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Toyota FJ Cruiser

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Comments

  • "why not start a new class, car crossovers, with an RSC-type vehicle"

     

    New? haha, thats not new, Subaru has been doing that forever. And did you forget the AMC Eagle? (or whatever it was called). No one wants an off-roading car, the whole point (and fun) of an SUV is you are seated nice and high.

     

    As far as the market for 2-door off-road SUVs, it is small because there are none available. The friggin VehiCross sold (and sold out) at an extremely high price, and there are still websites dedicated to it.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    full-size Bronco? What a beast. Great offroader too, if not for being plagued with mechanical problems. And two doors.

     

    You need a frame underneath to absorb major body torquing that happens offroad. Yeah, they can make some pretty stiff unibodies nowadays, but imagine how tweaked it would be in a couple of years...

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • I'm not saying the FJ won't meet 40k in year one. But it will fizzle quickly after the initial hit.

     

       You seem to be all to ready to discount the 4Runner as an off-roader.

     

       You'd be hard pressed to count on one hand the SUVs better off-road than a 4Runner. This 4Runner is EASILY better than the last off-road, or on!

     

       Nymph

       

       I'm not talking about cars with 4WD. I'm talking about truly tricked out off-roaders built out of the car model. There is nothing like the RSC out now. Make an FJ CAR for us to play with.

     

       DrFill
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    "This 4Runner is EASILY better than the last off-road, or on!"

     

    When was the last time you did any offroading? Where there was actually NO road?

     

    I assure you the first part of your statement is not true.

     

    Lower ground clearance, a HUGE long butt, bad departure angle, heck I clanked the butt end of one on the ground going up a steep driveway, and that was ON PAVEMENT. And HOW many tons does it weigh now????

     

    As for FJ, you you do not properly take into account the price factor, which will ensure it does 40K per year over the model run, I would think. In fact, I think it will do better than 40K for the first couple of years. Perhaps get close to doubling that figure the first year out?

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • And more tech help than a Range Rover!

     

      A less impressive departure angle doesn't mean it's a soft-roader.

     

      This 'Runner could clear hills the others couldn't dream of.

     

      And it's weight is still manageable, around 4200 or so.

     

      Picking on the 'Runner to defend this FJ won't get far here.

     

      DrFill
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    "Picking on the 'Runner to defend this FJ won't get far here."

     

    You have been constantly pushing the assertion that the FJ is totally redundant because of the existence of the 4Runner. All I am saying is no way is that true, for several different reasons.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • Some of the main things that excite me about the FJ are it's similarities to the 4runner. But don't forget that it has unique appeal.

     

    First, a similiar frame as the 4runner, with a wheelbase not much shorter. On-road ride should be similiar to the 4runner.

     

    Second, the same powerful 4.0 V6 as the 4runner. That should make the smaller, lighter FJ really move compared to the 4runner.

     

    Third, a smaller package- 11 inches shorter overall. I don't need to seat seven or haul plywood. The 4runners have gotten big. I really like the proportions of the FJ.

     

    And, most importantly, PRICE! 4runners are getting expensive. If I can get the same technology (frame, engine, tranny, 4x4, etc), in a better size for me, and I don't have to pay as much as a 4runner, I'm all for it.
  • I dunno. I think that the 4Runner isn't a super hardcore off roader, but it's hard to find a midsize one of those at a reasonable price.

     

    (LR3 is NOT reasonable, I'm poor!)

     

    It's a pseudo off roader, and Toyota needs it to fight off the Explorers and Trailblazers. I like the 4Runner.

     

    The FJ will take up a different price segment, as well as being a REAL off roader. This isn't a dis on the Runner! They are just completely different SUVs for completely different reasons. The Runner will be softer and bigger, and the FJ will be loads smaller, a bunch more agile, and a bunch cheaper. HOWEVER, I fear that Toyota may be shooting itself in the foot by not offering a four door. I've been in a VehiCross (obscure 2 door. Izusu made it from 99 to 2002) and it was mighty hard to get in and out of. Well, maybe I'm getting old. But let's not mince words. The FJ is a nice alternative to the Wrangler and Xterra <----silly name!! But.... not everyone knows that the Runner is a soft, midsize SUV, so it may cause a little sales friction. Don't get me wrong, they are way different, but the rest of the world who does not care may mix them up. Just my two cents. ---Chris
  • You're screwing up the rotation.

     

      I'd like some smoke too!

     

      The wheelbases are 8-10 inches apart, if memory serves me right, as this is a much shorter vehicle in length. This creates choppiness in ride quality.

     

      This thing will weight not more than 300 lbs less than 4Runner. And a good deal of the cost savings will come in ride quality (and obviously exterior design). Do you think they're putting a lot of effort into making a compliant ride out of this purebred off-roader?

     

      If you can't tell by the design, target audience, sale projections, wheel/tire package, that this thing rides rougher than any 4-door midsize SUV, then

     

      Puff, Puff, Give!

     

      DrFill
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    your memory DOESN'T serve you right. The wheelbase is only four inches shorter, it is overall length that is 11 inches shorter, the better to remove that huge butt 4Runner has now.

     

    I would expect it to come in around 500 pounds lighter than a 4x4 V-6 Runner. Maybe more, as it will be more sparsely equipped than the Runner, but probably right around there.

     

    As for the four doors issue, that is nothing to sneeze at. I think it helps that it has two little swing-back half doors like an XtraCab pick-up, but maybe they will add a proper four-door model in the future. I am sure they are afraid of cannabalization from RAV and Highlander sales if they offer a four-door version.

     

    As for the ride, there is a certain amount of compliance in the cab that is provided by anything riding on a full frame underneath, and that combined with car-type (ie NOT leaf spring) suspension in the back and a longish wheelbase for this size of vehicle should make on-pavement ride just fine.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • But with off-road M&S tires, a stiffer suspension, shorter wheelbase, and an anti-plush interior and seats, I wouldn't be using one as a daily driver in NYC, I'll say that.

     

      The 4Runner should be downright plush in comparison. I don't see how you get a "fine" ride quality form this vehicle. Why would it be fine again?

     

      You also forget this is a taller, wider vehicle, so the size it loses in length comes back in width and height.

     

      4Runners are 4100-4500 lbs.

     

      The H2 is well over 3 tons! H3 is supposed to be close to 5000! This is smaller vehicle, but it depends how serious the parts 'Yota uses underneath. And it will use many less tech supporters than 4Runner, so more shafts, levers, and bolts will replace some of the processors and microchips, adding weight.

     

      I doubt ride quality is a high priority in it's production for it's target audience, single males desperate to look cool.

     

      Family vehicles get softer suspensions.

     

      DrFill
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    I agree - it is unlikely that ride quality was very high on the priority list in the development of the FJ. But when I say ride will be fine, I mean in the sense that the ride of my 15 year old 4Runner is fine for me, even though many would call it trucky. FJ is a vehicle primarily designed to go offroad, and as such I am not looking for the pillow-like ride of a Camry here. You want a rough highway ride, try taking a trip in my RSX some time. Six hours of that is bearable, but not enjoyable.

     

    I don't know why you would expect the FJ to have stiffer suspension than the 4Runner. Vehicles designed to go offroad usually have longer and softer suspension, so as not to beat you up over realy bad surfaces. In fact, this is why they are always criticized for their on-pavement performance, because that long, soft suspension takes a lot of the "sport" out of the road ride.

     

    As for that whole piece about less tech supports and more levers, I just don't think there is any way you can possibly know that yet, unless you have actually helped design this vehicle, in which case this is an awful lot of contempt considering it's something you had a hand in (!!).

     

    As an assumption or a speculation, I would question it. Most of the running hardware will probably be pulled straight from the 4Runner to keep costs down for Toyota. The suspension will probably be unique and cheapened down for this cheaper model (no levers or microprocessors there), but the powertrain should come over intact from the Tacoma.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • "I doubt ride quality is a high priority in it's production for it's target audience, single males desperate to look cool."

     

    Another stupid comment.

     

    Everyone prefers looking "good" to looking "bad", and than includes the vehicle they happen to be in.

     

    The question is, can the vehicle look good, and also be utilitarian?

     

    The answer is, in terms of most SUV's, NO. Most are too big to be practical, or too car-like to be off-road.

     

    The FJ is both - looks good, adequate cargo space, and is properly proportioned and developed to be useful on and off-road.
  • Is properly proportioned, if you like ugly, and will be useful off-road, but not to the buyer who will spend 99% of the time on-road.

     

       The only stupid comments here are figuring all vehicles get a good ride, regardless of the vehicles mission. Everyone doesn't get good ride quality, especially HD truck drivers.

     

       DrFill
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    "Is properly proportioned, if you like ugly, and will be useful off-road, but not to the buyer who will spend 99% of the time on-road."

     

    This highlights the point we have all been making, and you have been missing: the FJ is for folks who will be spending MORE than 1% of their time off the road, or at least on roads mucked up by ice and snow and generally ripped to shreds by the weather (this coming from someone who has driven the roads around Tahoe enough to know that the weather rips them up so bad that potholes are like canyons).

     

    If all you want is a smallish SUV to commute in, with perhaps some AWD for rainy days, RAV4 and Highlander stand ready to answer your call, for prices in and around FJ territory. If you actually need a covered TRUCK, that is when FJ enters the picture.

     

    Oh, and don't forget that when it comes to terms like "ugly", one man's skunk is another man's rose. Looks are very subjective. I happen to think that the FJ as displayed at the auto show is the best-looking of Toyota's SUVs right now.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • "I happen to think that the FJ as displayed at the auto show is the best-looking of Toyota's SUVs right now."

     

    I think its the best-looking of ALL SUVs right now, because of its dimensions + design...but that roof...

     

    The white roof is interesting in theory, but Toyota better make it optional.
  • I don't drive off-road that much; actually, about 1%. But that doesn't mean I should try to take a RAV4 or Highlander out on the beach or down the muddy road to the mountain bike trails, that's for sure. It's just good to know that low-range is there if needed.

     

    I'm of the opinion that the smooth-riding, car-based SUVs are basically tall station wagons. Forget 1%, they are for people who never intend to leave the pavement.

     

    Also, I agree with the others here that like the styling. At the very least, one should be happy that the 'Yota product line won't be so dull/bland looking now.

     

    And define a "good ride." I'm sure the FJ would be comfortable enough to take on 5 hours of highway. I mean, it's not a Wrangler.
  • Bad news, Dr FillItUp. ;) I live in the NYC burbs. I know what it's like around here too, as well as in NYC. In NYC, I'd never drive a 4Runner, especially the current one. It's just too big to fit between the cabs and pedestrians. ;) And considering how big some of the potholes are, both in Manhattan AND up here in Pok-town, a real off-roader might be a good idea. ;)

    Anyway, I like this FJ thing. I'm almost kicking myself for buying a Mazda3 about a year ago, but I needed a car, and that Mazda drives SWEET (Definitly a "Sport" utility car, since it's the 5 door). Small cars are the greatest thing since sliced bread for fun behind the wheel, either on-road or off. Now I find myself wondering if I have it in the budget for a second vehicle (since I'll be paying for the Mazda for quite a while). A 4-by would be REALLY handy up here, especially in the wintertime when dealing with snowbanks seems more like rock climbing. And I wonder if the FJ could fit a plow?
  • I wonder why the announcement was made a full year before production. The new Avalon was announced at the Detroit show and is on sale 6 weeks later. I suppose there is no existing FJ model to hurt sales by buyers waiting. I don't know why they could not bring it out this fall like the olden days when the new models came out in October.
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    I wonder why the announcement was made a full year before production.

    Probably to get some of those who are considering the new Xterra, to hold off, as it is going after that same customer.

    Bob
  • Did the press release say whether the FJ will have power windows? I did see a reference to AC, but not PWs, of PDLs for that matter.
  • I hope they do.... the things like power windows and locks make a difference to me, and I think that it's standard on a lot of cars now.... especially over 20k. Unless, of course, you are popping off 40k for a Lotus Elise ;)

    I like the way the FJ looks a lot better than the way the Xterra looks. The white roof is.... interesting. I hope it's an option, because not everyone will love it.
  • "The white roof is.... interesting. I hope it's an option, because not everyone will love it."

    Including me. Its the one thing keeping it from being perfect. I want the FJ in black but I dont want to drive around a damn penguin
  • smootsmoot Posts: 14
    Well, the FJ has reinvented itself just in time to jump on the mish-mash bandwagon...that bandwagon being the Honda Element. At least the Element has some sorta design! The FJ reminds me of that Simpsons episode where Homers long lost, super-rich car manufacturer brother asks him to design a new type of car....well...there ya go. BTW, I do intend to purchase the 2005 Honda Element {Mag Met AWD EX} pretty soon, it looks so much more sturdy and multifunctional than what I've seen so far from the FJ.
  • "the FJ has reinvented itself just in time to jump on the mish-mash bandwagon...that bandwagon being the Honda Element."

    lol. Since when is one car a "bandwagon"? The FJ is the Element done right, it adds offroad tires, offroad ground clearance, offroad 4WD and off-road capability.

    There is no comparison.
  • Don't steal my taglines, ok?

    I'm having that copyrighted!

    DrFill
  • I see the FJ as competition for the wrangler-unlimited, and the xterra. I like it. I'll like it even more without the white roof, and maybe with the front and rear running light/signal lenses pulled in a little. It sounds like it'll have a great engine, good tow capacity, good interior size, toyota reliability (hopefully - new taco is disappointing) and good off road ability. The interior sounds like it'll lean utilitarian too. I'd like one for my three times yearly trips into Baja. I look forward to seeing this one.
  • cci82cci82 Posts: 2
    I hope toyota doesn't over equip the interior. I'd like to see it kept simple and basic. It would be nice if a base version with hand-crank windows and a 4cyl was made available. I hate to see cars that become to expensive with features that not everyone wants. I want a simple 4x4 that works--not one that is over equipped with all the latest gadgets.
  • That might work if they put a Tacoma 4 in there, but I'm seeing visions of a 4Runner 6 under the hood. Yeah, it would be out of reach for the target crowd if they didn't have a really basic model.
  • On another site, someone was of the opinion that since the FJ cruiser is going to be available in 2 wheel drive, it can't be a capable off road truck. He thinks that soccer moms and sorority girls are going to buy it. I don't see that. But it may cost more to get it off road capable. The New York Times said it was part of a new military class like the new H3. Maybe its somewhere in the middle.
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    This is what Toyota should bring over: The Oz-spec Land Cruiser 78, but LHD of course. It's a purpose-built off-roader/work horse that's the true offspring of the famed FJ40.

    http://lc78.toyota.com.au/LC78/HomePage/0,,,00.html

    Bob
  • Very cool, but far from cheap, even considering the exchange rate.
    By the way, on the Toyota site, I found a reference to power windows and door locks for the new FJ. Apparently, it will have them.
  • Instead of that commercial thing, I want a "LandCruiser 100 Standard" model. I've seen these on various safari-type TV shows, and although I know they'd never try to sell something like that over here, I'm still jealous.

    Here's a 'Yota LC 4x4, with a 4.2 diesel six standard, a 5-speed manual, plastic bumpers and steel wheels, optional A/C, no mention of power anything, I'm sure a spartan, functional interior... for 65% of the cost of a LC like we see over here. Sort of looks like a work vehicle, but still a nice-looking LC.

    I'd love to pick one up used with 39k for $25,000...
  • I also like the looks of the FJ. The photos of the one on the Toyota website looks to be more concept than production. I like the photos that Edmunds has. Mirrors, door handles, and roof rack are different and look more production than concept.
    The more I look at this vehicle the more I like it. Two dislikes are the white roof and 3 wipers on the windshield.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    there is a strong consensus against the white roof. Seems like most of the FJ40s I have ever seen were painted in that faded blue color, which looked OK with the white roof. But I am sure with modern paint Toyota will offer the FJ without a white roof for those who don't want it.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    The reason I like it is because it is a purpose-built workhorse, with absolutely no pretensions about it. It is what it is, and nothing more. It's honest, and to the point.

    While the FJ Cruiser may also be functional (to some degree), it's main purpose is to fit an "image," rather than do a "job," much like most SUVs marketed here in the US. I'd much rather see SUVs return to their roots in providing more honest-to-goodness utility, and less designer-like image.

    Bob
  • I'd much rather see SUVs return to their roots in providing more honest-to-goodness utility, and less designer-like image.

    I agree. That's why I like the LandCruiser 100 I described; it isn't trying to fulfill the "luxury" image like our North American models. I like the 78 also; I just need a medium/large, flexible, covered storage space for passengers/cargo, such as in a LC, but don't see the need for all large SUVs to be so luxurious as to drive the prices up. Why can't we have medium/large SUVs, relatively stripped, that are as cheap as mid-level optioned cars and small SUVs? Every full-size is so expensive, and with all kinds of ridiculous standard features.

    While the FJ Cruiser may also be functional (to some degree), it's main purpose is to fit an "image" rather than do a "job"

    I disagree, because it depends on the "job." As I said, I sometimes carry passengers, and often carry bicycles and like them to be inside the vehicle. I also occasionally venture off road. So, I need a vehicle that is large enough to accomodate my needs, and doesn't make me buy alot of luxury (good value). The FJ would fill this job very well.

    Competitors fall short in at least one area. The Ford Escape has a lot of room inside but can't go far off-road, and lacks torque; these are very slow. The Jeep Liberty doesn't have much cargo room, even with the seats folded down. The Honda CR-V lacks space, 4-low and torque, and is high-priced IMO.

    Further, I have considered Toyota products in the past and have been turned off by their blandness; everyone calls them "appliances." I am glad to see them produce a vehicle (scion excepted) that shows an attention to "image."
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    While the FJ Cruiser may also be functional (to some degree), it's main purpose is to fit an "image" rather than do a "job"

    What I meant by that is that often styling (and/or image) gets in the way of function. The huge "C" pillar on the FJ Cruiser is a good example of that.

    I've always felt that farm equipment, ATVs, and commercial trucks to be better "designed" than most "consumer" vehicles. Why? Because function overrides styling. I'd like to see more of that form-follows-function concept return to SUVs (and pickups too).

    Bob
  • I agree and am in the same boat. With a sturdy roof rack, the FJ would do everything I'd want. When I need to carry plywood sheets, (once every 10 years, if that), I'll rent a truck from home depot for an hour. I had been strongly considering a new tacoma, but the Taco's quality issues and price have turned me off on that idea. Also, for me, the most interesting dimension of the FJ is its relatively substantial width. While the width may detract some from off road worthiness on narrow roads/trail, for me it is worth it for the extra space for full sized guys, and overall stability. Since it's not narrow, it also will help in not looking too cutsie -- think suzuki samurai.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    "The huge "C" pillar on the FJ Cruiser is a good example of that."

    Despite what Toyota has said about the FJ, does anyone besides me think that there is still some cosmetic work to be done on the FJ before it hits the dealerships (like that huge C pillar and the wrapover rear glass, for instance)? I would think the glass in particular would be very costly on such an inexpensive model.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • The FJ is a good mix of styling and function, especially since its' competitors are not as functional. It is superior in both respects. When I think of a small/midsize SUV that was all function and no styling, I think of the late Jeep Cherokee. Not that these weren't attractive vehicles. But next to an FJ, one would look very plain.

    How do you guys think the large C-pillar would impair function?

    If they tone down the styling elements which make it unique, then we are left with another forgettably-styled vehicle that won't stand out from the rest of the Toyota lineup.
  • Yeah, the c pillar needs to shrink. I also think the turn signals' housings need to be pulled in a bit. Also, I came across a charcoal metallic gray photoshop'd FJ on another site (can't remember where now) that had the roof done in the same color as the body. It looked great.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    "If they tone down the styling elements which make it unique, then we are left with another forgettably-styled vehicle which wouldn't stand out from the rest of the Toyota lineup."

    Don't get me wrong, I would love it if they can afford to leave it exactly the way it was presented at Chicago. And certainly some of the unique styling elements like the front end will make it to production, I am sure. If they truly sell it with the "Toyota" badge on the front, it will be the only model in the entire line-up to have the Toyota name instead of the weird symbol they use for the Toyota brand.

    As for the C pillar, I think it will reduce the outside visibility somewhat, but I like the way it makes the FJ look, so I could deal if they left it just that way.

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    How do you guys think the large C-pillar would impair function?

    It blocks rearward vision, if you're looking over your rear shoulder. It creates a large blind spot.

    Bob
  • Wow, that looks great.
  • Agreed. I also think that the FJ will be a useful car, only because most of its competitors aren't. Escape, too unwieldy off pavement. CR-V, too wagon-y. Element, not an off-roader! Liberty, too small! I couldn't care less if it has a chunky C-pillar or not. If they lose those odd little details, then the FJ will end up looking like the rest of the Toyotas, which is what they were trying to avoid.
  • bpraxisbpraxis Posts: 292
    Please Toyota keep the two toned paint scheme like the Mini Cooper. The Vehicle is much more distictive with the white roof and contrasting lower paint.

    Cant wait to see all the color choices.

    Toyota keeps mentioning a very reasonable price in its press releases. Any speculations on what pricing will be. My guess would be similar to the Nissan Xterra?

    Or maybe Toyota will surprise us with very low pricing like the Scion line.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    the "Townhall test team" thread, bob posted a short review of the '05 XTerra today. The part that caught my eye was that a very basic 4x4 with only power accessories added, and a manual shifter, ran $25K plus on the sticker. Looks like Toyota has lots of room to play with price here...

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

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