IT MAY BE 10 YEARS OLD, BUT TOYOTA’S LAND CRUISER 200 SERIES IS SELLING BETTER AND BETTER.
PERHAPS it’s a reflection of a lack of serious competition in the large 4x4 wagon market, but sales of the 200 continue to grow, climbing some 13 per cent in the first six months of 2018 compared to the same period in 2017. And that comes off the back of two years where sales grew by 20 per cent and 30 per cent before that.
In fact, the 200 has never sold better despite being more than 10 years old. A few years back the 200 was hovering outside the top 10 best-selling 4x4s, but is now well established at number seven and closing on the Navara.
The 200 has no doubt benefitted from the fact Nissan’s Patrol Y62 is petrol-only, and you haven’t been able to buy a diesel Y61 Patrol for more than a year. And all in a market where diesel rules – Toyota offers the 200 with a very sweet 4.6-litre petrol V8, but only 1.0 per cent of 200 Series buyers take up the offer.
Nor does the new Land Rover Discovery offer much sales competition to the mighty 200 – in the six months that 6581 LC200S were sold, Land Rover sold 1026 Discoverys and Nissan just 716 Patrols.
The 200’s sales have accelerated since its facelift back in 2016. That facelift brought distinctive new styling, a raft of new safety and tech kit, and Euro 5 compliance via a DPF, improved fuel economy and even a slight jump in overall power.
As ever the 200 is effortless to drive both on and off the road. The engine may be a bit ‘truck-like’ in terms of refinement, but it does every job asked of it without raising a sweat. And while the 200’s on-road dynamics aren’t the sharpest, the ride comfort is excellent on even the nastiest of roads.
To improve the on-road dynamics of the venerable 200 (and the offroad ability even more), ticking the KDSS option box on the GXL diesel is a very good idea.