similarly configured 70 could ride the Bronco wave. No other manufacturer has anything like it. While the Bronco will be wildly popular, even if Toyota only sold 10,000 to 20,000 of them the components and development were amortized years ago. So those sales are all gravy for Toyota.
We’re sure part of the resistance on Toyota’s part to get these to our shores has to do with factory allocations, the import truck chicken tax, and Toyota’s pursuit of volume. So, even without a practical scenario, we can still dream…