Toyota and off-roading have been bosom buddies as far back as the early 1950s, when the first Land Cruiser (then just a Jeep imitator) rolled out of the ARACO factory in Toyota City, Japan. Now, in 2017, the automaker is looking to show its kinship with the outdoors once more as it teases the world with its upcoming concept: the FT-4X.
Toyota plans to reveal the FT-4X at the upcoming New York International Auto Show (specifically, Wednesday, April 12th). This is the first we’ve gotten to see of the FT-4X, and while it isn’t much, it does leave some room for speculation.
First, the tire in the shot is a Goodyear model, measuring 225x55R18, making the tire about 27 inches in diameter. That doesn’t come across as very reassuring, since these dimensions are more on par with a Jeep Renegade than a Jeep Wrangler.
Anyway, whatever Goodyear model it is, it has the makings of an all-terrain meets mud-terrain, with sizeable gaps in between the tread lugs and a rather bland sidewall. The wheel is a decent-looking alloy unit, without any beadlocks present.
But enough about the wheel and tire; what about the vehicle? Details are scarce, but word on the street is this is Toyota’s attempt to get back into the SUV market and replace the longing left by the FJ Cruiser’s departure in 2013. Fans have still had the 4Runner to hold them over, but its midsize market placement has excluded those who couldn’t afford its $35,000-plus price tag.
We believe, given the tire and wheel size, that the FT-4X will be a competitor for the Jeep Renegade – lower market level, easier to afford for young families, and built on a unibody platform for ease of manufacturing and car-like ride quality, all while having some off-road-y touches to make it feel a bit more “manly.”
What do you think the FT-4X will look like? Give us your two cents in the comments section below.