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Toyota Kluger Review

The comprehensive 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.
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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

How does the Toyota Kluger compare with its peers?

1 - 9 of 9
Name Product Number of seats Boot displacement ANCAP rating Price (from) Finder Score Review
Toyota LandCruiser 200
8 seats
620L
5 stars
$143,101
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

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1 - 20 of 20
Name Product Interest Rate (p.a.) Comparison Rate (p.a.) View Details CTA Monthly Repayment
OurMoneyMarket Car Loan - Excellent Credit
From
6.57%
(fixed)
6.57%
Monthly Repayment
$920.43
Finder Exclusive: Apply by December 15th 2023 and if approved, OurMoneyMarket will waive the establishment fee for Excellent Credit Customers.
OurMoneyMarket New Car Loan
From
6.57%
(fixed)
7.19%
Monthly Repayment
$934.23
loans.com.au - New - Variable Rate Special
6.24%
(variable)
7.36%
Monthly Repayment
$936.14
NRMA New Car Loan
From
7.29%
(fixed)
8%
Monthly Repayment
$945.77
Note: Take out a loan for an eligible electric vehicle and receive a 1.5% discount on your personalised interest rate (interest rates start from 5.49% p.a. and comparison rates from 6.19% p.a.)
CarMoney New Car Loan
6.89%
(fixed)
8%
Monthly Repayment
$945.14
Finder Exclusive: Apply for and settle a car loan and get a $200 cashback. Limited time offer. Terms and conditions apply.
Stratton Finance New Car Loan
From
6.52%
(fixed)
6.95%
Monthly Repayment
$931.85
You'll receive a fixed rate from 6.52% p.a. depending on the lender you are approved with.
Apply for up to $300,000 and use cash or trade in a vehicle to use as a deposit. Optional balloon payment available.
RACV New Car Loans
From
7.29%
(fixed)
8%
Monthly Repayment
$945.77
You'll receive a fixed rate from 7.29% p.a.
A larger loan of $5,000 or more to help you buy a new or used car. 5-hour pre approval available and no ongoing fees.
Great Southern Bank Fixed Rate Car Loan
From
6.49%
(fixed)
6.86%
Monthly Repayment
$927.45
You'll receive a fixed rate of 6.49% p.a.
A secured loan with a high maximum borrowing amount up to $100,000. Redraw facility and no monthly fees.
loans.com.au - New - Fixed Rate Special
7.09%
(fixed)
8.21%
Monthly Repayment
$947.92
You'll receive a fixed rate of 7.09% 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.

OurMoneyMarket Used Car Loan - No Vehicle Age Limit
From
6.57%
(fixed)
7.19%
Monthly Repayment
$934.23
NRMA Used Car Loan
From
8.49%
(fixed)
9.21%
Monthly Repayment
$962.64
You'll receive a fixed rate from 8.49% p.a.
Finance a used car with NRMA and benefit from a fixed rate term and no monthly fees. Pre-approval available within 5 business hours.
CarMoney Used Car Loan
6.2%
(fixed)
6.71%
Monthly Repayment
$927.55
Stratton Finance Used Car Loan
From
7.05%
(fixed)
8.36%
Monthly Repayment
$950.79
You'll receive a fixed rate loan from 7.05% p.a. with a comparison rate of 8.36% p.a.
A used car loan of up to $300,000 with quick approval times and balloon payment options.
RACV Used Car Loans
From
8.49%
(fixed)
9.21%
Monthly Repayment
$962.64
You'll receive a fixed rate from 8.49% p.a.
Benefit from no ongoing fees, 5-hour approval and a 21-day satisfaction guarantee. Interest rate discounts for members.
loans.com.au - Variable Rate Used Car < 3 years
7.74%
(variable)
8.85%
Monthly Repayment
$956.98
loans.com.au - Variable Rate Used Car < 5 years
7.74%
(variable)
8.85%
Monthly Repayment
$956.98
loans.com.au - Fixed Rate Used Car < 3 years
From
8.09%
(fixed)
9.2%
Monthly Repayment
$961.89
loans.com.au - Fixed Rate Used Car < 5 years
From
8.29%
(fixed)
9.4%
Monthly Repayment
$964.7
loans.com.au - Fixed Rate Used Car Loan (6 to 7 years)
9.09%
(fixed)
10.2%
Monthly Repayment
$975.99
loans.com.au - Fixed Rate Used Car Loan (8+ years)
12.79%
(fixed)
13.9%
Monthly Repayment
$1,029.22
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Compare car insurance in Australia

If your finance is sorted, you can compare car insurance products for your Toyota Kluger. To compare the products and their features side-by-side, tick the 'Compare' box on the left-hand side. When you're ready to proceed further, click the green 'Get Quote' button.

Name Product Roadside assistance Accidental damage Storm Choice of repairer Agreed or market value
Budget Direct Comprehensive
Optional
Optional
Agreed or Market
Finder's summary: The 2023 winner of our Best Value Car Insurance award. It's cheaper than most, plus you can lower costs by adding age restrictions.

⭐ Current offer: 15% off your first year's premium when you take out a policy online. T&Cs apply.

Who it might be good for: Anyone who wants a good value policy.
Youi Comprehensive
Optional
Agreed or Market
Finder's summary: The 2023 winner of our Best Features Car Insurance award. Plus, it's one of the only insurers to automatically include roadside assistance.

Who it might be good for: Those who want good customer service with lots of inclusions.
Australia Post Comprehensive
Optional
Agreed or Market
Finder's summary: Covers a little more than other insurers. You don’t need to pay an excess for windscreen repairs and cover applies to anyone who uses your car.

⭐ Current offer: Get $75 off your first year's comprehensive car insurance premium when you buy online. T&Cs apply.

Who it might be good for: Multiple people using one car.
QBE Comprehensive
Green Company
QBE Comprehensive
Optional
Agreed or Market
Finder's summary: Our best-rated Car Insurer for Customer Satisfaction in 2021/2022 and Green Insurer for the last 3 years.

⭐ Current offer: Save $75 when you purchase a new comprehensive policy online. T&Cs apply.

Who it might be good for: Those who want a trustworthy insurer and more cover than other brands, such as 3-year new car replacement (e.g. they'll give you money for a new car for up to 3 years if yours is written off).
Kogan Comprehensive
Optional
Agreed or Market
Finder's summary: Kogan comes with all the perks that most comprehensive car insurance policies include, but you'll also be entitled to some benefits from its online store. This usually comes in the form of a gift voucher or discount if you buy online.

⭐ Current offer: Get $125 off first year premiums when you purchase Kogan Comprehensive Car Insurance online + $10 monthly kogan.com credit. T&Cs apply.

Who it might be good for: Kogan shoppers and those after a good range of policy options.
Qantas Comprehensive
Optional
Optional
Agreed or Market
Finder's summary: You need car insurance so why not get one that lets you earn Qantas Points? It's good value too (it's underwritten by the same insurer as Budget Direct). .

⭐ Current offer: Earn up to 50,000 Qantas Points with every Qantas Car Insurance policy you take out by 5 December. T&Cs apply.

Who it might be good for: People who want more bang for their buck with Qantas Points.
Bingle Comprehensive
Market
Finder's summary: Our data shows it’s the cheapest comprehensive policy. It just covers the basics such as damage to your car, theft and storms – it doesn’t go in for add-ons and extras.

Who it might be good for: Those wanting a low-cost, no-frills policy.
ROLLiN' Comprehensive
Agreed
Finder's summary: One of the most cost-effective insurers for under 25s, according to Finder research, with no aged-based excess.

Who it might be good for: Young drivers looking to keep costs down and anyone who’d like to get more flexibility from their car insurance.
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