By on October 19, 2020

The Toyota Land Cruiser is dead. Long live the Toyota Land Cruiser?

The saga of the Land Cruiser is getting confusing. First, we picked up on reporting from Motor Authority that suggested the LC will soon be sent to the great junkyard in the sky, although the Lexus version will soldier on. Part of that report suggested that there is a new generation for the Land Cruiser on the way, but perhaps not to be sold here.

Now Carscoops is reporting that Toyota has plans for a Gazoo Racing trim for the next Land Cruiser, although it doesn’t mention which markets might get the new Land Cruiser. It just speaks very generally about Toyota’s GR plans, quoting an Australian exec who vaguely leaves open the possibility that Toyota could give the LC the GR treatment.

From there, the post suggests that a GR LC would have enhanced off-road abilities and may or may not get a twin-turbo 4.0-liter V8.

If that seems like speculation based off of a quote and inferences based on other product plans, well, it is. It’s not exactly the same kind of reporting that leans on more concrete information, such as patents or a leak from a dealer meeting.

It’s a form of journalism that seems common to the Internet, and not just within automotive – sports fans will note that plenty of blogs get clicks by speculating on trades and free-agent moves, using vague rumors and interpretations of tweets.

This kind of journalism isn’t unethical or anything like that, but it’s not particularly informative, either. It’s basically a writer saying “I’ve heard this rumor, so this could happen, let me think it over in a blog post, and put it out there for the reader because he/she might find it interesting. And if people click to read the story, that’s a bonus.” It’s fun to let minds wander, but it doesn’t really prove much one way or another.

In this case, it doesn’t prove a GR Land Cruiser is on the way – just that there likely will be a next-gen Land Cruiser sold in at least some markets, and Toyota seems to be interested in giving many of its models GR trims (again, in some markets), and therefore it seems logical that Toyota might offer a GR Land Cruiser.

By the way, the small side lesson in journalism wasn’t a shot at Carscoops or anyone else – speculative wonderings aren’t uncommon when covering an industry whose future draws interest, whether it’s future cars in automotive or player movement in sports. We’ve done it, and by aggregating Carscoops, I am doing it now.

It’s merely a reminder that speculation is just that, and just because it seems logical that the Land Cruiser might get a GR trim in the future, it doesn’t mean it will.

We still don’t know if it will return to America in any form.

That said, if the idea of an off-road-prepped version of a redesigned Land Cruiser with turbo power intrigues you, you now have reason to daydream.

[Image: Toyota]

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