For Sale By:Private Seller
Sub Model: BJ70 FJ40 BJ45
Model: Land Cruiser
Exterior Color: Green
Interior Color: Gray
Drive Type: AWD
Key Biscayne, Florida, United States
We'll be publishing our First Drive of the 2014 Toyota Corolla later today, but right now, we can reveal that the eleventh-generation compact will be priced from $16,800 when it hits dealerships this fall (*not including a $810 destination charge).
Four trim levels will be offered, and that sub-$17,000 price point reflects the base L grade with a six-speed manual transmission. Adding the four-speed automatic (yep) brings that price up to $17,400, which gets you the usual features standard on this class of car, including Bluetooth connectivity, eight airbags and - a first for this price point - LED headlamps.
From there, the LE trim ($18,300) adds a backup camera, cruise control, keyless entry, Entune audio (including a 6.1-inch touchscreen) and a brand-new continuously variable transmission replacing the four-speed auto. There's even an Eco version of the LE trim that uses a different engine tune to provide fuel economy of up to 42 miles per gallon on the highway.
Used to be that if you wanted a luxury automobile - especially one to be chauffeured around in - your choices were basically limited to a sedan. It could be bigger or smaller, more or less expensive, depending on your needs and budget, but it was always going to have four doors and a trunk. But these days the rich and famous are looking elsewhere for their commodious forms of pampering transportation. There are, of course, the crossovers and SUVs, which only seem to be getting bigger and more expensive thanks to the likes of the Mercedes-Benz G-Class, Range Rover L and upcoming Bentley sport-ute. But luxury vans are becoming the new big thing.
That's the point that one dealer in Japan is trying to make to Toyota. The dealership owner himself reasons that if he's going out on the town, he's likely to take his chauffeured Lexus LS. But if he's taking a few friends along, even the biggest sedan isn't going to cut it. So he takes a Toyota Alphard (pictured above, also known as the Vellfire), a JDM van that's even bigger than a Voxy/Noah or Sienna but hardly a high-end affair. That's why he's asking Lexus to make a luxury van.
The idea may seem a little far-fetched, but isn't without precedent. It didn't take much for Lexus to transform the Land Cruiser into the LX and thus create its first luxury SUV. And as Mercedes has shown with pimped-out versions of the Sprinter and now with the debut of the new V-Class in Geneva, there's clearly a market for it... in some countries, anyway. The only question in our minds is how long it's going to take other luxury automakers to catch on, because let's face it: the Chrysler Town & Country ain't gonna cut it for those used to be driven around in a Maybach.
BMW makes some sweet-revving engines, but its own vehicles aren't the only ones running BMW engines. So do the latest from Rolls-Royce and Mini, of course, as well as a handful of Peugeots and Citroëns thanks to its joint engine program with PSA. Wiesmann uses BMW engines, as did the famous McLaren F1. And now we can add one more to the list.
That would be the Toyota Verso, a Corolla-based minivan which Toyota builds in Turkey and sells in Europe and a few other markets overseas. The Verso is also now officially the first beneficiary of the partnership between Toyota and BMW as the Japanese automaker has released the MPV with BMW's 1.6-liter turbodiesel four.
The 111-horsepower engine is coupled to a Toyota transmission and joins the Verso range as the fourth (and least powerful) engine in the lineup, alongside the 122hp 2.0 diesel and the gasoline options with 1.6 liters and 160 hp and 1.8 for 180. Future collaborations between the two automakers will include fuel-cell development, a new joint sportscar platform, lightweight bodywork research and a new generation of lithium-air batteries. See the press release below for further details.