Toyota is working on an all-new Land Cruiser Prado for ’24
Toyota is preparing to unleash its first new Land Cruiser Prado in 13 years, in 2024. Expected in 2.8-litre turbodiesel and turbocharged 2.4 or 2.5-litre petrol combustion, and in diesel and petrol hybrid models. Along with the prospect of a powerful V6, the new Prado will gain modern new looks and latest technology too.
Little is known about how the next Prado will look. Let alone are there any test mules yet to suggest its dimensions. However, the visage of a dark SUV in a 2021 Lexus hybrid line-up collage photograph, has led to speculation. Is that car in the picture the next-generation GX. And thus, also the basis of the next Land Cruiser ‘180’ Prado.
Auto has taken that image, along with latest Toyota and Lexus design cues, to heart. We produced these exclusive renders of how we expect the new Prado will look.
Grainy image is said to predict new Prado
There has been considerable speculation around what will go on under the skin of the new Prado. Expect a full range of engines. Plausibly headed by the 227 kW 700 Nm 3.3-litre biturbo V6 diesel out of the 300 Series. Said to be the same spec this time around, it needs to take on Ford’s similarly equipped reimagined Everest. It also packs a turbodiesel V6.
Unlike the forthcoming 3.5-litre V6 based 300 Series hybrid, Toyota USA recently intimated that the hybrid version of the next Prado will get Toyota’s new electrified turbo petrol 2.4-litre four-cylinder Hybrid Max power unit. The same unit as the new Lexus RX and coming to town soon in the Toyota Crown. It should develop around 260 kW and 550 Nm.
That said, US Toyotas often feature different engines to rest of world models. Which means local models may well get a 260 kW 600 Nm naturally aspirated petrol-electric four-pot based on the RAV4 2.5-litre. Do not to rule out an electrified version of the venerable 2.8-litre turbodiesel for a torquey combined output of around 180 kW 600 Nm to make it the perfect tug.
This is all in keeping with Toyota’s promise of hybrid Prado, 300 Series, Hilux and HiAce models by 2030. That is also to counter plug-in hybrid rivals the likes of Ford’s turbo 2.3-litre Everest, and Jeep’s Grand Cherokee 4xe.
Petrols, diesels, hybrids and even GR-Sports
The new Prado is also expected to come in Gazoo Racing GR-Sport get-up alongside regular GX-R and ZX model lines. It will be built on Toyota’s new TNGA-F body-on-frame 4×4 vehicle architecture shared with Land Cruiser 300, Tundra, Sequoia, and Lexus LX.
Similar in width to the outgoing car, it will share components with the 300 Series and intriguingly, also with the current, seven-year-old Hilux. That said, the South African Hilux will shortly gain new four-wheel-disc brakes, wider axle suspension, and the larger footprint only just released overseas.
Another major component of the new Prado plan will be its part in returning the Land Cruiser nameplate to America. Toyota killed the Cruiser brand off in US, when it opted not to launch the 300 there in 2021.
“The Land Cruiser nameplate will return,” Toyota US sales boss Jack Hollis, suggests. “But there’s nothing to announce yet.” An American Land Cruiser return is slated for 2024, but it will be the Prado rather than the 300. Slotting in below the new Sequoia and above the 4Runner, it will be more of an off roader in that market, versus the more luxurious Lexus GX.
Of American Prados and a global Lexus GX
While Prado is not sold there, it is the basis of the current model US-only Lexus GX 460. Powered by a naturally aspirated 4.6-litre petrol V8, the GX shares the Prado’s body with unique front and rear styling and an upmarket cabin. It is expected that the GX will also continue into the new model, but as an international model this time around.
Toyota does not want an all new Prado to interfere with strong current Land Cruiser 300 demand. So being, the current Prado will first benefit a minor update later this year. Expect safety and cosmetic tweaks around a refreshed grille, interior colour, and trim changes.
First official images of the new generation Prado are expected to emerge around September this year. The new car will then make its first appearance in mid-2024. Local launch will likely follow that year, or early in ‘25. – Michele Lupini
Sketches: Michele Lupini