Toyota Shows TJ Cruiser Concept Some California Love

If you happen to swing by Toyota’s 2018 LA Auto Show stand anytime between now and December 9th, you’ll find that it’s not all about the facelifted Prius or the 2020 four-door Corolla Hybrid.

In fact, you’re going to stumble onto something called the TJ Cruiser, which is a concept vehicle whose initials stand for ‘Toolbox’ and ‘Joy’, believe it or not. As for ‘Cruiser’, that term is of course a very established one within Toyota’s automotive portfolio.

What is this thing’s deal?

When Toyota first presented the TJ Cruiser Concept, they stated that it was designed “for drivers with lifestyles where work and play dovetail seamlessly.” It has the roominess of a cargo van and the rugged design of a boxy SUV.

It actually looks so “butch”, it sort of reminds us of the Knight XV, which is a Ford 550 Super Duty-based armored vehicle.

Alas, here are the types of features it has: special protective coating on the hood, roof and fenders, a sturdy suspension system, 20-inch wheels, all-wheel drive, sliding rear doors (like on a van), large load area, deck boards, tie-down points, plus a basic yet modern interior.

The dashboard almost looks like it belongs on some type of futuristic Wrangler, which fans of the “genre” will certainly appreciate. It also looks like something off a Citroen C4 Cactus, but let’s not nitpick too much.

The Japanese automaker based the TJ Cruiser Concept around its Toyota New Global Architecture, or TNGA, and fitted it with a 2.0-liter hybrid powertrain, although full specs remain undisclosed.

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  • matrem

    They showed this at the SF auto show this past week.

  • Six_Tymes

    Does anyone remember the opening scene in the classic movie called planes, trains and automobiles? You know the advertising executives lengthy un-spoken reactions to the ad he is holding in his hand? Well, that is my reaction to this, thing.

    • ErnieB

      Yup.. ugly must be a thing now..

      • assassingtr

        It’s gonna be okay guys. Taste is subjective.

  • Rocket

    Concepts don’t often make second rounds at major auto shows. That Toyota chose to do so tells me that some variation is being considered for production. It’s a Toyota that doesn’t offend me, which I think is pretty cool. And rare these days.

    An even better idea: launch something to compete with the larger 2-row crossovers. About 190″ long, V6, torque-vectoring AWD, and looks that don’t remind anybody of the Venza sounds like a winning formula to me. In other words, Toyota’s version of the Passport.

  • MIL1234

    so rear and front light are reversable ?

    • good eye. that’s pretty neat if there’s a use for it.

      • MIL1234

        economical

  • looks like a concept from the 80’s/90’s, .. kinda getting a VW iD Buzz?

    • Perry F. Bruns

      A Scion xB and an iD Buzz ran off together and made sweet, sweet love.

  • bicepeak

    I want one! Please build it!

  • WE’VE BEEN SEEING A LOT OF UGLY CARS LATELY BUT THIS ON TAKES THE CAKE.

  • PhilMcGraw

    I could honestly see this in some form replacing the Sienna at some point. I think there’s more of a market for a boxy crossover than a minivan.

  • StrangerGP

    Looks awesome, best concept Toyota has shown in years.

  • Adrian Pana

    OMG!….

  • Kaido Alex

    Looks like a 2000s concept car.

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