Colin-on-Cars – Prado steps up

More power and and torque over a wider spread of the rev range is the primary change in the latest update to the Toyota Land Cruiser Prado – this now gaining the same improved GD-6 turbo-diesel engine fitted to the Hilux.

Offering an additional 30 kW of power and 100 Nm of torque derived from the switch to the latest-generation 2,8-litre GD-6 turbo diesel engine, it is now mated exclusively to a six-speed automatic transmission in place of the previous five-speed.

The engine now delivers a maximum of 150 kW at 3 400 r/min and 500 Nm over a wider 1 600-2 800 r/min band.

The latest generation 2.8 GD-6 engine was upgraded with a new ball-bearing turbo-charger with a larger turbine and impeller and improved engine rigidity and cooling. Better fuel economy is realised through optimised pistons and piston rings, changes to the cylinder block and head, higher fuel-injection flow rate and the adoption of high-performance materials for the exhaust manifold and cylinder-head gasket.

A newly-fitted balance shaft helps smooth out engine vibrations, improving NVH performance and contributing to an even higher degree of refinement.

The new six-speed transmission has revised torque converter lock-up mapping and a newly-added paddle-shift function. A low-range transfer case makes off-roading a cinch, while user-selectable differential locks (centre and rear) keep the wheels ‘in sync’ when navigating slippery conditions.

The 4.0-litre petrol engine continues unaltered (also mated to a six-speed automatic transmission). Maximum power is 202 kW at 5 600 r/min, with peak torque of 381 Nm delivered at 4 400 r/min.

Despite the substantially stronger outputs, Toyota claims fuel consumption improves to 7,9 l/100 km and CO2 emissions are down to 209 g/km. Fuel capacity is 150 litres with an 87-litre main tank and 63-litre sub tank. Maximum braked towing capacity is increased to 3 000 kg on 2.8 models.

A new-generation multimedia system is fitted across the range, which now incorporates a larger 9-inch touchscreen display (previous 8-inch), enhanced voice recognition and compatibility with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and customers are able to utilise mobile-phone-services such as Google Maps, Waze, Spotify, SoundCloud etc.

As before a three-grade strategy is followed; TX, VX and VX-L. The TX variants come equipped with automatic dual-zone climate control, 6-speaker touch audio system, electrically adjustable driver’s seat, illuminated entry, cruise control, park distance control, keyless entry, auto door lock, three power outlets, Bluetooth connectivity, USB, 3rd row seating and reverse camera.

Seat heating and ventilation are provided for front row occupants while second row occupants get heated seats.

VX 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 functionality for the third row seats.

The flagship VX-L versions feature Toyota Safety Sense (TSS), which encompasses Pre-Collision System (PCS), Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Blind-Spot Monitoring (BSM), Lane Departure Alert (LDA) and Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA). In addition, the Automatic High Beam (AHB) function provides enhanced visibility via the LED headlamps when activated. A power-operated tilt-and-slide moonroof completes the VX-L package.

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. Hill Assist Control (HAC) 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) and Crawl Control are included on VX and VX-L models.

New for 2020 is the inclusion of ‘Drive Mode Select’ on 2.8 VX and VX-L variants (already standard on the V6), which offers five modes; Comfort, Sport, Sport +, Normal and Eco; to adapt vehicle dynamics according to driver preference.

All Land Cruiser Prado’s make use of a body on frame construction with a double-wishbone front design and multi-link rear layout. TX models use conventional steel springs and dampers while VX and VX-L versions boast Toyota’s Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System (KDSS).

KDSS employs a hydraulic system attached to the sway bars, to effectively link all four wheels thereby reducing body roll and improving wheel articulation.

In addition, the VX and VX-L models also make use of Toyota’s Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS) to allow adjustability of the shock absorber damping level. This is linked to the Drive Mode Select function.

Model Line-Up & Pricing

Prado 2.8L Diesel TX             – R 939,900

Prado 4.0L Petrol VX              – R 1,029,000

Prado 2.8L Diesel VX             – R 1,060,600

Prado 4.0L Petrol VX-L          – R 1,072,600

Prado 2.8L Diesel VX-L          – R 1,105,800

All Prado models are sold with a 9-services/90 000 km service plan – with 10 000 km service intervals. A 3-year/100 000 km warranty is also provided.

Leave a Reply