Why the Land Cruiser Is Successful in Nigeria
Asides its little compact sibling which has reached a god level of popularity across the world, the Land Cruiser has managed to stay relevant in its 69-year lifespan with its big V8 amidst environmentalist talks……oh yes they hate it and its big rivals.
So why has it been so successful on this side of the pond? We see them in every high profile convoy speeding through traffic, at the front any high-end establishment on the streets of Lagos and in some cases being used as private vehicles by some people who want no problems with the men in black (Police).
On paper, the big naturally aspirated gas-guzzling V8 would be a major red flag, but what the Land Cruiser lacks in fuel economy, it gains in reliability. It’s one of the most reliable full-size SUVs in the market.
It has that Go anywhere bravado found on most full-size offroading SUVs, yes in the right hands, the Land Cruiser can traverse any terrain thrown at it thanks to its body on frame chassis and a proven four-wheel-drive system, as well as other driver aids like offroad cruise control and hill descent assist which come good on some inaccessible roads…if that’s your thing.
Compared to its rivals like the Range Rover Vogue or Mercedes Benz GLS, its less luxurious with an inferior ride quality and the overall driving feel would deter the keenest drivers….thankfully most Nigerian drivers pay no attention to details. And when it comes to the pricing, it costs way less than its rivals while still offering some premium driver essentials and luxuries. In my opinion, the Land Cruiser or its smaller sibling, the Prado, are better options compared to minivans as they come standard with 7 seats.
Speaking of the chassis, the Land Cruiser is one of the few SUVs that offer a body on frame chassis setup as most SUV manufacturers opt for the unibody (monocoque) chassis which helps in weight reduction, improved comfort, and way better handling. Other SUVs that come with the body on frame chassis are the Mercedes Benz Gwagons and the Lexus LX SUV lineup which are on the high side of the price bracket…almost double the price of the Land Cruiser.
Add all this together and you’ve got yourself the perfect vehicle for touring the country…that is, if you’re not an enthusiast spirited driver.
Also, check out these few pointers on how to stay sane while driving
Written by Tunde Oyeyode