The Cheapest Way To Buy A 200 Series Toyota Land Cruiser
The discontinuation full-size 200 Series helped the Land Cruiser hold its value, however, its luxury twin has flown under the radar
When it comes to a blend of luxury and capability there are few cars that do it as well as the Toyota Land Cruiser. It has a long list of off-road achievements and it has remained a strong, sturdy, and reliable two to three-row SUV across its lifespan. The 200 series, however, has struggled with this identity.
The Toyota Land Cruiser has always been marketed as a high-end off-roader that is extremely capable but offers you comfort and luxury, and it’s always been priced that way too. Unfortunately, the 200 series fell short on the luxury side of things while maintaining its high price.
Luckily, there is a simple solution. The Toyota Land Cruiser 200 Series had a luxury twin, the Lexus LX 570, and that twin is currently cheaper to buy on the second-hand market. This surprising twist means that you can essentially take home a Lexus LX for a fraction of the price and with more features.
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The Lexus LX 570 and the Toyota Land Cruiser are comparable cars in a lot of ways. They share a lot of the same parts and run on very similar platforms. To many people’s despair, the Land Cruiser was pulled from the U.S. market back in 2021, and this had a huge impact on valuations. Toyota initially said that the Land Cruiser would not be returning to North America. This means that the desirability of the Land Cruiser shot up too, meaning the LX can be found for significantly less.
The Lexus LX and the Land Cruiser have run side-by-side for decades now, with the Lexus being the less capable, high luxury option and the Land Cruiser being the choice for those a little more rough and tumble. As time went on, the Toyota started to encroach on the Lexus’ territory a little bit and vice versa. The LX, however, does remain the more luxurious option but the gap in their capability has closed significantly.
What’s surprising is how easy it is to find examples of the Lexus LX 570 that are in similar conditions but actually cheaper than the Land Cruiser. Searching used markets revealed that even when it comes to the 2021 model, the Lexus can be picked up for the same price, and even cheaper in some instances. These models have similar mileage, the same level of wear-and-tear and the same amount of seating rows.
If you look at even older examples of the 200 series Land Cruiser and the 200 series LX, there are some wild price differences. Looking at examples from 2015 that have been taken care of but have around 100,000 miles on the clock, some LX 570s go for around $10,000 dollars less than a Land Cruiser. This price difference is insane given the fact that you’re essentially getting a car on the same platform with the same parts for a fraction of the price.
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Lexus is, essentially, the luxury wing of Toyota, with a lot of their cars sharing parts and platforms. This is the case with the Land Cruiser and the LX 570. They both run on the same platform and share a plethora of parts, essentially filling the same area in the market. Toyota, over the years, specced the Land Cruiser so high that it essentially entered the same territory as its Lexus counterpart.
Toyota Land Cruiser
Lexus LX 570
5.7-Liter Naturally Aspirated V-8
5.7-Liter Naturally Aspirated V-8
Entry, Departure, and Breakover
25°, 20°, 23°
32°, 24°, 21°
The first and one of the most important parts that these two SUVs share is their powertrain. Both luxury off-roaders have a nearly identical 5.7-liter naturally aspirated V-8. They’ve been running this powertrain for years. This engine provides both cars with the power and the torque to go anywhere. The Lexus takes premium fuel and so it pumps out slightly more horsepower and torque than the Toyota. The two cars run an identical eight-speed automatic gearbox. They are exactly the same in every way, down to the gear ratios. The transmission works incredibly well and helps both cars achieve some excellent acceleration for their size.
They both feature a slew of off-road equipment including a highly capable low-end transfer case which helps them achieve overlanding glory. This is as well as a Torsen locking differential. The LX matches the Land Cruiser in a lot of ways off the road including having active four-wheel drive, a high mode which increases the ride height, a crawl mode, and a multi-terrain monitor. The main area that the Land Cruiser has the LX 570 beat is entry, departure, and break-over angles and towing capacity.
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It's easy to believe that the reason the Land Cruiser was discontinued was in part because the Lexus LX 570 cannibalized a lot of the Land Cruiser’s sales due to their similarities. There was also a reason that the production of the LX570 continued into 2022 and the Land Cruiser took a break. While the Land Cruiser has a slight edge when it comes to off-roading, it also markets itself as a high-end SUV and area where the Lexus has it beat.
In terms of performance and handling neither feels particularly athletic. However, the Lexus has a slightly smoother ride. The Land Cruiser suffers from a lot of body roll, you’d expect better at this price point, and you get better with the Lexus.
Step inside the cabin of both cars and you’ll see some of the big differences start to shine through. While the Land Cruiser 200 Series does come fitted with a ton of high-quality materials, it looks incredibly dated and definitely not up to the standard that other luxury SUVs set. The Lexus LX 570 on the other hand Everything is just neater and more pleasing to look at.
When it comes to the infotainment system, the story is much the same. The Land Cruiser’s is definitely getting older and is not quite as user-friendly as the Lexus’. The LX 570 also made the shift to having the controller for the system near the gear shifter, a trend that many have been jumping on in recent times.
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So, we have established that the 200 series LX 570 has off-road capabilities that are pretty close to the Land Cruiser, that the Lexus feels more like a premium SUV that lives up to the price you pay, and that the Lexus feels better to drive on the road. Thus, the Lexus is actually the better vehicle.
Where the Land Cruiser used to stand a chance because it was significantly cheaper, Toyota inflated the features so heavily that it cost nearly the same as the Lexus when new. Because the Land Cruiser was discontinued and its value has popped up quite a bit and this means that its luxury twin is less expensive to buy, especially when you look at older options.
When you compare the two side-by-side it's hard to see the merits of the Land Cruiser in this generation, especially given their price right now. If you’re looking for a full-size SUV with legendary off-road capability that will still feel posh on the road, the Lexus LX is the clear choice between the two.
Tyler Dupont has had a deep passion for cars his entire life. That coupled with his love to write has brought him to TopSpeed to share his love of the automotive world.