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Toyota Kluger turbo confirmed for Australia, V6 power is dead in early 2023


For the first time in its 19-year run in Australia, the Toyota Kluger will not have an available V6 – the SUV is going turbo four-cylinder instead

The Toyota Kluger has long been associated with an available, large V6 petrol engine – but that will no longer be the case when the brand replaces the six with a detuned version of the Lexus NX’s 2.4-litre turbocharged petrol four-cylinder next year.

Toyota Australia has said that the new 2.4-litre turbocharged engine will utilise “a range of sophisticated technologies” including a newly developed turbocharger, fuel injection system and a longer stroke design. 

Since the first-generation Kluger was launched in Australia in 2003, a V6 petrol has always been on the menu – with the first model’s 3.3-litre upsized to an older version of the present day 3.5-litre V6 in 2008.

The side profile of the updated Toyota Kluger

The downsized 2.4-litre four-cylinder will produce an estimated 198kW of power and 420Nm of torque – about 20 percent more grunt than the outgoing V6, but 20kW less power. The 3.5-litre engine makes 218kW/350Nm.

Customers will have the choice of either front- or all-wheel drive for the turbo Kluger, and this powertrain will be available across the range in GX, GXL and Grande guise.

The AWD-only 2.5-litre petrol-electric hybrid powertrain that joined the Kluger range in 2020 will remain as a more efficient option.

The new 2.4-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine in all its glory

Other than the engine update, Toyota Australia will also launch a range of updates for Toyota connected services which includes SOS emergency call, automatic collision notification and stolen vehicle tracking. 

Also updated are the interior screens, which go from 4.2-inch to 7-inch in size for the driver’s display, while the central touchscreen will also be enhanced and enlarged from 8.0-inches to 12.3-inches. 

Toyota says more details will come to light as we get closer to the updated Kluger’s arrival in the first quarter of 2023. 

Toyota Kluger GX hybrid 2022
The Toyota Kluger GX hybrid at Chasing Cars’ Car of the Year 2022

What is this new 2.4-litre turbocharged engine?

The updated Kluger engine for 2023 is not completely new in a global sense, with the US-built SUV version, called the Highlander, having had the new 2.4-litre turbo engine installed since the start of 2022. 

The engine is also used in the closely-related Lexus NX and the Lexus RX, too. In these Lexus products, the 2.4-litre unit has slightly more power and torque than the Toyota Kluger/Highlander variant, making 205kW/430Nm.

Toyota Kluger GX Hybrid 2021 Engine
The hybrid engine for the Kluger will remain for the future

Some interesting facts about the ‘Dynamic Force’ 2.4-litre engine is that it is 2939cc in size, has a compression ratio of 11.0:1 and uses a single, twin-scroll turbocharger. 

For those who aren’t sure about what twin-scroll means, in a really simple way, the turbocharger has two, yep, that’s right, scrolls inside of the mechanism. 

The air channels from the exhaust gases split into two to help divide the pulsations of the engine and therefore create better flow and more response.