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The legendary Toyota Land Cruiser has hit sales of over 10 million units after being on sale for 68 continuous years. The Land Cruiser is Toyota’s longest selling model and an important part of the brand’s DNA.

When the Land Cruiser debuted in 1951 as a mobility vehicle for Japan’s National Police Reserve, it was a simple machine focused on tackling difficult terrain. Toyota was able to refine its Land Cruiser concept during the Korean conflict and had a model ready for export when the restrictions were lifted that year.

Gallery: Toyota Land Cruiser Reaches 10 million units sold

When the Land Cruiser BJ was introduced, Toyota used it to take on feats only previously possible on horseback. The Land Cruiser replicated a legendary Samurais climbed to the top of Mount Atago and followed in the traditional pilgrimage route to the sixth station on the top of Mount Fuji. These impressive feats help the Land Cruiser slowly phase out the Mitsubishi built America Jeep designs for Japan’s military forces.

After the high success of the first generation Land Cruiser a new model debuted known as the 20 Series. This second-generation vehicle was updated to be more comfortable for civilian use and saw the first non-military customers. The legendary reliability of the Land Cruiser was forged during the launch of the 20 Series.

Thanks to a strong reception during American military trials in 1957, Toyota was confident enough to export the Land Cruiser to emerging markets. In most cases, the Land Cruiser was the first Toyota to enter these new countries and represented 38.2% of Japanese Vehicle exports in1957.

As time went on the Land Cruiser saw over 14 model variations over its 68-year production run. Today the Land Cruiser is a large comfortable SUV that still offers incredible reliability and strong off-road abilities. Although today’s Land Cruiser is more focused on comfort and Luxury it continues to be an important part of what makes Toyota a legendary brand of engineering excellence and reliability.

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Toyota Motor Corporation (Toyota) announces today that cumulative global sales of its Land Cruiser series have surpassed 10 million.

Toyota’s longest-selling vehicle, Land Cruiser was launched in 1951 and production has continued for 68 years. From early days as a mobility vehicle for Japan’s National Police Reserve, there have been 14 different models with thousands of variations. During this time, Land Cruiser has become a cult vehicle for those who require eminently reliable four-wheel drive capability and, being the world’s most consumer-trusted vehicle, embodies Toyota’s QDR ethos of quality, durability and reliability.

Land Cruiser exports began in 1955, when around 100 vehicles would leave Japan each year, with subsequent fast-rising demand leading to growth of exports topping 10,000 by the mid-1960s. Land Cruiser first appeared officially in the UK in 1975, with sales across Europe helping Toyota reach the million mark by 1980. Today, Land Cruiser is sold in approximately 170 countries worldwide, with annual global sales totalling around 400,000.

From its beginnings as a military workhorse through the second generation, 20 series, civilian utility vehicle, Land Cruiser conquered the globe as a means of fulfilling mobility needs in often challenging terrain. There are many countries in which Land Cruisers are still in commercial use some 50 years after production.

In Africa, Land Cruiser can often be found providing humanitarian assistance.

In Australia, Land Cruiser is used to provide essential mobility in zinc and copper mines some 1,600 metres underground.

In Costa Rica, there are regions where Land Cruiser is used to harvest carrots at altitudes of 3,500 metres, on slopes so steep that even humans have difficulty standing.  Interestingly, this fact allows us to trace Land Cruiser’s roots back to the testing regime for the very first model.  The vehicle was tested by tackling and succeeding at technological feats only previously possible on horseback.  Those tests involved replicating a samurai warrior’s legendary climb to the Shinto temple at the top of Mount Atago and driving up the old pilgrim route to the sixth station on Mount Fuji.

The 10 million Land Cruisers sold over the course of the last 68 years have been used on a variety of different roads and have contributed to the refinement of Toyota cars across its range.

Going forward, development of Land Cruiser will take place on the premise that it will continue to be used in every corner of the world, with Toyota setting ever more rigorous standards for its unique vehicle.

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