NEW toyota FJ - thumbs up or thumbs down?

Toyota even is using the old logo not the new oval logo.

The FJ will probably have great sales but it is always touchy when reintroducing a cult vehical.

porsche 911 - many cult members.
MG cult status
beetle - cult
Jeepers - definitely cult

I was less impressed when I saw it in person (it was in an awful maroon color which didn’t help) What threw me off in person where the bumpers, a lot of surfaces, and big faux metal pieces. The rest I thought was pretty nice. Inside was simple, materials still a little cheap, but the design was cool. I read there are a pair of transducers that turn the entire roof into a giant speaker… thats pretty cool eh?

Transducers in the roof? In production? Wow. I’ve been designing some gaming chairs with transducers in them. Definately makes for an interesting experience. I can only imagine what a car full of them would be like. Just think…a rapper could be driving down the street, blasting his stereo, yet people on the sidewalk would only hear the treble and not the booming bass. How nice would that be? Of course, they would much rather have the standard bass that reasonates through 12’ brick walls and makes the entire car rattle. That attracts more attention! So much for sound quality.

Moderator, I agree, it is touchy launching a retro cult vehicle like the FJ. I have the same feelings about the FJ that I did about the New Beetle. It’s too thought out. The originals were cool because they were raw simplicity. These vehicles are too obviously the same option loaded vehicles as a 4 Runner or a Golf, but with a thin veil of designed simplicity added on as a marketing ploy.

I think there are two successful retro techniques in auto design: 1. keep the spirit of the original, just improve on it or 2. capture a feeling of an era, not a particular model.

The Mini is a huge sucess because BMW, smartly, built on what was there. They built a really great car, but as small as possible, just like the original. They created a new huge line of accesories for the car, just as the original had.

The PT Cruiser was a success because it captured alot of the flavor of '30’s-'40’s American cars, without singling out any particular model. Now, the PT has fallen off simply because it has been in production too long and it was never really a car for the US market. I’ve heard that it had much better niche success in Europe.

I love it.

Thumbs up on the exterior and features ( true 4x4 w/lo gear and 6sp manual tranny )

Thumbs down on the interior. When did Royhamaha start to build low grade materials on the inside? Plus it looks a little parted together.

I doubt hamaha has anything to do with the FJ :laughing:

this one’s probably just a royota

The PT is a thinly veiled Neon! I can’t believe there is a designer alive who prefers the PT to the New Beetle.

The New Beetle I think will outlive most retro because A_ it started the movement, B_ it abstracted the original so much. Not a single line caries over, yet it is still the Beetle on first sight.

For this reason I respect it more than the Mini. It is really a NEW Beetle, vs the Mini, which to me is a cartoon of the original. IMO.

This is no surprise, I think the TT, is the MOST successful retro design. From the pure standpoint that no one considers it retro, yet it is heavily influenced by early auto union racers and Bauhaus detailing. Like a good hair cut, you can’t even tell. They are going to boink it all up with the new one though…

The New Beetle started a movement? I agree, it gave the product guys a case study that they could use when it came to convince the bean counters. As a styling excercise, I think it is a wonderful design. As a product, it was a short term gain that has quickly become just another product. This year, they freshened the New Beetle sheet metal, but at the new car show here, it was tucked away at the back of the VW booth. Other than me, I didn’t see anyone at the busy show even walk near it.

The PT is a dead dog too. It had alot of things against it, a rough powertrain, spotty reliability and far too little gas milage for a small car. However, to me, it invokes a feeling of those old cars. The dash is painted, like my dad’s Model A. The shifter is a round ball, like so many of those old hot rods. Plus, it adds a small mini-van’s functionality with removable seats and a gaping hatch opening. The Neon never had anything going for it, the PT only had its design going for it.

I love the TT for some of the same reasons. It is inspired by old cars and old movements, just like the PT. But, it doesn’t try to say something it’s not. It’s a modern sportscar with a design inspired by the past.

I hope this puts my comments in perspective. I’m viewing these as products and not just styling excercises.

The Neon never had anything going for it

well, except that there are a lot cheap peope who don’t really care what car they drive…


The Toyota histroy behind this car is a famous one, These were and are going to be some of the most off road capable vechiles. Of all the throw backs, this is one of the nicest one.

Plus I love the driving lights on the mirrors.

The TT and the PT are vehicals that looked different from the whole available selection of vehicals. I give them kudos for that but would never drive either.

The Beetle and FJ Are new and yet recognizable with a familiarity of sorts. they also have a legacy of past members.

If all modern cars of today had the beetle shape or FJ front end, the "new beetle and New Fj would be catastrophic flops.

I keep wondering how The big Six can offer multiple model lines that all look the same and relatively similar performance profiles. The nissans look like the Lexus which looks like the kia which looks like the ___________fill the blank.

What gives? Why all the similarity? Why are we not seeing more cars that look different? One time I accidentally offended one of my customers when I asked what color his Land Cruiser Was? He sharply replied that it was a lexus! OK he had the Lexux version of the Cruser, but Cmon, they are the same.

Just like the new FJ is really a 4-runner in a different costume, at least it looks different!

Fear of failure is the reason we don’t see different cars on the road. Remember the Aztek?

Actually, I think there are more breaks from styling than just the retro cars. 2000 Focus was very wild for its day. For that matter, the 1996 jelly-bean Taurus was pretty weirdly different. There are also smaller breaks, the 300 and Magnum (for that matter, the Concorde/Intrepids were far from mainstream styling). The Germans and Swedes rarely break out of the box, although the Smart is very different and superbly executed. The Japanese did produce cars like the most recent Celica, Previa minivan and the Civic hatchbacks were always unique.

Back to fear though. For some reason failures like the Aztek stay in people’s minds more than successes like the Mini. Looking at the Cobalt, it seems as though GM designers were scared out of their minds after the Aztek.