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70/70 For Toyota With Birthday Greetings from Loaded 4X4

Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you Toyota Land Cruiser as you celebrate your 70th birthday. Yep, that’s right, back in 1951 (that’s just a smidgin older than me), Toyota trotted out their first Land Cruiser in Japan; named Land Cruiser because they couldn’t get their mitts on Jeep as a generic name so they dropped the Rover out of Land Rover. Makes sense to me.

Above: They came out in droves after the Snowy Mountains Scheme started and this apparently was the first one. A period pic taken alongside what was new then, a 100 GXL Land Cruiser.

Today’s 70 series has a tenuous link to that first vehicle, although you could be forgiven that it’s screamingly obvious given the pluck of Toyota to supply a line of vehicles so low-rent in the fit-out stakes. That’s just a little jab at the lack of development that the 70 series range has seen over the years it’s been gracing our shores. You can read here what I thought of the 70 recently and the deep respect I have for the vehicle.

Does that matter though?

Obviously not when punters still keep lining up to buy one for that V8 legend!

As of today there’s even more reason to get into a 70’s froth, as Toyota announced that there’ll be a 70th Anniversary range of 70 series specials, 320 dual-cabs, 200 single cabs and just 80 wagons and available in three colours, French Vanilla, Merlot Red and good old Sandy Taupe, just for the tragics still pining for a little automotive pre-history.

Above: The wagon variant of the 70th Anniversary 70 series in Sandy Taupe with some nice black accents and double diff-locks.

Toyota’s VP of Sales and Marketing Sean Hanley stated that “The special-edition model – available in single-cab, double-cab and wagon variants – features bold styling enhancements that complement Land Cruiser’s rock-solid off-road reputation and ability to conquer some of the harshest terrain on the planet”.

Above: Bogged again and abandoned, but still conquering!

He then went on to say “The Land Cruiser nameplate has earned legendary status in Australia, with a decades-long track record of durability and reliability in the toughest conditions our country has to offer.”

Above: The LWB precursor to the Troopie but with four doors. How practical!

Got to love Corporate-Speak, because I can see real value in having a special edition 70th Anniversary badge on the bonnet and some black treatments in the paint department, some leather accented seat trims and a “woodgrain-look” trim and dashboard with silver and black accents that celebrate that rich heritage. Are you feeling the love?

Oh and not forgetting there’s two more USB chargers and a pair of cupholders!

That V8 legend soldiers on with the heroic outputs of 151kW of raw power and 430Nm of torquies that’ll handle any load with that excellent five-speed manual gearbox. Pity they didn’t mention anything about improved sound insulation to dull the roar of that V8 70 in fifth gear at 110km/h, screaming out for a change into sixth!

Above: Four years ago I reviewed this sngle cab and was underwhelmed. You’ll have to read the article.

Did they also fix the narrow rear track yet? Didn’t see that in the press release?

On the positive side it does come with front and rear lockers, a 130-litre fuel tank and a raised air intake.

If this is your style of four-wheel-driving then get your chequebook ready to be conquered. Arriving in dealerships in September 2021, the Anniversary models are priced from $80,050 (single cab), $82,600 (double cab) and $78,500 (wagon) plus on-roads. Oh what a feeling!

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