Toyota FJ Cruiser Gains Significant Safety Features For 2008

October 1, 2007 – Torrance, CA - The Toyota FJ Cruiser, which melds the brand's off-road legacy with distinct heritage design in a modern SUV, gains standard front seat-mounted side airbags and first- and second-row side curtain airbags for 2008. A new, optional Off-Road Package further bolster's FJ Cruiser's already impressive capability.

With styling cues reminiscent of Toyota's famed FJ40 4x4 utility vehicle, sold in the U.S. from 1960 to 1983, the FJ Cruiser offers a youthful, contemporary spirit and employs the same state-of-the-art, power, comfort, safety, and convenience technology available in all Toyota SUVs. The original FJ40, which during its production life served around the world as the safari and expedition vehicle of choice, is today a sought-after collectable.

The newly optional Off-Road Package prepares the 2008 FJ Cruiser for demanding off-pavement excursions and includes unique 16-inch alloy wheels with 265/75R16 BFG Rugged Trail tires, trail-tuned Bilstein® shock absorbers, a cyclone pre-air cleaner, and a rear differential lock that works in conjunction with the active traction control (A-TRAC) system.

"The FJ Cruiser is one of the most serious off-road capable SUVs available today, yet it delivers all the quality and value expected from any Toyota and is suitably refined for everyday driving," said Jim Lentz, Toyota Motor Sales executive vice president.

The five-passenger FJ Cruiser was initially designed as a concept vehicle at Toyota's Calty Design Research in Newport Beach, Calif. Heritage design features include the front grille, which ties its two round, five-inch headlights together in much the same way the FJ40's headlights and grille were integrated; its hood and fender contours; and a rear-mounted and exposed full-size spare tire with an off-center license-plate-mounting location.

Color choices for the FJ Cruiser include Titanium Metallic, Black Diamond, Sun Fusion, Voodoo Blue and the all-new, Brick Red and Sandstorm Metallic. The white roof cap and wrap-around rear side windows were FJ40 signature design features.

Chassis and Suspension
The FJ Cruiser's tough, wide stance is based around a frame and front-and-rear suspension systems adapted from those found on the Toyota 120-Series Prado (Land Cruiser Prado in some markets). The frame is a boxed steel ladder-braced unit to which is mounted the FJ Cruiser's welded steel body. Double-wishbone independent front suspension offers 7.87 inches of wheel travel for outstanding suspension articulation. Its geometry is adapted for excellent road feel and ride comfort.

The solid rear axle uses a four-link coil-spring suspension system with a lateral rod, tubular shock absorbers, and an anti-sway bar. This system provides 9.1 inches of wheel travel. The disc-brake system uses ventilated 12.6-inch front and 12.3-inch rear rotors.

FJ Cruiser employs a variable-ratio, hydraulically assisted rack-and-pinion steering system. Standard wheels are 17-inch steel, with 17-inch, six-spoke aluminum wheels available as an option. The Off-Road Package uses 16-inch five-spoke alloys and taller-profile rugged trail tires. With the FJ Cruiser's standard 32-inch tires, ground clearance is 9.6 inches (8.7 inches for 4x2 models). Approach and departure angles are 34 degrees/30 degrees for the 4x4 FJ Cruiser and 32/29 for the 4x2 version. Maximum towing capacity with the optional Class Four receiver hitch is 5,000 pounds.

Powerful V6 and Choice of Transmissions
The FJ Cruiser is powered by a DOHC 4.0-liter V6 engine that produces 239 horsepower and 278 lb.-ft. of peak torque. A Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i) system – technology unheard of in the FJ40's heyday – ensures a broad torque curve for easy cruising on or off-road.

The V6 offers a pleasing exhaust note, while special sound-absorbing material under the engine cover helps keep the cabin quiet. The FJ Cruiser meets the stringent LEV II/Tier 2 Bin 5 emissions certification.

The FJ Cruiser 4x4 offers a choice between an electronically shifted five-speed automatic transmission and a six-speed manual transmission; the 4x2 model is equipped exclusively with a 5-speed automatic transmission.

The six-speed manual transmission is designed for shifting ease. The automatic transmission varies the transmission's shifting pattern based on road conditions and driver input. A Flex Lock-Up feature allows the clutch in the torque converter to maintain a half-engaged position, enhancing fuel efficiency and increasing the lock-up clutch's operational range. The driver can manually shift the automatic transmission using a console-mounted, gate-type shift lever. The gearshift position is also displayed in the instrument panel.

Two-Speed Transfer Case with Low Range
The FJ Cruiser's two-speed transfer case (with a 2.566 low range) is the same full-time four-wheel-drive transfer case used in the V6-powered 4x4 4Runner. In manual-transmission models, the transfer case uses a TORSEN® limited-slip center differential with a locking feature and distributes the engine's power 40:60 under most driving conditions. The TORSEN unit varies power distribution as needed, based on steering angle and wheel slippage. In the Lock position, the differential switches to 50:50 power distribution.

The 4x4 FJ Cruiser with the automatic-transmission employs a part-time four-wheel drive system with a 3.727:1 rear differential ratio and provides a 33.76:1 crawl ratio. With the manual transmission, the front and rear differential ratio is a lower 3.909:1 for a crawl ratio of 41.84:1, an attribute that helped the FJ Cruiser traverse California's famed Rubicon Trail.

An electronic locking rear differential with an eight-inch ring gear is available. The ring gear in the 4x4 FJ Cruiser's front differential also measures eight inches. The 4x2 FJ Cruiser comes standard with a virtual automatic limited-slip differential, provided and operated by an advanced traction-control system to enhance traction of both rear wheels in slippery driving conditions.

Cruising Comfort
The FJ Cruiser's interior combines heritage-inspired design with the comfort and convenience of a modern Toyota SUV. The dash is bordered by upper and lower tubular forms, which frame rectangular-shaped flat panels. Large control knobs provide easy grip, even when wearing gloves. Switches for major functions, including climate and audio controls and the optional locking rear differential, are mounted in the center dash panel within easy reach for the driver.

With the optional upgrade packages, the front interior door panels are color-keyed to the exterior color. The standard full gauge package – including speedometer, tachometer, amp meter, temperature gauge and fuel gauge – uses round, black-on-white dials for enhanced visibility. The instrument panel includes an oil-maintenance indicator.

Seating comfort is ensured by an eight-way adjustable driver's seat and a four-way adjustable front passenger seat. The rear seat is split 60/40, with folding (removable) bottom and back cushions that convert to a nearly flat cargo floor. Additionally, the FJ Cruiser uses the LATCH child-restraint system.

The FJ Cruiser is optimized to operate in dusty, muddy environments, and so easy cleaning and maintenance are important qualities for its interior. Seating materials are not only water-repellant, but also provide excellent ventilation. Seats are covered with a fabric backed by a special breathable resin coating to enhance the material's ability to shed liquids so that seats can easily be wiped down and cleaned. Even the stitched seams of the seat covers are treated with sealant to prevent liquids from penetrating the seams. The FJ Cruiser's floor surfaces are covered with an easy-to-clean gray rubber-like material.

Stylish and Functional
Unlike anything ever seen on the classic FJ40, the FJ Cruiser uses side access doors that open 90 degrees in clamshell fashion for easy rear-seat ingress and egress. Additionally, a swing-up glass hatch is incorporated into the side-hinged rear door. The glass hatch opens independently of the rear door and helps accommodate longer items such as lumber or surfboards.

The angular wheel arches open to provide maximum clearance for the FJ Cruiser's large 32-inch tires at full suspension deflection. The arches are edged by flexible fender flares that resist damage during vigorous off-road driving and also resist damage from the opening doors of other parked vehicles.

The Toyota Safety Standard

The FJ Cruiser, like all Toyota SUVs, provides a comprehensive standard safety package, including the addition of front seat-mounted side airbags and first- and second-row side curtain airbags for 2008. Dual-stage front driver and passenger advanced airbags inflate based on impact severity.

As with all Toyota SUVs, the FJ Cruiser is equipped with Toyota's STAR SAFETY SYSTEM™ that includes Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), Traction Control (TRAC), an Antilock Brake System (ABS), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist.

Four-channel, four-sensor ABS helps preserve steering ability by preventing the wheels from locking under hard braking. EBD distributes appropriate braking force between the front and rear wheels according to driving conditions. The traction-control system (TRAC) helps reduce tire slippage during slippery or challenging driving conditions. The VSC system helps keep the FJ Cruiser on the driver's intended course by detecting front- and/or rear-wheel slide during cornering and attempting to control slide conditions via torque intervention and/or braking of individual wheels.

Unique Details
Several unique features mark the thoughtfulness with which the FJ Cruiser was designed. For example, instead of the usual pair of front windshield-wiper arms, the FJ Cruiser uses three wiper arms to provide nearly complete coverage of the wide windshield. Diffusion-type nozzles provide superior windshield washing. The same type of diffusion nozzle is used on the rear-window washer.

A 33-degree the footwell floor angle helps the driver and front passenger maintain proper seating position for greater comfort. The rear cargo area is equipped with cargo-net hooks, multipurpose grocery-bag hooks and sturdy, floor-mounted cargo tie-down anchor points. An AC 115-volt 100/400-watt accessory connector socket is available.

Well Equipped and Ready for Personalization
The 2008 FJ Cruiser, in either 4x2 or 4x4 versions, comes with a long list of standard features, including: 17-inch black steel wheels with P265/70R17 tires; air conditioning; power windows and door locks; black water-resistant seats; a tilt steering wheel; four cup holders and two bottle holders; rear-window defogger; skid plates for the engine, transfer case and fuel-tank; a rear-door-mounted full-size spare tire; front and rear tow hooks, and mudguards.

Three audio systems are available for the FJ Cruiser. An AM/FM/CD system with six speakers is standard. A pair of NXT SurfaceSound transducers convert the vehicle's ceiling into a speaker diaphragm – the FJ Cruiser was the first vehicle to use this audio technology. The ceiling transducers complement the conventional speakers elsewhere in the vehicle, creating a broad, omni-directional dispersion of sound.

A Premium Audio FJammer AM/FM eight-speaker system with an in-dash six-disc CD changer is available as part of an option package. The same FJammer Premium Audio system is available with an amplified subwoofer (with dashboard on/off switch) located in the right-side panel of the rear cargo compartment. An auxiliary jack also is located in the lower-center switch cluster to provide input for portable audio devices, including iPods and MP3 players, and a 12-volt DC accessory socket is provided to power those devices.

An available Convenience Package includes keyless entry, cruise control, power side-view mirrors with image lights, daytime running lights, privacy glass, rear window wiper; and rear parking sonar.

Upgrade Package One (which requires the Convenience Package) includes a highly capable active off-road traction-control system, rear locking differential, multi-information display (compass, inclinometer and temperature gauge); Premium Audio system with in-dash six-disc changer, equalizer and eight speakers; a 400-watt inverter, 17-inch alloy wheels, leather-covered steering wheel with integral audio controls and cruise-control function, metal-colored shift lever, and interior door-trim inserts keyed to the vehicle's exterior color. To that content, Upgrade Package Two adds the rear subwoofer. Standalone options include 17-inch alloy wheels, a rear locking differential, and running boards.

The customer can personalize the FJ Cruiser by choosing from among a catalog of available accessories, including: auxiliary driving lights, rock rails, roof rack, brush guard, taillight guards, sport exhaust system, receiver hitch and harness, wind deflector with off-road lights, a cargo mat and all-weather or carpeted floor mats.

Warranty
The 2008 FJ Cruiser is covered by Toyota's 36-month/36,000-mile basic new-vehicle warranty and applies to all components other than normal wear and maintenance items. Additional 60-month warranties cover the powertrain for 60,000 miles and corrosion perforation with no mileage limitation.