Land Cruiser is a long-standing Toyota name, though what it now represents is something very different and in some ways puzzling. Today, another model, the FJ Cruiser, is the spiritual successor to the early, military-style Land Cruisers. The redesigned 2008 Land Cruiser, an eight-seater, is larger than Toyota's Highlander and 4Runner midsize SUVs, smaller than the Sequoia full-size model, and more expensive than all. The Land Cruiser is basically the less-classy brother of the Lexus LX 570. Their prices are roughly within $5,000 of each other — and once you get above a $60,000 sticker price, $5,000 isn't quite as much a difference as it is to buyers of a Camry.
At this size and price, competitors include the Hummer H2, Land Rover Range Rover Sport, Mercedes-Benz M- and GL-Classes, and the Porsche Cayenne S.
The Land Cruiser is more than 6 inches longer and almost 2 inches wider than the Highlander. It's about 9 inches shorter and 4 inches wider than the Sequoia. Of the current Toyota SUVs, the Land Cruiser looks most like the Highlander. The edges are rounded and the grilles and headlights are more prominent than before. One major difference is that the Land Cruiser is a truck-based, body-on-frame model, which puts it in league with the FJ, 4Runner and Sequoia — all of which are several inches taller than the car-based Highlander.
Though it has eight seats divided among three rows, the Land Cruiser has a shortcoming common to truck-based SUVs: Its interior space isn't as great as you'd expect from its outside girth. The headroom and legroom measurements are all lesser than in the midsize Highlander's. Only in width does it exceed the Highlander — most notably in the third row, where the Land Cruiser gives about a foot and a half more hip room and roughly 7 extra inches of shoulder room.
Likewise, the maximum cargo volume for the Land Cruiser is 87.1 cu. ft., where the Highlander's is 95.4 cu. ft.
For comfort, convenience and safety, a powered tilt/telescoping steering wheel is standard, and sonar rear parking assist and a backup camera are available.
Under the Hood
Replacing the previous generation's 4.7-liter V-8 engine is a 5.7-liter. It puts out 381 horsepower and 401 pounds-feet of torque through a six-speed automatic that drives all four wheels, full-time. You might not expect it from the sticker price, but the Land Cruiser is intended to be fully offroad-capable. The rear suspension is multilink, but the rear axle is solid, which has advantages offroad but is viewed as a detriment in onroad ride and handling. It has a low gear in the transfer case, along with an adaptive suspension and a new technology called CRAWL Control that manages the throttle while the driver steers over obstacles.
The six-speed transmission may provide some efficiency, but the Land Cruiser is just 300 pounds shy of weighing three tons, so the truck's EPA-estimated gas mileage rating is 13/18 mpg (city/highway).
On the upside, the Land Cruiser's towing capacity is a healthy 8,500 pounds.
In addition to the required frontal airbags, the Land Cruiser has seat-mounted side airbags and knee airbags for both front occupants. Curtain airbags cover the side windows for all three rows of seats in the event of a side impact or rollover. An electronic stability system is standard, as are front-seat active head restraints.
Cars.com Expert Reviews
|Kelsey Mays||Cars.com National||July 16, 2008|
|Joe Wiesenfelder||Cars.com National||October 8, 2007|
|G. Chambers Williams III||Star-Telegram.com||July 5, 2008|
|Emily Hansen||Mother Proof||April 24, 2008|
|Steven Cole Smith||Orlando Sentinel||March 1, 2008|
|Scott Burgess||The Detroit Newspapers||February 27, 2008|
|G. Chambers Williams III||Star-Telegram.com||October 14, 2007|
People Who Viewed This Car Also Viewed
Closest Dealers Listing this Car
Featured Services for the Toyota Land Cruiser
- Sell your current car quickly and easily on Cars.com.