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Japanese SUVs: review, rating, specifications and reviews

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Japanese SUVs: review, rating, specifications and reviews
Japanese SUVs: review, rating, specifications and reviews

Japanese cars are very popular both in the local market and around the world. And although they are usually more modest than their European counterparts in terms of equipment, their main advantages are considered reliability, performance, and functionality. Here are some classic Japanese off-road vehicles.


Most famous in this class is the Suzuki Jimny. There were also slightly larger Japanese SUVs: Isuzu Vehicross from 1997 to 2001, Daihatsu Rugger from 1993 to 2002, Isuzu Mo (Amigo) from 1989 to 2004, Toyota FJ from 2006 to 2014 Cruiser.

Suzuki Jimny

The model appeared in 1968. During this time, the car has undergone two generational changes. Jimny has a classic off-road design, that is, there is a frame, a plug-in front axle, and a reduction gear. Jimny is equipped with a 1.3 liter gasoline engine. It is enough for a small SUV weighing just over a ton. The interior is very modest, which is acceptable for such an economical model. ATIn Japan, its price is $18,000, in Russia Jimny costs an average of 1,200,000 rubles.

Japanese SUVs

Medium Size

Japanese SUVs of this class are much more common, especially until recently. They include Mitsubishi Pajero and Challenger (Pajero Sport/Montero), Suzuki Escudo (Grand Vitara), Nissan Pathfinder and Terrano, Toyota Land Cruiser Prado, 4Runner/Hilux Surf, Lexus GX, Isuzu Axiom and MU-X.

However, Japanese cars also followed the modern trends of transition to monocoque bodies. SUVs Pajero and Pathfinder lost their frame, and Escudo was discontinued two years ago, Nissan Terrano - in 2006 (now another car is being produced under that name), Isuzu Axiom - in 2004. Thus, only Japanese SUV models such as Challenger, Land Cruiser Prado and 4Runner, MU-X.

Mitsubishi Challenger

This model has been produced since 1996. The Challenger is based on the L200 pickup. This classic scheme involves a frame structure, a dependent rear suspension and a plug-in all-wheel drive. Now the third generation is being produced, presented at the end of last year. It has lost the name Challenger and is called Pajero Sport/Montero Sport. The main engines for this model: 2.4 and 2.5 liter diesel engines. Some markets offer a 3L petrol V6.

Four transmission options available in different markets: 5-speed manual and automatic, 6-speedmechanical, 8-speed automatic. In the third generation of the model, transformations were made towards comfort. Significantly improved interior trim and expanded the list of equipment offered. In the local market, Pajero Sport is offered only with a V6 and an 8-speed gearbox at a price of 2.75 million rubles.

Japanese SUVs

Toyota Land Cruiser Prado

This model has been produced since 1987. Now the fourth generation is on the market, introduced in 2009 and upgraded in 2013. The Land Cruiser Prado has a frame structure and permanent all-wheel drive. It is available in 3 and 5-door body styles. The car is equipped with three engines: 3 l diesel and petrol 2, 7 and 4 l. 5- and 6-speed manual and 5-speed automatic transmissions are available. The cost on the local market starts from 1.94 million rubles.

Japanese SUVs

Lexus GX

This is an improved version of the Land Cruiser Prado. Its latest version, the GX460, produced since 2009, is equipped with a more powerful 4.6-liter V8 petrol engine and a 6-speed automatic transmission. In addition, it differs in design, interior trim and equipment. The price starts from 3.9 million rubles.

Japanese SUVs

Toyota 4Runner

This car has been produced since 1984. Now it is presented in the fifth generation, which appeared on the market in 2009 and underwent restyling in 2014. Moreover, the right-hand drive version (Hilux Surf) was discontinued in 2009

4Runner is based on the Hilux, so the concept is similaron the Mitsubishi Challenger. It also has a frame structure, dependent rear suspension. The model is equipped with only a 4 liter V6 petrol engine and a 5-speed automatic transmission. But two options for all-wheel drive are available: plug-in and permanent.

Like the Challenger, the interior of the current generation 4Runner has been significantly upgraded with more comfort and more equipment. Such Japanese SUVs are not officially sold on the local market. US prices start at $31.5K

Japanese SUV cars

Isuzu MU-X

Also based on a pickup truck (D-Max). Produced since 2013 and is the successor to the similar model MU-7. It has a 7-seater body on the frame. Three 1, 9, 2, 5 and 3 liter diesel engines and four transmission options are available for the MU-X: 5- and 6-speed manual and automatic. Available in 2-drive versions in some markets. Introduced in Australia, Thailand, Philippines, China. Prices in Australia start at around $37,000.

Japanese SUVs prices

Full size

Japan's most famous large SUVs are the Toyota Land Cruiser and Nissan Patrol and their improved versions. There are also models for the North American market: Toyota Sequoia and Nissan Armada. From 1995 to 2002 produced the largest model of Toyota Mega Cruiser.

Toyota Land Cruiser

The car has been produced since 1951. The 9th generation is now on the market. The Land Cruiser has a frame structure with a dependent rear suspension and a permanent fulldrive unit. It is equipped with 8-cylinder diesel engines of 4.5 liters and 4.7 liters, as well as 5.7 liters of gasoline. They are equipped with 5- and 6-speed automatic transmissions. The cost of the car starts from 3.25 million rubles.

Japanese SUV models

Lexus LX

This is an advanced version of the Land Cruiser, introduced in 1996. Since 2007, the third generation has been on the market, upgraded in 2015. Two V8 engines from the Land Cruiser range are available for the LX570: 4.5L diesel and 5.7 l gasoline. The first is equipped with a 5-, the second - with a 6-speed automatic transmission. It differs from the Land Cruiser in an improved interior, advanced equipment and a redesigned design. The cost starts from 5.88 million rubles.

New Japanese SUV

Nissan Patrol

The model has been produced since the same year as the main competitor Land Cruiser. The sixth generation, which is now in production, was also introduced in 2010. In 2014, they upgraded. The design of the Patrol is slightly more advanced than that of the Toyota counterpart. Both suspensions are independent, and the engine is the most powerful in the 5.6L V8 class. The cost in Russia starts from 3.97 million rubles.

Japanese SUVs

Infiniti QX

Patrol 2010 also has an improved counterpart. However, such a model appeared only in 2010. The QX4, produced from 1997 to 2003, was based on the Nissan Pathfinder platform, therefore it was a mid-size SUV. QX56 2004-2010 was an analogue of the Nissan Armada. Current generation, renamed in 2013 toThe QX80 is identical in design to the Patrol and differs in equipment and design. The price starts from 4.19 million rubles.

New Japanese SUV

Toyota Sequoia

This model was created in 2001 for the North American market based on the Tundra pickup. It is currently the manufacturer's largest SUV. At the same time, at a cost, it ranks between the Land Cruiser and 4Runner. Since 2008, the second generation has been in production. The car has a frame and a plug-in all-wheel drive. It is equipped with a 4.7 and 5.7 liter V8 engine and 5- and 6-speed automatic transmissions. US prices start around $45,000.

Japanese SUV models

Nissan Armada

In concept and technical characteristics, it was originally similar to the Sequoia. It was also created for the North American market based on the Titan pickup truck in 2004. However, a new Japanese SUV was introduced earlier this year. Patrol became the base for it. In fact, this is the same car with a slightly modified design. The only technical difference is the presence of a rear-wheel drive version. Thus, the car has become more perfect than the Toyota analogue. Therefore, its initial cost in the US is $4,100 higher.

Japanese SUVs


The popularity of Japanese SUVs can be judged by sales. Suzuki Jimny takes 8th place in the B + class, Toyota Land Cruiser Prado and Land Cruiser are leaders in the E + and F + classes, respectively, Lexus LX is in F + in 4th place, Nissan Patrol is in 6th place, Infiniti QX 80 is in 7th place. And this is without taking into account load-bearing modelsbody, which occupy an even larger share of the market.

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