After many, many years of waiting, the all-new J300-generation Toyota Land Cruiser should arrive this year (and there won't be a 2022 model year vehicle in the U.S. to tide us over in the meantime). We don't know whether the Land Cruiser will come to America and, if so, whether it would be under Toyota or Lexus badging. Toyota's statement on the matter amounted to "stay tuned."
What we do have is even more leaked information about what the J300 Land Cruiser will look like. YouTuber Kirk Kreifels has obtained what appears to be technical design documents, and they give us a good idea about what to expect for the new SUV.
Visually, it looks like the next model won't be dramatically different from the current Land Cruiser. Toyota appears to keep the same broad form while making the modern updates to bring a car born in the 2000s into the 2020s.
The wheelbase will be two inches longer, though the overall vehicle length will be shorter. The Land Cruiser seems to taper more toward the rear, with wrap-around taillights and a shaped rear window. It looks like Toyota will ditch the split tailgate for a more conventional one, as well. Other changes include adding some plastic off-road cladding for a more rugged look and moving the side mirrors to the doors.
Bigger changes will come with the powertrain. The blueprints show a move from a V8 to a twin-turbo V6; some markets like South Africa may get a naturally aspirated V6 base version. The listed fuel economy for the twin-turbo V6 is 23.7 mpg, according to the leak. Potential EPA numbers may be more stringent, and it's not clear whether that was mpg combined or the top highway figure — but let's face it, any Land Cruiser mpg rating with a 2 in front would be a leap forward. The blueprints also have show a GR edition button, though that may not indicate a powertrain upgrade.
If you want some reason for optimism that Americans may get the J300, Toyota sold nearly 1,900 versions of the outgoing current model in Q1 2021, more than three times as many as they sold in 2020. That could indicate to Toyota that — with a new SUV and actual promotional effort — a Land Cruiser market in America still exists.