The day after snowboarding, I took the big Toyota to a setting where it'd probably feel more at home: southern Orange County. In suburbia/well-kept beachside heaven, the Land Cruiser coasted and glided over what few road imperfections existed. Calling upon the 5.7-liter V-8 brings forth 381 horsepower and 401 pound-feet of torque, which is more than capable for expeditions to Whole Foods and picking up the trendiest living room set from Z Gallerie.

Full-time four-wheel drive and devoted off-roading features like Crawl Control, a lockable center differential, and an ECT switch for the six-speed automatic transmission presumably make the Land Cruiser a formidable opponent off the beaten path. But, like Mr. Loh, I was unable to sample the finer points of a vehicle that would ideally be defined by name alone.

"The last time I drove this model it was at SUOTY in 2008?" Loh rhetorically asks. "That was a lot of fun because I let the thing creep up a hill real slow using ascent control and then promptly got it in a dangerous sideways condition. No such excitement this time around because I wasn't able to play with any of the cool toys. All I did was drive home..."

In its current package, we're looking at a dedicated full-size luxury SUV that will no doubt see more street than trail time. It certainly pushes all the right buttons and has all the latest in fancy doodads from the driver's seat. But it's simply not the Land Cruiser we'll remember 60 years from now.


2010 Toyota Land Cruiser
BASE PRICE $66,780
VEHICLE LAYOUT Front-engine, 4WD, 8-pass, 4-door SUV
ENGINE 5.7L/381-hp/401-lb-ft DOHC 32-valve V-8
TRANSMISSION 6-speed automatic
CURB WEIGHT 5700 lb (mfr)
WHEELBASE 112.2 in
LENGTH X WIDTH X HEIGHT 194.9 x 77.6 x 74.0 in
0-60 MPH 6.5 sec (MT est)
EPA CITY/HWY FUEL ECON 13/18 mpg
ENERGY CONSUMPTION, CITY/HWY 259/187 kW-hrs/100 miles (est)
CO2 EMISSIONS 1.31 lb/mile (est)
ON SALE IN U.S. Currently