THE keys to our resident 79 Series Land Cruiser were begrudgingly handed back to Toyota this month.
We say begrudgingly, because the Cruiser was a great off-road companion for our five months of ownership – it took us to the top of countless scraggy rock-climbs in the Victorian High Country, across more than one state border, and it was the perfect load hauler to assist with tip runs and home relocations.
All up, we made the most of our time with the ‘2017 4X4 of the Year winning’ LC79 and hope our next shed rig – whatever that may be – can match the high standards and expectations left by the V8-powered Toyota.
Speaking of high expectations, this month we took Merc’s wagon version of the G300 CDI Professional for a dance up at Toolangi in Victoria. However, with the good comes the bad, and we also got to drive it in peak-hour Melbourne traffic (lucky us!), where the lack of mod cons became increasingly evident. It was an entertaining experience explaining to a passenger the price tag after they learnt the big Merc lacked Bluetooth and electric windows.
The all-new Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk is at the opposite end of the 4x4 spectrum, with a relaxed, passenger-car-like on-road demeanour and a nicely detailed cabin, but is the rig as capable off-road as it is on bitumen?
The same can be said for updated Isuzu MU-X’s interior, which now has pleasing soft-touch materials on the inside and reduced NVH levels in the cabin. Read all about the re-styled, well-priced Isuzu wagon, as well as the Merc G300, Trailhawk and our last days with the LC79 in the July 2017 issue of 4X4 Australia, which is out now!