The Toyota Land Cruiser Namib keeps the retro flame burning

Available in South Africa
by Tom Harrison | Sep 18, 2019
PHOTO: Toyota
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The 70 Series Toyota Land Cruiser hasn’t changed much in the 35 years it’s been on sale. Once available more or less worldwide, nowadays, it’s only sold in parts of Africa, South America, and the Middle East, where emissions and safety regulations aren’t quite as strict as they are in Europe and the US.

And that’s a shame, because the ‘new’ Land Cruiser Namib—a South African special edition named for the world’s largest deserts—looks totally brilliant, don’t you think?

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The double-cab pickup has a 4.5-liter V8 diesel engine making 202hp and 429Nm from basically idle. Power is of course sent to all four wheels—16-inch alloys shod with knobbly Cooper Discoverer tires—through a five-speed manual gearbox with low-range. The suspension has been upgraded by a local specialist, too.

Looks suitably rugged thanks to LED spotlights, a heavy-duty front bumper with headlight protectors and a snorkel for wading, doesn’t it? Inside, things couldn’t be more utilitarian. Well, they could be if Toyota hadn’t bothered with the token touchscreen. Shiny, scratchy plastics mask clever features—a cooled glovebox, special seat covers with reinforced bolsters, and a special overhead console with LED lights and storage for a two-way radio.

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Prices start at the equivalent of just under £50,000 (around P3.26 million). Take into account the fact this thing may well outlive you, your kids, and their kids, and that doesn’t sound so bad.

Were Toyota to find a way of bringing it to other markets (can you imagine—the Namib sitting in a dealer between a Supra and a Wigo), would you get one of these, or a new Land Rover Defender?

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NOTE: This article first appeared on TopGear.com. Minor edits have been made.

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PHOTO: Toyota
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