Toyota’s new TJ Cruiser concept unveiled

Posted on Oct 7, 2017 by

Japanese giant mushes together a with an to create the TJ Cruiser making its world debut at the this month

toyota tj cruiser concept 3

It’s quite remarkable that no one has thought of it yet, but ready for the Tokyo motor show starting next month Toyota is preparing to unveil a minivan slash SUV thing called the TJ Cruiser.

Okay, if we actually look back we can find a few rare off-roading minivans such as the Mitsubishi Delica 4×4 and the Isuzu Midi 4×4, but Toyota seems to be revitalising this lost segment and why not — people are buying SUVs, and they are buying minivans, so the TJ Cruiser gives you the option of two in one.

Although just a for now, the TJ does explore this new genre for Toyota and could potentially go into production for select markets. It’d do well for lifestyle-ey type buyers, Toyota says, who could put the van-sized interior to good use with the completely flat reclining seats.

To maximise space the TJ doesn’t look like much other than a box on wheels, but there’s purpose in the design with those huge wheels and tyres, as well as scratch-resistant coating contrasting a few panels like the roof, bonnet and tailgate.

Inside the ‘SUVan’ you can lay out the seats for a three-meter long floor, with Toyota reminding us that’s just enough for a surfboard to go in, let alone smaller things like bicycles. Designers thought of it all adding tie-down points all around, and a passenger seat that flips around to become a storage cubby hole. Like a proper van, the TJ also has a sliding door so you can easily load things and people through the side.

Toyota says the car could be built around the company’s TNGA modular platform (Toyota New Global Architecture) that already serves in the latest Corolla and Camry. Power is courtesy of a 2.0-litre four-cylinder hybrid system driving either the front wheels or all four corners.

Sizewize the TJ’s looks play a trick, because as butch as it seems this thing is about a full foot shorter than something like a Toyota RAV4. Lower and wider too. And if you’re wondering about the name, there’s no need to dwell on the significance of Toyota’s Cruiser suffix, but the TJ stands for ‘Toolbox’ and ‘Joy’ according to the maker. Now you know.

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