Maybe it’s because I’ve been driving the bigger, tougher and manlier Toyota FJ Cruiser.The updates may be difficult to notice at first glance, but this retro bruiser makes you feel like a member of the A-Team. The drive is ruggedand capable, exactly what you want from a vehicle of this stature.
Together with its hearty 4.0-litre V6 petrol engine with 200kW of power and 380Nm of torque delivered via a five-speed autobox, the new FJ Cruiser now also has a bigger petrol tank - a much bigger tank - capable of doubling the fuel load to 159 litres.
And you’ll need it, because this macho man can drink with the best of them. But the addition to the 87-litre subtank and 72-litre main tank means you can get over 1 000km driving range, giving you lots of time to conquer the great outdoors or urban jungle.
While features like crawl control will ensure the FJ makes light work of terrain, thecreature comforts like iPod connectivity and cruise control as well as an extra power socket mean all your entertainment needs are taken care of.
For the alpha male of the pack, an FJ Cruiser Sports Cruiser option is available, which we tested, adding a Raven Black paint scheme, extra chrome detailing, FJ-styled door scuff plates, full wheel cover on the back door and leather seat trim. Further chrome highlights are visible on the door handles, side mirrors, bumpers and radiator trim. A set of Sport-badges rounds off the package.
It’s a unique car to drive, given its impressive off-road credentials and odd but attractive styling. But ultimately it does appeal to a very specific individual and the heavy fuel consumption rate is a bit of a turn off, so is the rear legroom.