2012 Toyota Kluger Grande | Unambitious Us

4 Июн 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »
Toyota Kluger


In this edition of Ace on I turn my attention to one of the best family haulers in Australia, the Kluger. It serves as a competitor to the Territory and, in Grande the Volvo XC90. Our test car was the Grande AWD model.

Design: In the Kluger received a ‘mid-life’ in order to freshen up the design. The beg the question: did Toyota tell its to use nothing more than a and a ruler? It is not a particularly ugly the square, new face just a little more ungainly in to the more curvaceous face of the models. The sidesteps and larger 19 wheels fitted to our car, with the metallic black make the car look a little European than the boxy, boring, styling would That said the Volvo especially in R-Design guise, is a handsome car indeed. With a few extras such as quad and big, 5-spoke alloy the XC90 is the best looking car in the sub family hauler class.

the cabin design is modern the standard wood trim the interior a more upmarket Most of the components look as they may be found on the previous Lexus RX. Trust me when I say is a good thing. The gauges are designed, yet, they are to read, a good blend of form and function. That while the lack of a helper LCD in of the driver adds simplicity, it be fitted to this top-spec

The centre console is dominated by a touchscreen used to control the sat-nav and mobile phone. A display mounted above the screen displays information the climate control settings as as information about the vehicle as fuel consumption data. The leather seats are a nice to the paintwork and are very comfortable, surprisingly supportive. Thanks to adjustment for both driver and it is easy to find a comfortable position.

I like the simplicity of the way in which the are laid out throughout the cabin. All of fall easily to hand and are to operate even while gloves. There are some details throughout the cabin as the leather and wood on the gear Another of these details is the on the steering wheel, which is and feels nice in one’s All of this makes the Kluger’s feel more upmarket that in a Ford Territory.

while the interior looks it doesn’t feel upmarket. of the plastics fitted lower in the cabin (i.e. the door feel cheap. Indeed, plastics adorn most of the The problem is that most of the is made up of hard, crudely plastics, whereas competitiors as the VW Touareg, use soft touch in conjunction with leather. makes the Toyota feel in comparison. While some of the materials may be satisfactory in the sub $50,000 models, they feel in a $70,000+ luxury vehicle.

The system, while somewhat as it is DVD based, is one of the better systems in use as it is simple, responsive and easy to Street names are easy to and the variety of different views on make good use of the generously screen. The voice guidance is and easy to understand, however, it short of the systems used in a of the Kluger’s European rivals as it voice activation. Something that annoys me about system is the fact that the system is not in use, the default is the map. I would have the default display to be the settings for the player.

While the Kluger is vast it does not make the best use of the space, devoting too much to the passenger compartment. While in the back is generous, it comes at the of luggage capacity. While the XC90 is less spacious in the seat, it is capable of carrying people as well as their The Kluger, on the other hand is of carrying either seven and no luggage or five people their luggage. Before you in to tell me that the Volvo is a car, it is less than longer than the Toyota.

are plenty of storage spaces throughout the cabin with door bins both and rear as well as a multitude of cup and a big glove box. I also the fact that each seat comes with own armrest.

On the design front the is a reasonably good looking car is relatively spacious and well The interior is well laid out but let by the extensive use of sub-standard materials.

Before we get into what the is like to drive, it is important to that the Kluger is available two drivetrains both of which use the 3.5 litre V6 which produces of power and 337Nm of torque, to an antiquated 5-speed automatic The only difference between the two where the gearbox sends power, either to the front or all four. Our test car was an all-wheel model. It is important to note there is currently no diesel available and Toyota announced will be no diesel versions of the new (which expected to arrive in the future).

Let’s move on to the Kluger is like to drive in a of day-to-day situations. Around the car is very easy to drive. is primarily because all of the controls are and easy to operate. It is easy to see why people would enjoy this car, however I am not one of While the controls are light and to operate, the throttle pedal spongy and the throttle response is poor as it take a moment for the to realise that the accelerator has been depressed. The fact the car is very slow to respond to input means that is as though the engine is underpowered.

I have a similar problem the brakes. The pedal itself is spongy and not very communicative. not only makes precisely the pedal pressure required to in a given distance difficult, it also means that one confidence in the brakes themselves.

On the hand the suspension, represents a balance between ride and handling. The car rides well even the largest of imperfections in the while controlling its two tonne rather well at slower The steering is another example of a compromise. It is weighty enough to the conditions of the road to the driver being light enough to driving at slow speeds

On the open road, my gripes the throttle and the brakes remain however, it would be remiss of me not to the fact that after 45 minutes of reasonable (not use, braking performance was as a result of brake fade.  meant that while along a challenging piece of I had little confidence in the brakes, prevented me from experiencing the performance of the car. As such I that the brakes on this car are and are in serious need of an overhaul.

said, courtesy of the excellent quality and good sound this car makes for an excellent distance cruiser. Also, driving the Kluger along our test route, (consisting of reasonably challenging roads) I was at how well the car seemed to handle. The drive system provided grip while the suspension significantly to the excellent body There was not an excessive amount of which I was expecting given the biased suspension setup. to Toyota for finding a setup allows for excellent ride without sacrificing body and handling.

Toyota Kluger

The driving experience is further by the steering, which, at higher weight up nicely in order to a reasonable amount of feedback to the This enables the driver to place the car on even the most of roads.

The engine is also one of car’s strong points as it more than adequate across the rev-range. In addition, it is an engine that is willing to rev thus enabling smooth delivery that characteristic of a aspirated V6 giving real when a large portion of the performance is called upon. I also add that there is (with the exception of a V12 and a Ferrari V8) sounds as good as a six-cylinder and this 3.5 litre power is no exception. As the needle on the tachometer past 4000 the engine to bellow, creating a sound would have even the Luciano Pavarotti worried. My criticism is that there is not enough low-end torque to the engine feel properly

But now it is time to mention what is, by far and the worst thing about car. The gearbox. There is no way to describe it other than to say it is crap. Absolutely rubbish. town it is reluctant to shift leaving one stranded in a sea of nothingness as the doesn’t have the torque to overcome the problem. Moreover, it does eventually shift it slips to the point where one may be led to that it consists not of cogs but of On the open road the dim-wittedness of the becomes even more as when one summons a good of the available performance the gearbox hangs on to higher gears. I was out onto a road where the limit was 110 kph. I was travelling at 40 kph and in forth gear. I put my foot and nothing happened. I put my foot to the (literally) only to see the needle on the slowly climb from – 63 kph, at which point I manual control of the gears. is nothing short of abhorrent, dangerous.

Moreover, even when one assume control of the gearbox, one that between each one could fit a new gearbox. Even if you rev the to within an inch of its life, you come to change up you find in a part of the rev range where is no power and very little The gearbox is in desperate need of gear or two. It is time for the 5-speed ‘slush-box’ to be replaced by a new 6 or 7-speed gearbox.

The driving in the Toyota Kluger is best as a mix of the good the bad and the abhorrent.

Cost: it comes to the question of whether or not the represents good value for there are two ways to look at the The first is that when with the Ford Territory, the appears to be good value, if one was to purchase one of the mid-spec models. in Grande trim, the Kluger is competing against two of the biggest in the business; Volkswagen’s Touareg and XC90. The Grande equivalent in a is priced at $62,990 (Note: all exclude on-road costs), the is $65,490 and the equivalent XC90 is at $69,990. That said, they are all optioned spec-for-spec, all cost over $70,000. As I would have to recommend the European rivals as they are better cars.

Moreover, while Toyota are terrific deals when it to servicing costs, the Kluger cost more to live as it is very thirsty. Toyota that the combined fuel is 11.6L/100km. On our test, over a range of driving conditions, we 14.1L/100km. The Kluger is thirstier both the XC90 and the Touareg. is before we get to the fact that engines are offered in all of the Kluger’s (Territory included). This the Kluger at a significant disadvantage it comes to running costs as one half their fuel simply by buying a diesel.

The – mid-spec models of the Toyota are competitively priced against the Territory, however, the top-spec cannot hold its own up againt the XC 90 and This is courtesy of substandard materials and an archaic drivetrain. As if you were looking for a $70,000 hauler, seriously consider its rivals. Personally my first would be the Touareg as I am a bit of a VW fan. if it is a blend of style, space and that you are looking for, the XC90 is still at the top of this even if it is 10 years old.

score: 15/30


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