2007 Toyota FJ Cruiser – Test drive and new SUV review

31 Aug 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on 2007 Toyota FJ Cruiser – Test drive and new SUV review

The retro SUV wins the heart of a car guy

The FJ is anything but dowdy: It has a unique derived from the Land of the 1960s.

If you want to know why the set the standards for the North American market, look no further the 2007 Toyota FJ Cruiser. a vehicle that’s intended to attention for Toyota rather actual sales, known in the as a halo vehicle. But while American and European halo prioritize style over the FJ Cruiser is unique in that it was to be practical as well. $23,735 price ($31,953 as tested); 3 mile basic warranty; 6 mile powertrain warranty; EPA 16 mpg city/19 mpg highway.

First Good looking and easy to with

Ask anyone who has owned a Viper or an Isuzu VehiCross as only vehicle. After a the novelty tends to wear off and the impracticality becomes a problem. But the FJ Cruiser isn’t just a you can live with on a day-to-day it’s a vehicle you would to live with on a day-to-day Yes, the FJ looks cool but even if the FJ were wrapped in as dowdy looking as the Toyota I’d still give it the four-and-a-half star rating.#13;#10;#13;#10;

But the FJ Cruiser is anything but dowdy: It has a shape derived from the Cruisers of the 1960s (in particular a known as the FJ40, hence the FJ name). In my opinion, it’s up with the Mazda Miata and Mustang as one of the best-looking retro ever to hit the road.#13;#10;#13;#10;

The Toyota FJ I test drove had the $7,265 Racing Division (TRD) Edition package, which the FJ’s iconic white in favor of a monochrome Diamond finish. I used to think the FJ looked best in bright or Tonka-truck yellow with a roof, but the all-black scheme grew on me. Unique 16 grey — smaller than the 17s fitted to the FJ but with chunkier tires — are also of the TRD package, as are TRD-tuned Bilstein absorbers, an active traction system (A-TRAC) specially for off-roading, rock rails underneath the body, and a whole of TRD badges.#13;#10;#13;#10;

Continued below.

In the Driver’s Lousy sightlines, but everything is great

The Toyota FJ Cruiser is and relaxing to drive, thanks in part to an interior layout shows Toyota’s typical to detail.

Photo #169; Gold

The TRD package adds to the inside: Thick rubber mats and giant-size shifter (all with TRD logos, front seat-mounted torso side curtain airbags, CD changer, cruise control, entry, tinted windows, wiper, and a dash-mounted pod that a temperature gauge, compass and — basically everything you possibly want in an FJ Cruiser.

I expected the FJ’s tall and short, far-away windshield to for an odd driving position, but I had no problem comfortable behind the wheel; the height-adjustable driver’s seat was a big The FJ’s biggest problem is the blind spot to the right, the giant mirrors don’t cover. Rear visibility is and backing out of a parking spot in the FJ is an absolute nightmare. The other big is the sunvisors — when down, they block half the windshield.#13;#10;#13;#10;

Despite these flaws, the FJ Cruiser is easy and relaxing to thanks in large part to an layout that shows typical attention to detail. is easy to reach and easy to The FJ Cruiser has tons of storage including a pair of deep at the back of the center console very useful when

The ends of the dashboard are finished in a motif, a detail that can be seen when the doors are That’s the sort of attention to for which the Japanese are famous.

On the Excellent performance on-road and off

The FJ is powered by Toyota’s 4.0 liter V6 239 hp and 278 lb-ft of torque. It’s a engine that delivers on-road acceleration and good torque for heavy-duty off-roading. offers the FJ Cruiser with a stick or a 5-speed automatic. My had the former; clutch and shifter were wonderful. I really rowing through the gears, the TRD shift knob was a bit big for my dainty girlie-man hands.

The six-speed, by the way, comes with a full-time four-wheel-drive system that has a low-range case and lockable center and differentials. Automatic FJs come either rear-wheel-drive or a part-time 4WD A $349 towing package enable the FJ that I tested to tow up to lbs. The downside to this is fuel economy — EPA are 16 mpg city and 19 mpg highway, and I drove 200 miles before the low-fuel-light on. #13;#10;#13;#10;

On-road handling is of big SUVs: Responsive but sloppy. The FJ corner with the aplomb of CUVs like the Honda and Toyota RAV4. Off-road is the FJ shines: The broad hood and windshield make it feel than it is, which hampers but the low-end torque of the engine is Manual FJs have a clutch-start pressing this button the vehicle to be started in gear.

That way, if it stalls a climb, you can set the brakes, downshift, the brakes, and restart the climb by the key — no need to futz the clutch.

Journey’s End: A all-rounder; the styling’s a bonus

Few can match the FJ’s combination of space, on-road comfort and performance.

Photo #169; Gold

I’m a car guy at heart, and it a lot for an SUV to win me over, especially a big, truck-based SUV like the Toyota FJ . But that’s just what the FJ did — it won me over. It looks it’s very practical, a lot of fun to drive, and it really works

If you’re looking for serious chops, the FJ Cruiser gives up a — but not much — to the Wrangler ; the latter’s narrower and solid front axle it a leg up. But until you get into vehicles the Land Rover — fancy electronics take of the risk (and need for out of off-roading — the FJ is one of the best.#13;#10;#13;#10;

If style is what you want, the Honda Element. Though the isn’t as fresh, its Rubbermaid-inspired like that of the Toyota FJ , is great for folks who like to do that involve being and getting dirty. The advantage to the is its car-based unit-body construction; makes it lighter and much fuel-efficient. The trade-off is that the doesn’t really work

Still, few SUVs can match the combination of style, space, comfort and off-road performance. fuel economy and big blind are the FJ Cruiser’s only real and then there’s the TRD package granted it adds a lot of desirable but it balloons the FJ’s price by a third. Find yourself a job and drive carefully, and life the Toyota FJ Cruiser will be

Disclosure: Review samples provided by the manufacturer. For more please see our Ethics Policy .

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