- There's an all-new Land Cruiser for 2024.
- It's smaller than the last generation.
- The standard 4WD hybrid powertrain is good for 326 hp.
- We expect a starting price in the mid-$50,000s.
2024 Toyota Land Cruiser First Look: An Icon Goes Back to Basics
Smaller and more affordable, with a hybrid powertrain
Arnold Schwarzenegger's Terminator may be best known for the saying "I'll be back," but you can imagine the Toyota Land Cruiser uttering the same thing after Toyota discontinued it after the 2021 model year. Now the Land Cruiser is crashing through the proverbial police station window for 2024, reborn to be smaller, more agile off-road and less expensive than it was before.
This is a return in some ways to the Land Cruiser's roots. Before it was a big, plush off-roader, it had a much smaller form factor and a lot fewer creature comforts. This midsize SUV seats five passengers and will take its place between the smaller 4Runner and bigger three-row Sequoia within Toyota's lineup of truck-based SUVs. Based on Toyota's truck-based TNGA-F platform, the new Land Cruiser is related to the similarly new Lexus GX. And in case you're curious, its 112.2-inch wheelbase and 193.7-inch overall length generally line up to those of the 1998-2007 Land Cruiser and Jeep's current-generation Grand Cherokee.
The 2024 Land Cruiser should arrive in dealerships in the spring of 2024. Toyota hasn't officially given pricing but we expect it to start around $55,000. It will be offered in three trim levels: Land Cruiser 1958, Land Cruiser and Land Cruiser First Edition. The First Edition (you guessed it) will kick things off and the first 5,000 vehicles sold will all be in this configuration, before the other two trims will be offered. The 1958 in the base model's title refers to the year that the Land Cruiser was first sold in the United States, and it has a few retro touches like circular headlights (also found on the First Edition) and black panels near the grille.
What's under the Land Cruiser's hood?
There will only be one powertrain offered initially for the Land Cruiser: a turbocharged 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine paired with a hybrid system to produce a combined 326 horsepower and 465 lb-ft of torque. This is the same i-Force Max powertrain Toyota is going to offer in the redesigned 2024 Tacoma and we expect it to provide suitably robust acceleration. Power is routed through an eight-speed automatic transmission and standard four-wheel drive. Towing capacity is 6,000 pounds when properly equipped and a trailer hitch comes standard.
Will it be capable off-road?
From a suspension perspective it has all the tools, but we haven't tested this hybrid powertrain off-road so that remains a question mark. Besides having standard 4WD, the Land Cruiser will have a two-speed transfer case, allowing for operation in 4-Hi or 4-Lo. A center locking differential and an electronic locking rear differential are also standard to further help the Land Cruiser maximize available grip on slippery or rocky terrain. The Land Cruiser and First Edition also get a disconnecting front stabilizer bar to allow for more off-road articulation. The Land Cruiser's ground clearance (8.7 inches) and approach and departure angles (30 or 31 degrees and 22 degrees, respectively) are appropriate for an off-road-oriented SUV, too.
How's the Land Cruiser's interior?
The third-row seating option is now gone, leaving the Land Cruiser as a five-seat two-row SUV (for now). The overall vibe is less luxurious and more utilitarian, an expected change given the lower price tag. Styling and layout matches what we saw in the Lexus GX, just with a step down in materials. But there are still physical controls for the climate and easy access to many of the off-road settings, which we like. Both rows are roomy, with lots of headroom and legroom available. Getting rid of the third row also makes for a large, flat cargo area behind the rear seats. And the second row doesn't just fold down — it also tumbles forward to open up an even larger space, though Toyota did not offer exact cargo specifications at this time.
The Land Cruiser 1958 comes standard with an 8-inch touchscreen and cloth seats, while the Land Cruiser adds synthetic leather seats with heating and ventilation and a larger 12.3-inch touchscreen. Both screens offer standard wireless connectivity for both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. There is a premium package available for the Land Cruiser trim that adds leather upholstery, a head-up display, digital rearview mirror, 14-speaker JBL audio and more. The First Edition gets leather upholstery standard and a "First Edition" logo embossed on the door panels.
How's the Land Cruiser's tech?
The larger 12.3-inch screen does a much better job at filling out the dashboard, and the available digital rearview mirror is a nice addition that aids visibility. The midgrade Land Cruiser also offers a Multi-Terrain monitor that uses the surround-view camera system to give the driver a better idea of the surroundings while off-road.
All Land Cruiser models come standard with Toyota Safety Sense 3.0, which includes adaptive cruise control, a lane keeping system and Proactive Driving Assist, which can subtly help to slow the vehicle for curves and traffic while using adaptive cruise control.
The new 2024 Land Cruiser looks to be headed in the right direction. Its reduced price will make it more accessible to a wider selection of shoppers, and its smaller dimensions will make it more nimble off-road as well. The final piece of the puzzle will be to see how its hybrid powertrain can handle the challenges that begin when the pavement ends.