Monday, July 15, 2024
NewsToyota Already Mulling New Drivetrain Options For Its Latest Land Cruiser

Toyota Already Mulling New Drivetrain Options For Its Latest Land Cruiser

  • A fuel cell option is on the table.

  • An EV Land Cruiser is also considered.

  • A PHEV version would also make sense in some remote areas of the globe.


Toyota made a lot of noise with the unveiling of the 2024 Land Cruiser. The return of the iconic model is undoubtedly excellent news for fans of the rugged SUV, even if its switch to a hybrid powertrain isn’t as “traditional” as the larger displacements of yesteryear. In the past, the Land Cruiser could be equipped with an in-line six-cylinder engine or even a V8.

2024 Toyota Land Cruiser | Photo: Toyota

For 2024, the newcomer will instead be equipped with the iForce Max powertrain, comprising a 2.4-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder and a second electric motor and battery pack, but the manufacturer must also consider the future and the increasingly stringent emissions standards of our government authorities.

In this respect, the brand’s senior management and the model’s designers are not ruling out the possibility of integrating a more fuel-efficient powertrain under the hood of the brand’s latest 4×4. Interviewed by Automotive News, the project’s chief engineer, Keita Moritsu, confirmed that the vehicle’s current powertrain will not be sufficient to survive beyond 2030.

2024 Toyota Land Cruiser | Photo: Toyota

That’s why the automaker is already looking at plug-in hybrid, pure electric or even fuel cell technology. The problem with this last alternative is still the very limited infrastructure to supply the vehicle with hydrogen, while the fuel tanks would no doubt take away some cargo space. On the other hand, the technology is ideal for towing and long distances.

The electric option would be cleaner than the hybrid drivetrain, but for towing and longer distances, an electric Land Cruiser would perform poorly in the world’s more extreme climates. The chief engineer also indicated that solid-state battery technology was promising, but that there was still a lot of work to be done in this direction.

As for the plug-in hybrid option, it would not solve the emissions problem, even though a Land Cruiser PHEV would necessarily be cleaner than a vehicle with only a hybrid powertrain. On the other hand, this compromise would enable the vehicle to run on petrol in the more remote corners of the world, where the Land Cruiser is often seen because of its off-road capabilities and rugged durability.


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