Toyota’s FJ Cruiser replacement appears to be one step closer, with the Japanese carmaker applying for a trademark in the US of the name ‘TJ Cruiser’.
The new model, should it eventuate, will almost certainly have been previewed through the recent FT-4X concept.
In concept form at least, the FT-4X (pictured, top of page) looks to have the goods to pick up the FJ Cruiser’s fan base and continue to serve Toyota’s niche off-roader market.
The FJ Cruiser (pictured, below) was an instant success in Australia, despite the lack of a diesel-powered option, with more than 11,000 units finding homes.
Sales were also healthy initially in the US and Japan, but slowed as the model neared its final days.
The model has officially retired as production ended in August last year, but a handful of units remain in Australia for those keen to snap up the last of the last.
Toyota apparently sees value in a replacement though, even if it serves more as an ‘image’ car rather than a volume-seller.
Should the TJ appear only in the same markets as the FJ - Australia, the US and Japan - Australia’s call for a diesel model will probably remain unanswered.
If the FT-4X is anything to go by, at least some of the FJ’s nostalgic looks will make way for an edgier small wagon perhaps aimed at a younger audience.
The FJ was styled as a modern tribute to Toyota’s FJ40 LandCruiser, but the carmaker may leave the past behind with a new TJ model. Watch this space.
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