I’ve been asked a few times if Toyota still makes the FJ Cruiser. I had to do a little research on this one, and here is what I found.
The answer might surprise you.
Does Toyota Still Make the FJ Cruiser?
The good news is Toyota still makes the FJ Cruiser. It is just not offered in the US auto market any longer but there are ways to get a new FJ Cruiser and have it shipped to the US.
After being released for sale to the U.S. market in March 2006, the Toyota FJ Cruiser quickly became an off-roader fan favorite. Sadly, after selling the FJ Cruiser for eight years in North America, Toyota opted to no longer sell the SUV in the United States.
When Was the Last FJ Cruiser Made?
The 2014 FJ Cruiser was the last model to be sold in the U.S. automotive market. The 2014 model continued to sell in Australia until 2017. Sales of the FJ Cruiser were discontinued in Japan on January 31, 2018.
In 2013, Toyota introduced the FJ Cruiser Trail Teams Ultimate Edition. Touted as the toughest and most capable FJ Cruiser ever produced, Toyota only built 2,500 units of the commemorative final edition model. The Trail Teams Ultimate Edition featured four-wheel drive, active traction control (A-TRAC), and Toyota’s trademarked vehicle skid control (VSC) system to enhance stability.
One Generation Model
From the onset of its unveiling at international auto shows in 2003, Toyota announced the FJ Cruiser would be produced as a one-generation model.
Toyota’s goal was to provide a limited production run of an affordable sport utility vehicle to U.S. outdoor enthusiasts who enjoy exploring off-road.
Toyota achieved that goal, selling more than 200,000 FJ models in the U.S. over an eight year span from 2006 through 2014.
Before the big reveal on where the upgraded 2020 FJ Cruiser is being sold, let us take a look at why the FJ Cruiser is so beloved in the U.S.
Classic Model Redesign
The FJ Cruiser’s retro style design pays homage to Toyota’s 1960s era Land Cruiser FJ40. The 2006-2014 models still offered consumers a vintage look.
Yet, the spinoff’s interior, exterior, and off-roading handling capabilities boasted impressive, modern upgrades. The FJ’s new designers engineered a SUV that not only possessed character and charm but also looked sportier and performed well in all types of harsh terrain.
Notable Original Design Changes
The FJ Cruiser’s new designers kept the boxy body style of the legendary FJ40 but rounded off the roof’s square corners. The exterior was enhanced with a two-one color keyed body and white rooftop.
Skid plates were affixed to the underbody of the vehicle to prevent damage to critical components. The FJ Cruiser sat high with enough ground clearance to absorb road shocks and tackle any driving situation.
The redesigned FJ Cruiser easily plowed through mud, sand, rocks, and water. The frame rail was designed to withstand structural damage caused by the vehicle climbing rocks and crossing streams.
The FJ Cruiser was outfitted with 17-inch off-road wheels. A full-size spare tire was mounted on the rear door. Other exterior features included a rear liftgate, halogen headlamps, LED daytime running lights, black bumper trim, and power-folding outside mirrors.
Every FJ Cruiser was equipped with auto-dimming rearview mirrors, an integrated backup camera, and water-resistant fabric seats.
Analog instrument meters, a digital clock, and map lights complemented the dash board.
The all-weather flooring and 60/40 tumble split rear seats with removable cushions and a fold-down rear bench seat were great for hauling equipment.
Off-road adventurers were impressed with the FJ Cruiser’s 4,700 lb. towing capacity.
The drive train employed rear and four-wheel drive for better traction. Owners had the option of a manual or automatic transmission with overdrive to achieve better fuel efficiency.
Even though the 4.0 L V6 engine did not provide a lot of horsepower at 260 hp, the overall output was comparable to other SUVs in its class.
What Owners Liked and Disliked
When compared to other off road SUVs in its class, the FJ Cruiser ranked high in body style, stability in rough conditions, and design of gauges and instruments.
After 90 days of driving in all conditions, owners were unimpressed with rear visibility and the frame was prone to rusting. The 2007 model received the most complaints about transmission problems.
Toyota’s FJ engineers paid attention to the complaints about the shuddering and cleared up any transmission issues in the FJ 2010 – 2014 models.
The FJ Cruiser is rated highly reliable, with its great resale value and low annual repair costs.
Numerous car and driver magazines state the frequency and severity of repairs are below average when compared with other SUVs in its class. The annual maintenance cost for the 2013 and 2014 FJ models is $506.
In 2007, Toyota FJ Cruiser ranked first on the list of “Top 10 Trucks and SUVs” of the year. The FJ Cruiser continued to impress and won “Best Off-Road SUV for the Money” in 2010.
The 2013 and 2014 FJ models received the “Best Resale Value Award” in their respective years. The later FJ models retain more than half of their original values after five years on the road.
The 2013 and 2014 models also received accolades for fuel efficiency and low maintenance costs. In 2014, the FJ Cruiser was voted the “Most Dependable SUV” in its class.
Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price(MSRP)
Brand new, the 2007 FJ Cruiser’s base price started at $22,555 without all the features. The MSRP for the 2007 fully loaded model was listed at $35,000.
By 2014, the suggested MSRP was a little over $29,000 for the 4-wheel drive model. The 2014 fully loaded showroom model was priced around $36,000.
Since the FJ Cruiser is now back in high demand and resale valuation is excellent, there is a good chance car consumers looking to purchase a used FJ Cruiser will spend close to the purchase price for a 2013 or 2014 model with low mileage.
Used or Certified Toyota FJ Cruisers for Sale
It is best to explore all your options when looking to buy a quality, used FJ Cruiser.
To get the best price and those must-have features, shoppers should compare listings from local and online dealers. A certified pre-owned FJ Cruiser offers the best of both worlds. It costs less than a new car and is backed with a manufacturer warranty.
Why Did Toyota Cancel the FJ Cruiser?
Toyota stopped selling the popular FJ Cruiser in 2014 after years of drastic declines in U.S. sales. In its debut year, the Cruiser sold an impressive 56,000 units.
Between 2010 and 2014, FJ Cruiser sales plummeted to an average of 14,000 units annually. Automotive industry insiders say competitive pricing and more appealing designs in the SUV market caused the FJ Cruiser to lose its mass appeal among consumers.
Countries That Sell the FJ Cruiser
Currently, the 2020 FJ Cruiser is available for sale in Chile, South Africa, the United Arab Emirates, and the Philippines.
How To Buy A New Toyota FJ Cruiser In The United States (Sort Of)
The neoclassic off-roader still sells extremely well overseas. Interested buyers can pay to import a 2020 FJ Cruiser from the United Arab Emirates to the United States, as long as the purchase price and terms of shipping are met.
2020 Model Upgrades
The FJ Cruiser 2020 model features updated audio and infotainment systems that support Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
The upgraded FJ offers a built-in air compressor to re-inflate tires after driving over rough terrain.
Design engineers also equipped the off-roader with a second fuel tank for long trips.
Cost for 2020 Model
The design of the 2020 FJ Cruiser is almost unchanged from its 2014 model. However, the purchase price has risen.
The new FJ Cruiser starts at $40,021 USD in the United Arab Emirates and $37,307 USD in South Africa.
Does Toyota Plan to Bring Back the FJ Cruiser?
Brand executives emphatically state, there are no plans to start selling the 2020 FJ Cruiser in the United States.
The FJ Cruiser model has been officially retired from the North American market. There are talks of unveiling a smaller, off-road version of the popular SUV one day in the future.