2020 Toyota Land Cruiser

Definitely elevates your status!
February 1, 2020 Updated: February 1, 2020

Luxury and versatility go hand in hand with this beautiful car.

The V8 engine produces an immense 381 horsepower at 5,600 rpm and 401 lb-ft of torque at 3,600 rpm, providing all the motivating energy you need, whether it’s going fast on a super highway or navigating a narrow pathway in the piney woods.

For over 60 years, Land Cruiser literally “Conquered the globe.” Features like Enhanced 5-speed Crawl Control with Off-Road Turn Assist, Multi-Terrain Select, and Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System (KDSS) help you get wherever “there” happens to be.

I wasn’t familiar with the Kinetic Dynamic Suspension, but a family trip to the Texas Coast gave me an excellent opportunity to play “discovery.” The system helps maintaining optimal traction on uneven terrain. When activated, KDSS uses hydraulic cylinders on front and rear stabilizer bars to allow more suspension movement on uneven surfaces.

The Bolivar Peninsula is just a ferry ride from Galveston Island. The perfect place for an opportunity to try out all the neat features offered by the Land Cruise. The nearly abandoned coast line was rich in sand and dunes and ripe for conquest. High grass and rugged terrain just off the paved road led to the beach. Often smooth, but the terrain still allowed waves to rest upon high salt grasses snarled roots. Though initially challenging it would prove no match for the Land Cruiser.

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Digitally-supplemented cockpit. (Courtesy of Toyota)

The Land Cruiser comes with all the amenities and creature comfort associated with a luxury vehicle, such as heated and ventilated leather seats. It was greatly appreciated when we returned to North Texas and faced plummeting temperatures. Once the cold front had gone through and temperatures were once again in the mid 50’s the four-zone automatic control came to the rescue.

The 9-inch color touch-screen fits perfectly within the digitally enhanced cockpit. The infotainment system has SiriusXM Satellite Radio, Navigation, and communications all bundled.

The Rear Seat DVD Entertainment System brings personalized entertainment to the back seats. The two 11.6-inch screens placed behind the driver and passenger seats provide the comfort you expect at home.

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Rear Seat Entertainment System. (Courtesy of Toyota)

Question: What keeps a 6, 8, and 9 year old quiet on a long trip? Answer: Hundreds of oatmeal cookies, numerous potty breaks, and the aforementioned entertainment center.

The second and available third-row seats allow up to eight to ride, with seven quite comfortably. For more cargo space, just fold down the third-row and you will have 80 cubic feet of cargo room.

The fuel cap opener is located way down to the left of the steering wheel. It is small and hard to find, especially in the dark, even if you know the general area.

One night in a bad part of Dallas, I was nearly out of gas. I pulled into a station to get refueled. This was my first time to refuel at night. I could not remember exactly where the gas tank switch was located, but I’ll never forget where the hood release was located. I opened it three times. And right next to the hood release was the gas tank switch.

The Land Cruiser has a whole host of safety features. Although they aren’t new discoveries, they provide the backbone of occupant safety. An array of 10 airbags, Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, Trailer Sway Control, and Pre-Collision System are just some of the safety ensemble.

I averaged 18 mpg on the trip to the coast and back. Two simple but helpful things I liked were the large knobs for air and radio, and the easy accessibility of the tailgate.

Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price starts at $85,415.

All features mentioned in this column were standard.

Durhl Caussey writes a car column read around the world. He may be reached at this paper or durhlcaussey@gmail.com.