Toyota Australia expects its freeze on LandCruiser 70 Series orders, announced in July this year, to stay in place for at least another 12 months.
A combination of limited production and booming demand saw wait times for Toyota’s rugged icon blow out into 2024 in some cases, prompting the company to stop taking new orders as it sought to get on top of existing demand.
The frank message this week from Sean Hanley, Toyota Australia’s vice president of sales, marketing and franchise operations, was to not expect any movement on that front in the near future.
“I think it will be at least 12 months before we’re able to even consider opening the books again on 70 [Series],” Mr Hanley told us. “This just fits in with that trust factor and being up front.”
When we asked Mr Hanley why LandCruiser 70 production was falling so far short of demand – it isn’t exactly brimming with semiconductors after all – he suggested huge demand played an even more substantial role.
“It’s capacity and volume…. I mean chips play a role, but it’s also capacity and demand,” decades-long Toyota veteran Hanley said, saying demand right now was “huge, it’s massive”.
“My belief is that all the different incentives that were around through COVID; massive booming agricultural returns right now, mining’s booming, everything that suits LandCruiser 70 is booming…
“And private. It’s had a bit of a surge in the private market too, just quietly. There are enthusiasts out there as well, so to answer your question, it’d be at least 12 months, I think.
“Clearly if things alter and things improve and we get more cars and we can reduce that, of course we will. But at this stage, I don’t see anything within 12 months.”
The situation means that updated 70s detailed a few months ago and due by the end of 2022 – centred around the addition of more modern safety features, as well as a GVM upgrade that re-categorises it as a medium goods vehicle – will be imported to satisfy existing orders for a long time yet, rather than going to new buyers.
In the meantime expect the price of used LandCruiser 70s to spike further, as demand will stay sky-high given the lack of competition. Australia is a top market for the evergreen, unchanging 4×4, among mining fleets, primary producers, overlanders, and 4×4 enthusiasts.