It's not confirmed, but Toyota is considering reintroducing the off-roading legend.
There's a strong possibility the venerable Toyota Land Cruiser will make a return to the states, according to Jack Hollis, Toyota North America's executive vice president of sales.
Hollis told Motor Trend there's a strong possibility that the off-roader will make a comeback. "Will we ever? I would say likely yes." While that's encouraging, fans of the series shouldn't get too excited just yet.
"Obviously, Land Cruiser is such an important part of our heritage and has done such a great job," added Hollis. And I'll be looking at it, absolutely. Have I seen designs, thoughts, and hopes, yes. But nothing to announce. It's still a ways off."
This isn't the first time a Toyota representative has hinted at the Land Cruiser's reintroduction.
In January, an unnamed company spokesperson told Carbuzz that loyal customers should remain hopeful. "Don't be so quick to rule out the Land Cruiser. We obviously haven't made any announcements yet, but we are listening strongly to customer feedback."
The new Lexus LX, based on the Land Cruiser, is the closest thing America has to the iconic Toyota. Both gain motivation from a turbocharged 3.3-liter V6 and are capable when steered off the beaten path. However, the LX's gaping front end and more conspicuous looks may not appeal to the Land Cruiser's customer base, who appreciate luxury and off-road ability with subtle styling.
Even if the Land Cruiser makes its way to the States, it may prove difficult to source one. The burly SUV has proven popular in other markets, with Toyota announcing in January that there was a four-year-long waiting list. This may have changed with the easing chip crisis, but American consumers may be in for a wait.
We were lucky to drive the new Land Cruiser (albeit an armored one) and were left deeply impressed by the pothole-crushing ride, hushed cabin, and sophisticated driving manners. The sumptuous cabin and elevated driving position afford the driver a sense of imperiousness not experienced in many SUVs.
Land Cruisers generally have a long lifespan, so we may get the facelifted model in the states. Then again, we may have to wait for an entirely new generation, which will most likely include some form of electrification.