The 2020 Toyota Land Cruiser is unquestionably over-built for typical day-to-day commuting though simply knowing that “it can” is a big part of its allure. Its reputation as being one of the most dependable over-landing adventure vehicles in existence is held with little debate, however, as its capabilities have increased with each successive generation, so has its size, price, and appetite for fuel – almost to absurdity. Is it still relevant in today’s climate where SUV’s require fewer compromises than ever before? That’s what I set out to determine.
I really enjoy off-roading. It’s my bag. But what I don’t like is compromise. I want a vehicle that is able to confidently explore the beauty of the Rockies, as well as navigate through town. I don’t want clumsiness at 75 mph or tipsy handling around the mountain curves. I want to be assured that the design reviews, layout checks, and durability test cycles have worked out the weak points and, what the heck, a warranty would be nice to have too. Is that too much to ask for? Not for the growing list of vehicles that can provide it all – for a price, of course.
This RAV4 TRD Off-Road model has rally-car charisma in the way that it feels light on its feet while soaking up the noise from the dirt road underneath. Its skills are unique among the TRD line-up and they also extend their benefits into many everyday driving situations such as traversing highways that have seen better days, navigating side streets littered with potholes, or navigating through tight parking lots. The TRD Off-Road has plenty of value-added performance (as its steep price tag indicates) and has been transformed from a best-selling RAV4 into a truly unique and adventurous vehicle.
First off, the 2019 Toyota Yaris is a legitimate car. It may seem silly to state, but the decades of rental econoboxes have really tainted the small car image. The small Toyota hatchback can easily handle the daily demands of American life, from navigating tight parking, providing entertainment during the endless rush hour traffic, and even hauling a week’s worth of groceries or a trip to Home Depot. But is there enough charm in its minimalistic approach to put aside preconceived notions and ask the question of why not?
Many brands hope to develop instant name recognition but few have had their product’s distinct silhouette become synonymous with an entire category. The Prius has earned a place as the symbol of hybrid cars with its efficiency-focus engineering and now, it reaches into the all-wheel-drive arena with a motorized rear axle to better meet customer demand, of which, Toyota states, could make upward of a quarter of Prius sales.
The 2019 Toyota Camry Hybrid XLE brings all of the goodness of a completely new (for 2018) body structure and design theme. Looking to break out from the just-another-Camry mold, this latest generation sees increased refinement with higher quality interior materials and presents a sound case that this is the best Camry yet.
From a time when trucks didn’t have leather dashboards
The Toyota Tundra is essentially defined by its smooth and powerful V-8 engine and Toyota may be keen to keep it that way. Compared to its full-size competition, the Tundra isn’t going to win the ride and drive contest but Toyota’s legendary reputation for durability and retaining value proved overly convincing for nearly 120,000 customers last year.
The allure for big sales gains can undo the decades of a well-earned reputation for a vehicle. Even as the market shifts towards more car-like crossover vehicles, the Toyota Tacoma maintains its focus on off-road capability and top-notch reliability. Those qualities thankfully continue the with the 2018 model though it’s not without compromise.