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This week on Chasing Cars: 4 Series Gran Coupe on the horizon, Land Cruiser and Sportage unveiled


I could talk about a number of things this week but there is no arguing the car of the hour is the new Toyota Land Cruiser that has arrived armed and ready to take on its next 70 years of adventure.

Despite being a rather expensive car in a challenging economy the Cruiser still sells like a car one-third of its price did around 10 years ago, and the new one sure looks to continue this trend.

Volkswagen Golf R 2021 front 3/4
Volkswagen says Australia will get the full 235kW of power when the eighth-gen Golf R arrives

It wasn’t the only SUV that came out this week, though, with the Kia Sportage finally ripping off the covers and Volvo announced that its cute little XC40 would get an EV version in Australia.

We also saw some important confirmations out of Volkswagen who said the Australian version of the eighth-generation Golf R will get the full-fat 235kW power output – unlike the last generation that was actually down on power. 

Toyota Land Cruiser 300 Series 2022 group
Toyota has unveiled the new Land Cruiser 300 Series with an all new chassis and engine lineup

Toyota Land Cruiser 300 Series unveiled

The highly anticipated 300 Series Land Cruiser has been a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow for us in the motoring journalism world and it looks like the 15-year wait was worth it.

Set to arrive in Australia in the final quarter of this year, the 300 Series adopts an all-new (but still body-on-frame) chassis and adds some smarts to the KDSS system that will make it significantly more capable on and off the bitumen.

Toyota Land Cruiser 300 Series 2022 GR Sport driving
The 300 Series gets a tricky new suspension system that should increase the body control at all times

While some will lament the demise of the hulking 4.5L diesel V8, we all know Toyota can make a bloody good engine when it wants to, so there is no reason why the new crop of twin-turbocharged V6 engines won’t be – at the very least – quite good.

They also look to be a good deal more powerful with the 3.5L petrol making 305kW/650Nm and the 3.3L diesel (more likely for Australia) producing a pretty phenomenal 227kW/700Nm.

BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe 2022-6
BMW announced the 4 Series Gran Coupe which is coming to Australia this year

BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe set for Australia

Echoing the pattern set by its first generation, the BMW 4 Series has evolved its coupe shape into a four-door Gran Coupe design that offers the same 3 Series underpinnings with a sexier outer appearance.

Set to arrive in Australia towards the end of this year, it will be offered in three grades known as the 420i, 430i and the full fat M440i – which makes near M-like 285kW/500Nm grunt from its turbocharged 3.0L straight-six.

Of course it will feel like a BMW on the inside as well but still has the practicality of a sedan with a quite decent 470L boot space for carting the golf clubs on the weekend.

Kia Sportage 2022 front 3/4 static
Kia has given the new Sportage some radical new styling inside and out

Kia Sportage debuts futuristic look

You’ve got to do a lot to stand out in the midsize SUV crowd and Kia understood this very well when they redesigned the fifth-generation Sportage.

Set to debut in Australia later this year, the Sportage wears a new kind of styling that debuted on the ballistic fully-electric EV6 midsize SUV.

This radical design continues to the inside as well with the interior sporting a new dual screen system that is housed within a single panel and pointed directly at the driver. Which should make it easier to bat away tiny hands armed with bad music taste.

Volvo XC40 Recharge Pure Electric 2021 driving 3/4 front
The Volvo XC40 Recharge Pure Electric has 418km of range and a huge amount of power

Other car and SUV news we covered this week:

  • The Volvo XC40 Recharge Pure Electric is possibly the longest car name we’ve seen in a while but what it’s attached to looks to be top-notch, with 418km of WLTP-tested range lots of power and a $76,990 starting price (before on-roads) when it lands here in the third quarter of 2021.
  • Volkswagen confirmed this week that Australia would be getting the eighth-generation Volkswagen Golf R with the full-fat 235kW/420Nm outputs of the European model after we received a slightly discounted tune last time around.
  • Bentley announced the Bentayga S earlier this month that gives the already quite fast SUV a sportier flavour with a specific suspension tune and thrown in the 48-volt active roll bar system as standard.