Toyota says Australians’ increasing awareness of environmental impacts led to it axing its V8-powered LandCruiser 70 Series, but this same “community sentiment” won’t mean the death of the US-built Tundra pickup.

    The company cited both this “community sentiment” and government regulations as the reason for the LandCruiser 70 Series V8’s discontinuation.

    When asked how a circa 6m-long, 2m-wide American pickup could be justified amid this sentiment, Toyota Australia vice president of sales, marketing and franchise operations Sean Hanley said simply, “It’s a one-motor hybrid.”

    “I understand that, but also there’s a market. And as part of the multi-pathway strategy, our commitment is to bring vehicles to market as best we can that suit the requirements of that market,” he said.

    “There’s a market there. It’s a one-motor hybrid so it’s playing its role, so I think it’ll be fine.”

    Mr Hanley said Australians expect companies to be aware of the environmental impacts of their products and manufacturing footprint and it was this awareness, plus government regulations in the form of the New Vehicle Efficiency Standard (NVES), that sounded the death knell for the V8 70 Series.

    “We believe that the community expects that we will reduce our CO2 footprint, and we need to be able to show definite steps and definite product countermeasures to do that,” said Mr Hanley.

    “Market sentiment is an expectation that companies will take care and be aware of their environmental commitments.”

    The Tundra hasn’t officially launched in Australia yet, though Toyota is conducting what it’s calling the Tundra Insider Program.

    This sees 300 potential customers pay $2500 a month for a full-service lease of the Tundra as part of a “real-world evaluation and validation program”, reporting back to Toyota about their experience.

    This project has been in the works since 2019, and Walkinshaw Automotive Group has been enlisted to remanufacture the 300 Tundras included in this pilot program at a facility in Dandenong, Victoria.

    Mr Hanley said the trial has been going well, and that he hopes to have some news by the end of the year.

    Unlike the previous-generation Tundra, which was never sold here, the new pickup goes without a V8.

    Instead, all Tundras being assessed here pack Toyota’s i-Force Max powertrain, mating a twin-turbocharged 3.4-litre V6 petrol engine with an electric motor and a nickel metal hydride battery pack.

    Total system outputs are 326kW of power and 790Nm of torque.

    MORE: Everything Toyota LandCruiser 70 Series
    MORE: Everything Toyota Tundra

    MORE: Toyota LandCruiser 70 Series V8 axed, but manual will live on

    William Stopford

    William Stopford is an automotive journalist based in Brisbane, Australia. William is a Business/Journalism graduate from the Queensland University of Technology who loves to travel, briefly lived in the US, and has a particular interest in the American car industry.

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