The Toyota FJ Cruiser is classified as a retro-style SUV with off-road capabilities that are similar to that of the Toyota FJ40 Land Cruisers. This vehicle was initially introduced as a concept car at the North American International Auto Show in January of 2003 and production of it was officially approved after a generally positive response from consumers. The FJ was displayed to the public in its final production form at the North American international Auto Show in 2006 and it is built by Hino Motors, a subsidiary of Toyota.
By the time that production of the original version FJ40 ended in 1984, Toyota had already made the decision to go ahead with a larger and more luxurious Land Cruiser line. The concept behind the new FJ was that it would have a series of rugged capabilities, some of which are shared with the original FJ40. The FJ Cruiser concept was first introduced to the public at the 2003 Detroit Auto Show in Voodoo Blue, which was a color that would go on to be used for the production FJ Cruiser. One of the main attractions of this vehicle was its bold styling as well as the number of amenities it had to offer.
The FJ Cruiser has a number of interesting and attractive features with regards to its exterior, including a short wheelbase, stocky frame, and a grille and headlight arrangement that resembled the original version of this vehicle. There are many other throwbacks when it comes to the exterior design of this vehicle, including the nearly vertical windshield which features three windshield wipers to cover a maximum amount of surface space. The Cruiser is Toyota’s only current vehicle to bear the name of the carmaker across the grille as opposed to the corporate emblem which has been used on their vehicles since 1990.
The interior of the FJ Cruiser includes many different design elements which were intended to enhance off-road handling. All of the interior surfaces in this vehicle are made up of washable rubber materials in order to make cleaning it out easier for those who use it for off-road driving frequently. This vehicle incorporates oversized controls to help with drivers who wear gloves and there is also a 3-gauge cluster, including a compass, thermometer, and inclinometer. This version of the FJ also has a 110 volt rear outlet which was carried over the from the FJ Cruiser concept car.
Measuring 183.9” in length, the FJ Cruiser is by far the longest compact SUV to ever be sold by Toyota in North America. This car comes in between the slightly smaller RAV4 and the mid-size Highlander in this automaker’s lineup. The FJ is made up of many components from other vehicles and shares engines and transmissions with the Tundra, 4Runner, and Tacoma. This vehicle also uses certain suspension components that are found in the Hilux, 4Runner, and Prado. The chassis that the FJ Cruiser uses is a body on frame truck-style design that is based on the Prado platform for maximum and long lasting durability.
The Cruiser comes with a 4.0 liter 1GR-FE DOHC V6 engine. The 2007 to 2009 models of this vehicle have a engine with variable valve timing or VVT-I, which can produce up to 237 horsepower at 5200 rpm and 278 pound-feet of torque. The 2010 model year of this vehicle received the Dual VVT-I technology, which is able to adjust timing on the intake and exhaust camshafts, leading to a power increase of 260 horsepower at 5600 rpm. All of the four-wheel drive models of the Cruiser are equipped with the RA61F manual transmission and have a 4-wheel drive system that is permanently engaged.