Toyota Land Cruiser's potted history: From rugged prototype to ultra-comfort 4x4 - in pictures

The latest version of one of the world's most popular 4x4s has been unveiled. Take a peek at some of its previous versions

The 2022 Toyota Land Cruiser has been revealed in all its heftiness.

It's the latest vehicle in a long line of similarly-named models with a pedigree so strong one might suggest they deserve an obligatory headlight wink from other vehicles whenever their paths cross.

This particular SUV can date its origins back to 1951, when the company developed a military-truck prototype called the Jeep BJ. It bore a distinct likeness to the US army stalwart the Willys Jeep, not least in its name, so, from 1954 onwards, after a few legal wranglings, the model was renamed the Land Cruiser.

And Toyota has been steadily knocking out new and reinvigorated versions ever since.

The Land Cruiser has come in many iterations, not least the Prado and FJ variants, and, as well as the hardtop that is seen as standard, Toyota has manufactured the car as a convertible, a pick up, and an extended length estate version.

More than 10 million units have so far been sold worldwide, which by any benchmark is an astonishing automotive achievement – even if it might see the longstanding SUV lagging behind its stablemate the Corolla (currently standing at around 45 million vehicles sold, estimates suggest).

The Land Cruiser is recognised as the second longest-running SUV in constant production, bettered only by the Chevrolet Suburban, which can date its origins to 1935.

Over the years, models to follow the BJ include the J20 and J30 (1955), the J40 (1960), and the J70 (1984).

As of 1967, Toyota saw the potential for a vehicle that was less harsh on those driving it and released what are now known as the comfort-orientated models. This line started with the J50 and, until the new 2022 model, culminated with 2020’s J200.

And all of them have occupied a prominent place on UAE roads. Go to any mall car park, even the smaller ones, and try not to spot one. Achieving this goal might not rank as one of the Twelve Labours of Hercules, but it’s a tough ask.

Updated: June 10, 2021 12:43 AM

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