Toyota Kluger Review

Toyota Kluger ReviewThe Toyota Kluger, called the Toyota Highlander in most markets, is a midsize SUV that is built on the Camry platform.

It was first released in Australia in 2003, but it was relatively unsuccessful. However, it has since gained ground in the market. The Kluger was first produced in 2000 and the second generation was released in 2008.

A third generation is planned for release in 2014. There are a number of different models available, a variety of engine types and manual or automatic transmission.

The Kluger can seat 7 adults and this makes it popular with larger families. Let’s take a closer look at Toyota’s entry into the midsize SUV market.

Comfort and Interior
The interior of the Kluger is good without being impressive. You will certainly feel that this car is due for an update soon.

That being said the Kluger has massive internal space and it really feels like you are driving a much larger vehicle. The Kluger also features great all round visibility and reversing camera for added safety. The steering wheel is a fantastic position and the instrumentation is well set out. The seating is comfortable and there is plenty of leg room in the back.

There is an option for seven seats, which makes this an impressive midsize SUV that would be perfect for medium to large families.

Ride and Handling
The ride of the Toyota Kluger is very soft, and perhaps a bit too soft for my tastes. The handling is very good, as you would expect from a vehicle in this price range, although I can’t help but feel that this could have been tuned slightly better.

That being said, it is a fun car to drive and most people won’t notice the slight flaws in this area. Off road driving in the vehicle is a lot of fun and it is very capable in this area.

Performance
The Kluger has impressive acceleration, which is great for overtaking and highway merging. The transmission is excellent and it can even detect if you’re travelling up or down hill to hold the gears longer. It is one of the most responsive transmissions tested this year.

It is also a very capable off-road vehicle, but there are better cars in the class for off-road driving. The engine is a little noisy under full acceleration, which was a little surprising but not a deal breaker.

Pros

  • Great engine that delivers solid performance and power.
  • Heaps of space and seating for up to seven people.

Cons

  • Dated and somewhat bland styling.
  • Soft ride.
  • Noisy engine under full acceleration.

The Toyota Kluger is a fantastic midsize SUV, but it is a competitive market. This means that the fourth generation will have to be very impressive to sway new car buyers.

This generation is good, but the slight spec bumps and redesigns don’t cover the fact that this model was first produced in 2007. There is no doubt that the Kluger is ready for an update!

That being said, it is still a fine midsize SUV that is capable of mid range off road driving. However, it makes sense to wait for the next generation to be released if you are not looking to buy immediately.

Image source: http://www.toyota.com.au