Spy photos of a Toyota Land Cruiser have been caught in the US with Illinois manufacturer’s license plates, fueling speculation that the iconic SUV may be preparing to return to North America.
A Facebook user shared images showing the 2023 Land Cruiser GR Sport photographed in the back of a transport truck along with a bmw m4 and a couple of Jeep Wranglers. Close-up images capture prominent GR branding and part red leather interior.
Toyota withdrew the J200 Land Cruiser from the North American market in 2021 following poor sales and chose not to import its 2022 J300 replacement, offering only the Lexus LX. Both models traded in their predecessors’ naturally aspirated V8s for a 3.4-litre twin-turbo V6 delivering 409 hp (415 PS).
Could the Toyota Land Cruiser return to the US?
However, in late 2022, Jack Hollis, Toyota Motor North America’s executive vice president of sales, hinted that the rugged truck might have unfinished business on the mainland. “Will we ever do it? I’d probably say yes,” he replied when Motor Trend asked if Toyota would bring the Land Cruiser back to US showrooms.
“Obviously Land Cruiser is a very important part of our heritage and has done a great job,” Hollis continued. Adding: “And I’ll be watching it, absolutely. Have I seen designs, thoughts and hopes? Yes. But nothing to announce. It’s still far away.”
This was only last December, and Toyota’s Japanese production team is already struggling to keep up with demand from other parts of the world for the new version of the truck, so it seems unlikely that Toyota will announce US sales. . at the moment.
With no presence at next week’s Chicago Auto Show, where Toyota plans to unveil the 2024 Grand Highlander, it could be that Toyota North America is simply doing some internal evaluations of the 2023 Land Cruiser.
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