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Our Rating

7.5 Good

The Prado GX is an affordable way to enter the large SUV market. The Prado has a large fuel tank with decent fuel efficiency and is perfect for long trips. The interior is as spacious as it could be, but could do with some technological updates.

  • Engine & Drivetrain 8
  • Performance 7
  • Fuel Economy 8
  • Interior 7
  • Gadgets & Technology 6
  • Safety 7
  • Ride & Comfort 8.5
  • Practicality 8
  • Affordability 7
  • Behind the Wheel 8
  • User Ratings (0 Votes) 0
Rating system explained

Engine

The Prado is powered by a 2.8-litre turbocharged 4-cylinder turbo-diesel engine. It puts out 130kW of power and 450Nm of torque thanks to the standard high torque figures in diesel cars – torque drops to 420Nm for the manual. The added torque in the auto is a definite plus given the size of the car that’s being pulled, along with any additional weight that might also need towing.

There is an option for a six-speed auto (as tested) or a six-speed manual. There is also full-time 4WD and low-range gearing for off-roading.

The engine packs enough punch for the purposes of this vehicle, but a bit more power would have helped. Although power isn’t what you buy this for, an extra 10% would have been nice. Nonetheless, the Prado still has no issue revving away and overtaking in the right lane.

Performance

The Prado is not a performance SUV and it isn’t what you should expect from it, but it still packs enough punch and revs hard given the low-range torque figures that diesels punch out.

AWD is permanent and this helps the stability of the car, particularly given its size. It isn’t ‘on demand’, it’s permanent, which is what a Prado should be, thank you Toyota.

Despite its size, the car certainly does feel more planted than other 2WD SUVs, with a touch more confidence given the reduced possibility of understeer.

Low range acts exactly as you’d want it to and makes off-roading a breeze with the Prado. Sand and rocks are a simple challenge for the Prado!

Overall, the Prado performs as you would expect it to – we love the predictability of the car and Toyota’s in general.

Fuel Economy

Toyota claims the consumption to be 7.9L/100km. We averaged around 10.0L/100km which is alright for a car of this stature.

This 10.7L/100km figure comprised of mostly urban driving which was brilliant. If that ratio favoured the urban driving side more, it would easily lower to under 8.0L/100km.

The Prado also has an absolutely ludicrous tank.. 150 Litres. Yep, you read that right, I’ll spell it out for you: one hundred and fifty litre tank! We clocked well over 1000km before we had to head for a fill up.

With its large tank and decent fuel consumption, the Prado makes the perfect companion for long winded trips. Purely motorway would see well over 1500km before the fuel light comes on.

Interior & Technology

The model tested is the GX, which comes as a 5-seater as standard. The inside is so incredibly spacious with 5 people able to sit comfortably for prolonged periods with no dramas whatsoever.

The lack of 2 seats in third row leads to a monstrous 640 litres of boot space! The floor in the boot is lower without the 7 seats, meaning more space for storage. There is also the side-hinged tailgate which is fairly heavy but sturdy nonetheless.

The second row folds away efficiently to a point where you could almost sleep in the back comfortably – definitely an option for avid campers that perhaps aren’t too keen on a tent.

In the front, there are two cupholders, storage for smaller items like wallets and keys or even a mobile (underneath the head unit), and decent door pockets with bottle holders.

The console bin at the armrest has AC cooling, while the back door pockets also have bottle holders and there are air vents back there too. The boot also has an input for a full AC plug socket – something I was pleased to see, and perfect for any portable device that needs power from a socket.

The head unit comes standard with Toyota’s 8.0-inch touchscreen system with Toyota Link connectivity. Again, missing Apple CarPlay and Android Auto which is due to arrive shortly on newer models.

The dash has a digital speedo which is a plus, along with some other settings and options that can be changed on the dash itself (with steering wheel controls). This 2 inch display sits beside a manual speedo and rev counter.

Safety

The Prado received a five-star ANCAP crash test rating way- but this was in 2011. This applied to all models sold from August 2013 onwards. Perhaps an updated ANCAP rating is needed.

Automatic models have auto emergency braking (AEB) with pedestrian detection, lane departure alert (but no lane keeping assist), automatic high-beam lights and adaptive cruise control.

Higher grades (VX and up) have blind spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert, as well as a surround view panoramic camera system.

The manual versions of the Prado miss out on Toyota’s Safety Sense pack.

Ride & Comfort

The ride is super cushy, as expected with the Prado. The whole family can ride in it and all be comfortable as ever and arguiing about who gets the front seat on the way home.

The thick profile tires, large rims and suspension help the Prado take on all terrain and bumps/speed humps effortlessly and without causing much jolting/recoil.

The AWD system is always on which helps the handling but expect a bit of body roll purely because of the Prado’s physical size.

Warranty & Servicing

Toyota offers a new 5 year/unlimited kilometre warranty for all of its models.

These vehicles are renowned for their reliability, after all, and the warranty also extends to seven years for the powertrain, if you have logbook servicing. Shockingly, it doesn’t even need to be servied by Toyota, just so long as the owners manual has been stamped on the regular.

Service intervals are every six months/10,000km, which is more than most competitors (many of which are 12 month/15,000km intervals). At least the service costs are low, with $260 per visit for the first three years/60,000km.

Pricing

GXL (4×4) 4.5L Diesel 5 speed manual $67,740
GXL (4×4) 5 SEAT 4.5L Diesel 5 speed manual $70,740
LC200 GX (4×4) 4.5L Diesel 6 speed automatic $77,832
LC200 GXL (4×4) 4.5L Diesel 6 speed automatic $89,222
LC200 GXL (4×4) 4.6L Regular Unleaded Petrol 6 speed automatic $83,200
LC200 SAHARA (4×4) 4.5L Diesel 6 speed automatic $119,972
LC200 SAHARA (4×4) 4.6L Regular Unleaded Petrol 6 speed automatic $114,830
LC200 SAHARA HORIZON SE (4×4) 4.5L Diesel6 speed automatic $129,000
LC200 VX (4×4) 4.5L Diesel 6 speed automatic $99,632
LC200 VX (4×4) 4.6L Regular Unleaded Petrol 6 speed automatic $93,410
PRADO GX (4×4) 2.8L Diesel 6 speed automatic $56,490
PRADO GX (4×4) 2.8L Diesel 6 speed manual $53,490
PRADO GX 7 SEAT (4×4) 2.8L Diesel 6 speed automatic $56,040
PRADO GXL (4×4) 2.8L Diesel 6 speed automatic $62,990
PRADO GXL (4×4) 2.8L Diesel6 speed manual $59,990
PRADO GXL (PREM INT) (4×4) 2.8L Diesel 6 speed automatic $66,490
PRADO KAKADU (4×4) 2.8L Diesel 6 speed automatic $84,119
PRADO VX (4×4) 2.8L Diesel 6 speed automatic $73,619
WORKMATE (4×4) 4.5L Diesel 5 speed manual $63,740
WORKMATE (4×4) 2 SEAT 4.5LDiesel 5 speed manual $67,640

Overall

The Prado GX offers buyers an opportunity to get into a reliable, sturdy, spacious SUV that will take on the task of commuting the family, whilst also offering fun on weekends.

The GX lacks the features that the higher trims have, but comes in at an affordable price range.

ALL our videos of the Prado GX:

Full Walkthrough Review:

Tech Review:

Comprehensive Review and Drive:

POV Urban Test Drive:

Exhaust video:

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