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2024 Toyota Compact Cruiser, All you want to know & watch about a Great Car



2024 Toyota Compact Cruiser: The Baby FJ EV You Didn’t Know You Wanted

Toyota’s pivot to EVs could be a boon for off-road enthusiasts, including an all-electric follow-up to the iconic FJ Cruiser.

Toyota Compact Cruiser EV SUV Concept 7


After initially doubling down on hydrogen and hybrids, Toyota appears to be pivoting slowly toward battery electric vehicles. One of the models that’ll anchor this directional change is the new 2024 Toyota Compact Cruiser. A follow-up of sorts to the beloved FJ Cruiser (which left our market in 2014 but still soldiers on in the Middle East), the Compact Cruiser is a pint-sized electric off-roader built in the same vein as early ’90s classics such as the Suzuki Samurai. This small electric off-roader sports four doors, plenty of ground clearance, tucked-away bumpers, all-terrain tires, and beefy-looking skidplates, all of which ought to make it a hoot off-road.

Toyota Compact Cruiser EV SUV Concept 9


Toyota is finally coming on strong in the EV space, promising 10 new “lines” of EVs by 2025, and the Compact Cruiser will be part of that salvo. While models like the 2023 Toyota bZ4X cover Toyota’s more conservative audience, the Compact Cruiser, previewed here with images of the Toyota Compact Cruiser Concept from earlier this year, aims to satisfy legions of Toyota’s hardcore off-road enthusiasts by offering more traditional Land Cruiser styling cues in an efficient, modern package.


We don’t know a ton about what’s underneath the Compact Cruiser’s sheetmetal, but we think it’s a safe assumption we’ll find Toyota’s new e-TNGA platform, also found underpinning the bZ4x and Subaru Solterra. We expect the Compact Cruiser to offer dual-motor all-wheel drive and somewhere in the realm of 250 hp or so. If that’s the case, don’t expect it to be a range or charging champ—the more aerodynamic all-wheel-drive bZ4X nets 222 miles of range in its least efficient form and is among the slowest-charging EVs on the market.



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2024 Toyota Compact Cruiser Starting at $35,000 est

toyota compact cruiser ev concept


Toyota has a history of capable off-road SUVs, from the FJ Cruiser to the 4Runner to the luxurious Land Cruiser. While the Land Cruiser is leaving the American market starting in 2022 and the FJ Cruiser hasn’t been sold here since 2014, Toyota is intent on staying competitive in the off-road space as the market transitions to electric vehicles, and will launch a tough compact electric SUV in the coming years. Previewed by the Compact Cruiser EV concept, the SUV will get boxy styling and rugged bumpers and body cladding. Very little is known about the electric powertrain, but the instant torque of electric motors should make it decently quick and adept at navigating rough terrain.

What’s New for 2024?

The Compact Cruiser EV will be an all-new model for Toyota when it launches, and presumably will have a more creative name. We expect the electric off-roader to arrive for the 2024 model year. It will likely share some suspension and powertrain components with other upcoming electric Toyotas, but there is not much information yet on the mechanical components of the Compact Cruiser EV.


Pricing and Which One to Buy

$35,000 (est)
$40,000 (est)
$45,000 (est)

We estimate the price of the 2024 Compact Cruiser EV will start at around $35,000. We’ll know more about trim levels and pricing for the Compact Cruiser EV as the on-sale date nears.

toyota compact cruiser ev concept

2024 Toyota LiteCruiser EV: Release Date, Price, and Features — an Electric FJ Cruiser-Style SUV! — What We Know so Far


Toyota has a long history of producing off-road capable SUVs. This includes the 4Runner, Land Cruiser, and FJ Cruiser. However, the Land Cruiser was discontinued in the United States in 2022, and the last time the FJ Cruiser was sold in America was in 2014. As Toyota makes the move toward EVs, it aims to retain its edge for off-road SUVs. Enter the 2024 Toyota Compact Cruiser EV, also known as the LiteCruiser EV — an all-electric FJ Cruiser-style SUV. Find out what we know so far about the release date, price, and features of the 2024 Toyota LightCruiser EV.


When will the 2024 Toyota LightCruiser EV be released and available?

Green 2024 Toyota LiteCruiser EV, aka Compact Cruiser EV, parked on a large rock, highlighting its release date and price

The release date of the 2024 Toyota LightCruiser EV SUV will likely be in late 2023 or early 2024. The Compact Cruiser EV will be available to buy at Toyota dealerships throughout the United States and in select international markets. For pre-order/reservation information for the LightCruiser EV, stay tuned.

How much does the 2024 Toyota LightCruiser EV cost?

Toyota didn’t yet release the price information for the 2024 LightCruiser EV. However, Car and Driver estimates that the starting cost of the Compact Cruiser EV will be $35,000. The automotive site also speculated that the LightCruiser EV could offer three trims: LE, XLE, and Limited, with the following starting prices:

  • LE: $35,000
  • XLE: $40,000
  • Limited: $45,000


2024 LightCruiser EV specs: Electric powertrain and all-wheel drive system

Front view of blue 2024 Toyota LiteCruiser EV, aka Compact Cruiser EV, highlighting its release date and price


Toyota hasn’t revealed much information about the 2024 LightCruiser EV SUV. However, we expect the Compact Cruiser EV to share powertrain components with some of the automaker’s upcoming electric vehicles, such as a possible Tacoma EV pickup truck. Currently, the only electric vehicle that Toyota offers in the U.S. is the bZ4X crossover SUV.

Given the off-road emphasis of the LightCruiser EV, it will undoubtedly offer an all-wheel drive system. This means that the Compact Cruiser EV will offer at least two electric motors, with a motor for both the front and rear wheels.


Award-winning design of the 2024 LightCruiser EV

Silver 2024 Toyota LiteCruiser EV, aka Compact Cruiser EV, with mountains in the background, highlighting its release date and price

The 2024 Toyota LightCruiser was previewed as a concept model in December 2021, along with many other Toyota electric vehicles. Despite its relatively recent unveiling, the Compact Cruiser EV was already honored for its design. It won the 2022 Car Design Award for Concept Vehicles, as detailed by Drive. The LightCruiser beat out a competitive field of other finalists, including the Porsche Mission R, Polestar O2, Audi Skysphere, and Lexus Electrified Sport.

Fans of the FJ Cruiser will notice design similarities for the LightCruiser EV, including its boxy body, flat roof, upright A-pillars, and large windows. The Compact Cruiser also draws inspiration from the first-generation Land Cruiser.

The 2024 Toyota Compact Cruiser EV: What You Need to Know

It’s compact, it’s boxy, and it looks a lot like the FJ Cruiser.

computer rendering of the toyota compact cruiser ev driving on a rocky desert trail

Back in December, Toyota revealed an absolute onslaught of new electric car concepts. My eyes immediately flew to the back corner, where there was an electric pickup that looked very much like a Tacoma EV…and right next to it was a small, boxy, off-road SUV with heavy cladding, a skid plate and a roof rack. Toyota is calling the concept the Compact Cruiser EV.

Here’s what we know about the Compact Cruiser EV so far.


The Compact Cruiser is likely to be a crossover

toyota compact cruiser ev prototype

The Compact Cruiser takes styling cues from the first-gen Land Cruiser. But it looks very much like it runs on a car platform. And Toyota’s description of the target buyer — “young, professional urban dwellers who enjoy active outdoor leisure interests” — screams crossover.

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The Compact Cruiser offers all-wheel-drive

toyota compact cruiser prototype parked on driveway with trees in the background
It’s not too surprising given the off-road aesthetic. But Toyota says the Compact Cruiser appeals to those looking for a “go anywhere, all-wheel-drive experience.” So a production version should come with AWD — if it’s not standard.

The Compact Cruiser is already award-winning

toyota compact cruiser ev prototype parked on a driveway with trees in background
Toyota’s Compact Cruiser won a 2o22 Car Design Award — which organizers describe as the Oscar of world car design — at Milano Design Week, beating out the stunning Polestar O2.

Expect the Compact Cruiser EV to stay small

2022 toyota compact cruiser ev
Toyota didn’t get cute naming its EV concepts. The EV pickup was called the “Pickup EV.” So Toyota including “compact” is probably a reference to body size. The Compact Cruiser EV also looks smaller than the Pickup EV, which looks like a midsize truck. Expect the Compact Cruiser to be more of a Ford Bronco Sport than a Bronco fighter.

Will the Compact Cruiser be called the Land Cruiser?

toyota compact cruiser ev prototype
We’d expect “Cruiser” to be in the production name somewhere. Something like “bZ Cruiser” could work pretty well. However, Toyota trademarked “Trailhunter” last year, so who knows.

Is the Compact Cruiser the new FJ Cruiser?

toyota fj cruiser
The Compact Cruiser looks like a smaller version of the FJ Cruiser, a quirky, modernized take on the old FJ40 Land Cruiser. A niche enthusiast base has kept the FJ Cruiser’s used prices sky-high and has longed for its return. This vehicle — in a more commercially viable and environmentally friendly form — may be the closest we get.

The Compact Cruiser may be the FT-4X concept, but electric

toyota ft4x concept
Toyota revealed a cool FT-4X concept back in 2017. It was a tiny, affordable, off-road crossover with nifty, sort-of-Ford Maverick-like styling targeted at young people. Toyota has not put it into production, but the Compact Cruiser EV could be very much that but electric.

When will the Compact Cruiser EV arrive?

toyota compact cruiser ev in blue
Toyota has not yet revealed a launch date for the Compact Cruiser EV, but we expect it to be relatively soon. Toyota promised to launch 15 new BEVS by 2025; Toyota revealed 15 new EV concepts back in December. So we’d bet the production Compact Cruiser will be on the road by then.

2024 Toyota Compact Cruiser, On Youtube


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