2017 Toyota Prado

A list of the top mid-size SUVs is never complete without including one of the Toyota Land Cruiser’s lineup of models. For about half a century, Toyota has been molding some of the best mid-sized luxury SUVs in the industry. One such model is the Toyota Prado. Prado’s production commenced in 1984 and was first sold in 1985.  Since then, the five-door SUV has been roaming our streets and conquering our off-roads. The current model is its 5th generation.

The new model will receive mild touches both on the interior and exterior as well as get a new engine. All this is meant to help the model maintain its strong foothold on the Australia, Japan and North America where it is very popular as well as increase its presence in other markets. The vehicle is offered in four trim levels which are GX, VX, Kakadu and GXL.

2017 Toyota Prado Exterior

The 2017 Toyota Prado will be based on the J150 platform. The exterior will receive a significant redesign to make it more menacing and appealing. At the front, it will feature a redesigned 5-bar chrome plated grille. The grille will be flanked by a pair of LED headlights (halogen headlights will be offered as an option). The lower bumper is integrated with LED fog lights and large air intakes.

The taillights also utilize LED technology. The vehicle also sports a new roof spoiler and roof rails that make it look different from the outgoing model. The new vehicle as with its predecessors will ride on 17-inch wheels though the new model’s wheel arches will be slightly wider. New Prado at some markets will be offered with three or five doors.

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2017 Toyota Prado Interior

Taking a look inside will reveal an elegant cabin with a cool feeling. The cabin has a lot of room which comfortably accommodates 7 passengers in a three- row seating arrangement and still leaves plenty of cargo space. Fine leather is the standard upholstery material. It dashboard, shifter and steering wheel are also wrapped in leather.

The vehicle also features a 7.0-inch touch-screen which controls the vehicle’s infotainment system. There is also a 4.2-inch LCD screen on the instrument panel which replaces analogue gauges. The most up-date technological features are also featured; they include Bluetooth connectivity, USB/AUX ports and Wi-Fi connectivity. For entertainment, expect the vehicle to come with a premium sound system. Rear passengers will also have access to LCD screens placed on the headrests of the front seats.

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Safety is an area the Prado excels in. The 2017 models are fully equipped with safety features that not only protect its occupants but also pedestrians. The vehicle’s safety system is made so as to prevent accidents occurring in the first place.  These features include; vehicle stability control, active traction control, Safe-T-Cell (a wisely designed crumple zone), 7 SRS airbags, a rearview camera, back guide monitor and parking sensors. It also features active braking system with intelligence, blind spot monitoring and a pre-collision safety system.

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Engine and performance

Toyota is yet to release official information regarding the 2017 Prado engine specs. According to rumors, the new model will have two drive-trains, one that sips petrol and the other diesel.

The diesel engine will be a new unit which is set to replace the 3.0 L diesel engine on the outgoing models. It will be a turbocharged 2.8 L, 4-cylinder engine which also powers the 8th-generation Toyota Hilux. This engine produces 174 hp @ 3,400 rpm and 331 lb-ft of torque from 1,600-2,400 rpm. The engine will be paired with a 6-speed manual gearbox or a 6-speed automatic transmission system.

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The petrol engine is a 4.0 L VVT-I, V-6 which is capable of 271 hp and 281 lb-ft of torque. According to rumors, this engine will be mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission. The second petrol engine is a 2.7 liter 4-cylinder, 16-valve, DOHC, VVT-I with 164 hp.  The models will be offered in AWD configuration. Details on fuel efficiency, acceleration and top speed will be announced at a later date.

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Price and release date

Expect the new changes to affect the new Prado’s price albeit slightly. The current base model, the GX starts at $ 54,990 while the top-of-the-range Kakadu carries a price tag of $ 83,490. Expect the price to go up by between $ 2,000 and $ 5,000. The model is expected to hit dealer showrooms in the last quarter of this year (2017).

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Competition

The 2017 Toyota Prado will compete with other impressive mid-size SUVs such as the Ford Explorer, Mitsubishi Pajero, Nissan Pathfinder and Mercedes Benz GL-Class.

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