There are just some vehicles that we can only wish was available here. Take for example the Toyota Land Cruiser 70 Series. While some may see it as an antique, the classic SUV is still going strong and is still on sale in other countries like South Africa.
Now imagine our surprise when we learned that there's a special edition of the classic 4x4 called the Land Cruiser Namib. Named after the Namib Desert, the special edition Land Cruiser features off-road-inspired upgrades, as well as aesthetic enhancements.
Available only as a double cab pickup (also called a 'Bakkie' in South Africa), this particular Land Cruiser gets a new mesh-style front grill, a front steel bumper upgrade with an integrated nudge bar, as well as headlight protectors. It is also equpped with additional auxiliary lights, a snorkel, as well as the signature Toyota lettering at the front and the rear tailgate.
Inside, the Land Cruiser rocks a classic cabin. While it may not be the most stylish, its rugged design means it can stand tremendous amounts of wear, especially when you're going off-road. Providing modern amenties comes courtesy of a touchscreen infotainment, as well as modern-looking gauges, and a multi-info display.
But perhaps serving as the most important upgrade on the SUV is the cooled glove box. That way, you can keep your drinks cold while you're out in the desert, or taking on rocky / muddy terrain.
Under the hood, it's powered by a 4.5-liter turbo-diesel V8. It puts out 205 PS along with 430 Nm of torque from its single turbo setup. Power is then transferred to a five-speed manual gearbox with selectable four-wheel drive. It also benefits from front and rear locking differentials for added grip off the beaten path.
But since this is a special edition, the Land Cruiser Namib gets an upgraded suspension made by a 'respected local off-road expert'. Toyota did not go into exact details, but we're guessing that it has been beefed up for heavy off-road use. In addition, the Namib also rides on chunkier 265/75/R16 Cooper Discoverer S/T Maxx tires in order to deliver extra grip.
Looking to get one? Sadly it's only available in South Africa and has a sticker price of ZAR 893,600 (about Php 3.055 million). Compared to the LC 200 which retails between Php 4.4 – 4.9 million here, the special edition Namib is quite the bargain.
While Toyota will most likely not offer it here in the Philippines, it's nice to see that such a classic is still sought after by many.