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Toyota Kluger Review

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finder score: 76.33%

Avg. critics score: 76.33%
3 critics
How did we calculate this? We analysed and aggregated the scores of Cars Guide and WhichCar to bring you the finder.com.au score. This is a comprehensive score that brings together the three different expert ratings you see below.
finder.com.au is personal finance comparison site that provides you with the tools you need to make better decisions. Learn
how we work and how we make money.

Critic reviews

WebsiteRatingNotable quotes
Cars Guide69%"Twenty kilograms short of two tons of American-built iron equipped with an unstressed V6, it's big and straightforward."Read more
WhichCar90%"It is smooth and quiet to drive, and its comfortable cabin has thoughtful storage touches and deeply cushioned seats. "Read more
Cars Guide70%"The Kluger will serve you and your family well in a solid and unspectacular way. Given most of us like that in our cars, it's easy to see why it's a hit."Read more

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How does the Toyota Kluger compare with its peers?

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Number of seats Boot displacement ANCAP rating Price (from) Finder Score Read review
Toyota LandCruiser 200
8 seats
620L
5 stars
$78,190
81.5%
Alfa Romeo Stelvio
5 seats
525L
5 stars
$65,900
81.25%
Nissan Patrol
7 seats
550L
5 stars
$71,990
80%
Toyota LandCruiser Prado
7 seats
480L
5 stars
$53,490
79%
Holden Trailblazer
7 seats
554L
5 stars
$47,990
77.88%
Mitsubishi Pajero Sport
7 seats
502L
5 stars
$45,000
77.33%
Toyota Kluger
7 seats
529L
5 stars
$43,550
76.33%
Nissan Pathfinder
7 seats
453L
5 stars
$41,990
74.5%
Range Rover Sport
7 seats
784L
5 stars
$95,100
72%
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The complete Toyota Kluger review

Toyota Kluger Pricing

The Toyota Kluger is available in three variants – GX, GXL and the top-of-the-line Grande. Prices vary depending on where you live, but the figures listed in the table below are the driveaway prices for the Sydney 2000 postcode as of 7 March 2019.

GXGXLGrande
$49,273$59,878$71,317

Overview

The Toyota Kluger has long been one of the stand-out sales performers in the Japanese manufacturer's Australian line-up. A seven-seater family SUV designed with practicality in mind, the Kluger boasts a spacious cabin and the sort of reliable performance for which Toyota is known.

There's a powerful V6 engine under the bonnet and the interior fit and finish quality is excellent. 2WD and 4WD variants are available and the Kluger does an admirable job as a family wagon for school runs, shopping trips, weekend sport and the like.

However, the Kluger does have its shortcomings. That V6 can be a little thirsty, the infotainment system is starting to show its age and it's not the cheapest family SUV going around.

And while the Kluger is still an impressive package and continues to sell well, it's facing increasing competition from the likes of the Hyundai Santa Fe, Kia Sorento and Mazda CX-9.

So is the Toyota Kluger the right family SUV for you and your crew? Let's take a closer look at what some of Australia's leading motoring journalists have had to say.

Exterior

As you'd expect from a Toyota seven-seater SUV, there's nothing particularly outlandish about the Kluger's design and there's nothing wrong with that. The first thing that caught the eye of most reviewers was the sheer size of the Kluger. In order to offer plenty of space inside, this SUV has pretty sizeable dimensions. It's a tall, wide vehicle and one you climb up (rather than step down) into.

The other stand-out feature is the masculine front end, which features a unique grille that adds a point of interest to an otherwise conservative design. Alloy wheels are fitted as standard and there are nine paint colour options available.

Engine and performance

The Kluger's 3.5L V6 generates 218kW of power and 350Nm of torque. You can choose between 2WD and AWD models, but all feature the same eight-speed automatic transmission. If you want a manual, you'll need to look elsewhere. There also aren't any diesel models available, so petrol is the only option.

Official combined fuel consumption figures range from 9.1–9.5L/100km, depending on the model you choose and whether you go for 2WD or AWD. However, in real-world driving, the reviewers returned figures of above 13L/100km, with fuel efficiency regularly singled out as one of the Kluger's weak spots.

That said, the inclusion of a large, 72L fuel tank means you'll still be able to fit in a fair bit of driving between trips to the servo. The V6 is also a quiet and smooth performer that has no trouble getting you off the line and moving this circa-two-tonne SUV from A to B.

Finally, the Kluger's braked towing capacity is capped at 2,000kg.

2WDAWD
Engine3.5L V6 petrol engine3.5L V6 petrol engine
Maximum power218kW @ 6,600rpm218kW @ 6,600rpm
Maximum torque350Nm @ 4,700rpm350Nm @ 4,700rpm
Transmission8-speed automatic transmission8-speed automatic transmission
Fuel economy9.1L/100km (GX & GXL), 9.3L/100km (Grande)9.5L/100km
Fuel capacity72 litres72 litres

Handling

Exhilarating and engaging handling is hardly something you'd expect from a seven-seat SUV and that's the case with the Kluger. Remember, this is a big vehicle in terms of height as well as weight, so it's hardly going to handle like a hot hatch.

That said, the reviewers didn't find any major faults with the Kluger's on-road performance. The ride on the long-travel suspension is impressively smooth and comfortable. While the reviewers did experience body roll in and out of corners, it wasn't any more than you'd expect from a car of this size. The key is to drive the Kluger the way it's meant to be driven, rather than trying to push it towards the edge of its limits.

One reviewer also reported that the steering response was improved slightly on the Grande's 19-inch tyres (GX and GXL sit on 18-inch rubber) but can slightly diminish the ride quality. And if you fancy heading away from the blacktop, AWD versions of the Kluger are suited to some off-bitumen driving but not heavy-duty off-road work.

Interior

When you climb up and into the Kluger's driving seat you're greeted with a comfortable and well-appointed cabin. While the design is quite conservative, everything you need is included, the layout makes perfect sense and the finish is to a high standard.

The reviewers made special note of just how high the seating position in the Kluger is, offering excellent vision to the front and side. Rear vision isn't great, but all variants come with a rear-view camera. The front seats in the Kluger also impressed the reviewers with their comfort levels and spaciousness, making this row quite a pleasant place to be for long-distance touring.

The boxy outer shell of the Kluger means there's a lot space to work with inside. The seven seats are split across three rows and the middle row also has ample room for a couple of kids or adults to travel in comfort. But space is a little harder to come by in the third row, with the seats there only really suited to smaller kids.

Clever storage solutions abound throughout the interior, headlined by the cavernous centre console. With a 24L capacity, this storage bin has heaps of room and will surely get plenty of use on long road trips. Each row of seating gets cupholders (there are eight in total) and the reviewers were impressed with the shelf on the dashboard, which is a very useful spot for storing phones and other odds and ends.

Total storage space in the Kluger depends on your seating arrangements. With the third row of seats in use, there's only 195 litres of capacity, but this rises to 529 litres when you fold them away. And with the middle row also down, you'll have a huge 1,117 litres of space to work with.

Entertainment and safety features

One area where the Kluger came in for criticism from the reviewers was for its infotainment system, which is accessed via a 6.1-inch screen in GX or an 8-inch screen in GXL and Grande. This dated system is well and truly showing its age and lacks the user-friendliness of more modern systems in the Kluger's rivals. There's even a CD player on all models, which an increasingly rare inclusion on most new cars, while the lack of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support is a definite pain.

The good news is the Kluger is no longer dated when it comes to safety tech. There are plenty of electronic bells and whistles to keep you out of trouble on the road, including Lane Departure Alert (very handy in a big car), Blind Spot Monitor and Brake Assist. A reversing camera and rear parking sensors are included on all three models, while the Grande also gets a four-camera panoramic view monitor and front parking sensors.

GXGXLGrande
60:40 split second- and third-row seatsYesYesYes
Driver and front passenger heated seatsNoYesNo
Driver and front passenger heated and ventilated seatsNoNoYes
Active Cruise Control (ACC)YesYesYes
Automatic rain sensing wipersNoYesYes
Manual air conditioningYesNoNo
3-zone automatic climate control air conditioningNoYesYes
9-inch rear seat entertainment with Blu-ray playerNoNoYes
6.1-inch screen audio display with Toyota Link, iPod/USB connectivity, CD player, AM/FM tuner and AUX input for portable audio playersYesNoNo
8-inch screen audio display with advanced Toyota Link, satellite navigation, CD player, iPod/USB connectivity, digital radio and AUX input for portable audio playersNoYesYes
Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Brake Assist (BA) and Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD)YesYesYes
Vehicle Stability Control (VSC)YesYesYes
Hill-start Assist Control (HAC)YesYesYes
Seven SRS airbagsYesYesYes
Pre-collision safety system with pedestrian detectionYesYesYes
Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA)YesYesYes
Lane Departure Alert (LDA) with Steering Control and Sway WarningYesYesYes

The verdict

There are plenty of good reasons why the Kluger has featured at the pointy end of seven-seat SUV sales charts for several years. While it may not be the most glamorous or exciting drive, the Kluger does everything it's meant to do and does it well.

The V6 is a smooth and reliable performer, with the plush and comfortable ride in the Kluger drawing plenty of praise from reviewers. But it's in the practicality stakes where this big SUV really comes into its own. There's ample space inside for mum, dad and a few kids to travel in comfort, plus plenty of handy storage solutions for all the bits and bobs that accompany a family whenever they hit the road. And as you'd expect from Toyota, there's nothing out of place in the cabin and everything is finished to a high quality.

However, there are a few downsides, including the disappointing infotainment system and the high fuel consumption figures of the big V6. While Toyota has an impeccable reputation for reliability, the fact that it continues to offer a 3-year/100,000km warranty when most other manufacturers offer 5 or even 7 years of protection is another disadvantage.

But all things considered, the Kluger has plenty to offer and is well worth a look for anyone shopping for a seven-seat SUV. Make sure you test-drive it alongside the competition, especially the Hyundai Santa Fe, before deciding whether the Toyota Kluger is right for you.

By taking just a few moments to compare car loans below, you could save hundreds of dollars on a new Toyota Kluger.

Don't forget to take a few minutes to compare car insurance for a Toyota Kluger, to save even more!

Compare some options to finance a Toyota Kluger

Data indicated here is updated regularly
$
Name Product Interest Rate (p.a.) Comparison Rate (p.a.) Min Loan Amount Loan Term Application Fee Monthly Service Fee Monthly Repayment
IMB New Car Loan
4.99% (fixed)
5.34%
$2,000
1 to 7 years
$275.12 ($250 Application fee + $25.12 PPS registration fee)
$0
You'll receive a fixed rate of 4.99% p.a.
A low minimum borrowing amount of $2,000 that you can use to purchase a new car or one that's up to two years old.
Loans.com.au - New and Dealer Used Car Loan
From 4.67% (fixed)
5.22%
$5,000
3 to 5 years
$400
$0
You'll receive a fixed rate from 4.67% p.a. based on your risk profile
Finance a new car and benefit from features such as fast approval, no ongoing fees and an optional balloon payment. Note: Settle the loan before 30 November 2020 and enter the draw to win a $1,000 fuel voucher. Terms & conditions apply.
Stratton Finance New Car Loan
From 4.05% (fixed)
5.63%
$10,000
3 to 7 years
$700
$8.25
You'll receive a fixed or variable rate depending on the lender you are approved with
Apply for up to $250,000 and use cash or trade in a vehicle to use as a deposit. Optional balloon payment available.
Heritage Bank Car Loan
4.89% (fixed)
5.53%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
$200
$5
You'll receive a fixed rate from 4.89% p.a.
Finance a new or used car up to 5 years old. Large maximum borrowing amount up to $100,000 and terms up to 7 years.
Credit Concierge Car Loan
From 4.45% (fixed)
5.29%
$10,000
1 to 7 years
$350
$5
You'll receive a fixed rate of 4.45% p.a. with a comparison rate of 5.29% p.a.
Get access to over 20 providers to fund a new or used car.

CUA Secured Fixed Car Loan
6.79% (fixed)
7.16%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
$265 ($175 Establishment Fee + $90 Security Administration Fee)
$0
You'll receive a fixed rate of 6.79% p.a.
A secured loan with a high maximum borrowing amount up to $100,000. Redraw facility and no monthly fees.
NAB Personal Loan Unsecured Fixed
From 9.99% (fixed)
10.88%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
$150
$10
You'll receive a fixed rate between 9.99% p.a. and 18.99% p.a. ( 10.88% p.a. to 19.83% p.a. comparison rate) based on your risk profile
An unsecured loan up to $55,000 you can use for a range of purposes and pay off over up to 7 years. Note: Majority of customers will get the headline rate of 12.69% (13.56% comparison rate) or less. See Comparison rate warning in (i) above.
Symple Loans Personal Loan
From 5.75% (variable)
6.47%
$5,000
1 to 7 years
from 0% to 5% of the loan amount
$10
You'll receive a personalised interest rate from 5.75% p.a. to 21.99% p.a. based on your risk profile
Borrow up to $50,000 to pay for what you need.
Driva Car Loan
From 4.34% (fixed)
5.5%
$2,000
1 to 7 years
$295 (Varies by lender, starting from $295)
$10
You'll receive a fixed rate from 4.34% p.a.
Borrow up to $250,000 with loan terms from 1 to 7 years. Get access to a range of lenders.
Plenti Car Loan
From 4.89% (fixed)
5.44%
$10,000
3 to 7 years
from $249 to $799
$0
You'll receive a fixed rate from 4.89% p.a.
Borrow up to $100,000 with a Plenti Car Loan and benefit from no early repayment or exit fees.
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