Motoring reporter
Online Motoring Reporter
6 minute read
15 Nov 2017
8:13 am

Toyota’s Prado gets facelift

Motoring reporter

The significant changes are both cosmetic and mechancial.

Toyota has given its Land Cruiser model a number of upgrades and included a new premium grade to the large SUV.

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The Prado range has traditionally consisted of two grades, the TX and higher-grade VX. For the first time, a new third grade, called VX-L has been added to top the model line-up.

The VX-L model combines all the features of the VX whilst adding a power-operated tiltand-slide moonroof and comprehensive active safety assistance package to the mix. Despite the overall length being increased by 60mm to 4 840mm, it boasts a turning circle of 5.8 metres.

The bonnet has been shaped to improve downward visibility at the centre and it is sandwiched by the sides of the bumper to help protect the engine bay.

The corners of the lower part of the bumper have integral fog lamps and kick upwards, while the centre section is shaped like a skid plate for easier manoeuvring offroad.

The top section of the wings has been raised so that it’s easier for the driver to pinpoint the vehicle’s extremities.

The front grille’s apertures have been made as large as possible for optimum engine cooling, while the headlamp main beams are positioned inboard to avoid damage when driving off-road.

TX models utilise halogen bulbs, whilst VX and VX-L models feature high brightness LED units.

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All models feature LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL) and foglamps, in addition to an automatic light control system, as standard. The sharply trimmed lower section of the body reinforces the Prado’s broad stance and minimises the impact of the front overhang on the vehicle’s off-road approach angle. Ground clearance is 215mm, with 31-degree approach, 25-degree departure and 22-degree ramp break-over angles.

In profile, the peak of the front bumper has been raised and the bonnet, wing line as well as front and rear bumpers, have been aligned on the same horizontal axis, generating a more athletic and dynamic vehicle posture.

The vehicle’s profile is further enhanced by stylish new alloy wheels; 17-inch alloys on TX and high-gloss painted 18-inch rims on VX and VX-L derivatives.

New elements at the rear include a redesigned lamp cluster featuring two stacked C-shapeswith a LED stop light, a smaller rear garnish plate and a restyled bumper.

The top of the new centre console tower has been set lower by 25mm for a sleeker appearance and better front-on visibility when driving off-road. It is fitted with a new eight-inch, full-colour multimedia screen, a flush-fitting air conditioning control panel and the drivetrain-related instrument cluster.

The redesigned instrument binnacle has a four-gauge lay-out with precision Optitron (highdefinition back-lit) meters with a metallic base panel and polished dials with raised scale markings.

The meters flank a 4.2-inch TFT colour multi-information display (VX and VX-L) which presents comprehensive vehicle and infotainment data, controlled using switches on the steering wheel.

The combination leather- and wood-trimmed steering wheel itself is new, shared with the larger Land Cruiser 200.

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TX models inherit the highly effective “coolbox” located in the centre console binnacle. All models are now equipped with seat ventilation for driver and passenger, in addition to the seat-heating function for first and second row occupants.

The top-tier VX and VX-L models have satellite navigation and an enhanced surround-view multi terrain monitor camera system which also includes Panoramic and overhead view modes. The 14-speaker touchscreen infotainment system incorporates a tablet-like design and easy to operate switchgear.

As standard there is automatic dual-zone climate control, 6-speaker touch audio system, electrically adjustable driver’s seat, illuminated entry, cruise control, park distance control, keyless entry, three power outlets, Bluetooth connectivity, USB, 3rd row seating and reverse camera.

High grade models add memory function for the driver’s seat, a 14-speaker Premium audio system with woofer, multi-information display, power tilt-and-telescopic steering adjustment, rain-sensing wipers and power-fold-down 3rd row seats.

The Land Cruiser Prado retains the proven 3.0 D-4D engine, offering 120 kW and 400 Nm.

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This is mated to a 5-speed automatic transmission with gear ratios optimized for low-speed tractability and off-road use.

The 4.0-litre petrol engine uses a six-speed automatic transmission. Maximum power is 202 kW and peak torque 381Nm.

All Prado models feature Toyota’s Active Traction Control system (A-TRAC), which actively regulates wheel-slip, by directing torque to the wheel with the most traction. The system is capable of applying braking pressure to wheels individually to maximise traction. A low-range transmission with user-selectable rear and centre diff-locks and Hill Assist Control (HAC), naturally forms part of the standard ensemble.

The Multi-Terrain Select (MTS) system (VX and VX-L only), operated by a centrally mounted rotary knob, allows the driver to select the correct mode depending on the ‘road’ ahead. The system has five pre-configured modes (mud & sand, loose rock, mogul, rock & dirt and rock),

to tailor the vehicle’s traction control, transmission characteristics, power delivery and suspension settings to the terrain at hand. Downhill Assist Control (DAC) is included on VX and VX-L models.

The 4.0 V6 derivatives additionally feature ‘Drive Mode Select’ which offers five modes; Comfort, Sport, Sport +, Normal and Eco; to adapt vehicle dynamics according to driver preference.

VX-L grade versions of the new 2017 Prado are equipped with Toyota Safety Sense active technologies to help prevent accidents from happening, or mitigating the consequences if an impact does occur.

The package includes a Pre-Collision System (PCS) with pedestrian detection function, Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Lane Departure Alert (LDA) and Automatic High Beam (AHB). The Adaptive Cruise Control system uses radar sensors in the front grille to monitor the distance to the vehicle in front and applies corrective action via both throttle and brake inputs to maintain a specified ‘gap’.

The driver can choose from three pre-selected distances via a steering mounted button when the system is operating in this dynamic mode. The system also allows toggling between traditional constant speed and adaptive modes based on driver preference.

Further driver support is provided in the form of a Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (both VX and VX-L) and an upgraded tyre pressure warning system – with digital read out in the multi-information display.

These active safety systems complement the standard seven airbags and comprehensive brake and stability control systems (ABS, EBD, Brake Assist, VSC, Trailer Sway Control and aforementioned Traction Control).

All Land Cruiser Prado models include a 5 year/90 000 kilometre service plan and 3 year/100 000 kilometre warranty.

Model Pricing

  • Land Cruiser Prado 3.0D TX R 821 700
  • Land Cruiser Prado 4.0 V6 VX R 930 000
  • Land Cruiser Prado 3.0D VX R 932 400
  • Land Cruiser Prado 4.0 V6 VX-L R 967 200
  • Land Cruiser Prado 3.0D VX-L R 969 600