A very rare Toyota for sale in Australia

Each month I generally like to look at a new car which is on the market, however this month I’ve decided to look at a second-hand car, but not any ordinary second-hand car, it’s a 2000 Toyota Mega Cruiser.

Really, it’s a bit of a stretch calling it a car because it’s closer to a truck than a car.

The world’s first glimpse of a Toyota Mega Cruiser was as a prototype vehicle at the 1993 Tokyo Motor Show which went into production in late 1995. The largest 4WD vehicle ever built by Toyota, it has obvious design cues from the Hummer H1 and was designed as a heavy-duty four-wheel drive vehicle, exclusively for sale in Japan primarily to the military, police, and fire/rescue departments.

The Mega Cruiser was intended to test designs that would eventually make their way into mass-produced Toyota SUVs, such as the Land Cruiser, but only around 2,500 vehicles were manufactured before production was halted in 2001. At the time, the reason given was that sales had slowed right down due to strict vehicle taxes and also, they were impractical as Japan has many narrow streets. 133 of the oversized 4WDs were sold to civilians with some being sold overseas as grey imports.

Like the Hummer Humvee, the Toyota Mega Cruiser is a brute of a car/small truck. It’s 5.1 metres long and 2.1 metres wide, has a 4.1-litre inline 4-cylinder turbo diesel engine, 4-speed automatic transmission, four-wheel steering as well as front, centre and rear differential locks and seats two people in the front and fourteen in the rear.

So why is this particular car, which is for sale through Lloyds Auctioneers and Valuers, so special? Only 900 of the Mega Cruisers currently exist in the world, it’s the only one in Australia and was imported for use in the film Kong vs Godzilla, which due to Australian Design Rules, will cause a problem should the purchaser want to drive it on the roads.

This ‘DRIVE’ article by Ben Zachariah takes a closer look at what is a unique vehicle:

‘One of the rarest Toyota models ever made surfaces at Australian auction house’ – DRIVE

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