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Review of the Toyota Kluger 2021 GXLHybrid
Simran Kaur
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Published on 1st Jul 21

Review Of The Toyota Kluger 2021 Gxlhybrid

The 2021 Toyota Kluger, following in the footsteps of the extremely successful RAV4, Camry, and Corolla, intends to increase fuel economy without considerably raising the asking price.

Finally, we have what is likely to be the most practical and popular choice in the 2021 Kluger lineup: the GXL grade equipped with an all-wheel-drive hybrid powertrain.

In summary, the 2021 Kluger is available in three trim levels: GX, GXL, and Grande. Each of the three models is available with a 3.5-liter petrol V6 engine driving the front or all four wheels. On the other hand, hybrid power is only feasible when all four wheels are driven.

Toyota Kluger 2021 Gxlhybrid

The Kluger is Toyota's eighth and biggest hybrid vehicle in Australia, joining the Prius series, the aforementioned cars, as well as the Yaris, Yaris Cross, and C-HR.

The new Kluger is based on Toyota's new TNGA-K big platform, which shares its underpinnings with the Camry and RAV4, but has been expanded to suit the massive seven-seat SUV.

Toyota's latest-generation 'Dynamic Force' four-cylinder 2.5-litre petrol engine powers the car. It features a 95RON unleaded engine capable of producing 142kW at 6000rpm and 242Nm at 4400rpm.

This is supported by a 6.5-amp-hour nickel-metal hydride battery that powers the front and rear electric motors at 134kW/270Nm and 40kW/121Nm, respectively.

Unlike a plug-in hybrid, this so-called closed-loop hybrid electric vehicle does not have charging capability. Rather than that, the battery is recharged while the vehicle is in motion, such as during coasting or braking. Drivers need just to worry about filling up the gasoline tank, which should occur less frequently. The combined maximum power output is 184kW, however, the combined torque output is not specified.


Additionally, for those interested in minor off-roading, a 'Trail' driving mode modifies the drive, brakes, throttle, and gearbox for mild off-roading. This time, we did not do any off-road testing, but the Kluger should function excellently in some basic low-traction situations.

The GXL includes LED headlights, taillights, and daytime running lights as standard, as well as 18-inch alloy wheels, an 8.0-inch touchscreen display with smartphone mirroring, keyless entry and push-button start, automatic headlights, and automatic wipers.

For an extra cost, GXL trim levels offer heated and powered front seats, tri-zone climate control, synthetic leather upholstery, a motorised tailgate, a 7.0-inch part-digital instrument cluster, and native navigation in the infotainment display.

Misses the mark when compared to the absolute best The Kluger Grande includes a panoramic sunroof, hands-free power tailgate opening, front seat ventilation, a head-up display, a panoramic-view monitor, leather-trimmed seats, an 11-speaker JBL sound system, and 20-inch chromed alloy wheels.

While the hybrid engine lacks the overall dynamism of Toyota's 218kW 2GR V6, it does provide significant fuel savings.

Additionally, the Kluger has grown in every dimension relative to the previous generation: the new model is 76mm larger in length and 25mm taller in height at 4966mm. Additionally, the width has been extended by 5 millimetres and the wheelbase has been lengthened by 60 millimetres (2850mm)

The Kluger, perched on a new platform, proved to be a nice and tranquil abode, at least when the kids weren't too boisterous. The 18-inch alloy wheels are wrapped in a thick layer of Toyo rubber, with the taller sidewalls offering added comfort and absorption around town. Although the electronic steering is not too light, it feels straight and responsive. It is ideal for urban and highway trips.

Another plus is the calibration of the driver assistance systems, which are not so invasive as to be readily deactivated. Adaptive cruise control appears to be responsive, and lane-departure warning does not interfere with normal, safe driving.


Toyota hybrids are known for their seamless transition between gasoline and electric propulsion. Electric motors are capable of progressive acceleration up to a point, while gasoline does not cause jerks or sudden acceleration.

The rate of acceleration is enhanced utilises all available power sources concurrently, with sufficient acceleration to prevent humiliation. While the bigger and heavier Kluger does not offer as much pure electric driving as a Corolla, the difference is negligible in contrast to the efficiency gains.

The infotainment system includes Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and DAB+ digital radio, as well as buttons and knobs for basic functions. 

Toyota's safety credentials are considerably enhanced with the addition of Toyota's Safety Sense suite of technology in this latest-generation Kluger. A combination of cameras and radars enables autonomous emergency braking, traffic sign recognition, rear cross-traffic warning, blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control, and lane centering. Additionally, a rear-view camera is included, as are front and rear parking sensors.

Additionally, the automated emergency braking system runs on a daily and nightly basis for pedestrians, cyclists, and intersections.

While the Kluger's inside is sparse in comparison to the interiors of comparable priced competitors such as the Kia Sorento, Hyundai Santa Fe, and Mazda CX-9, the layout's usefulness and liveability cannot be questioned.

The infotainment system's controls are simplified by the buttons and knobs that surround the screen, and the operating system is straightforward to navigate. Likewise, the climate controls and multifunction display in front of the driver appear to be modern and straightforward to operate.

The second row is comparable in size and comfort, offering more comfort and versatility. Seats are split 60/40 and may be advanced and retracted using low-mounted levers at the entry. Additional levers simplify the process of advancing the seat and tilting it forward in one action, allowing decent access to the third row.

Prior to entering the third row, there are a few other conveniences to mention: dual USB connections, roof-mounted air vents, and controls on the centre console. Each door has a handle that can carry two bottles and a small object such as a wallet. There are cupholders in the flip-down armrest, and the floor mats are of decent quality.

Additionally, the rather shallow transmission tunnel gives plenty leg room for the piggy-in-the-middle, but larger individuals will rub up against one another significantly.

The inclusion of a full-size spare wheel and additional storage compartments for small items in the boot will appeal to road-trippers and regional consumers. There is a dedicated area for a luggage blind, four tie-down points in the boot, and air vents and cupholders are supplied when the third row is occupied.

With the third row folded, the boot capacity increases from (VDA) 241L to 522L as a seven-seater. It extends to 1150L while in van mode.

Additionally, the Kluger got good marks for safety in recent ANCAP testing. For the first five years and 75,000 kilometres, servicing is limited to $250 each visit, with a gap of 12 months and 15,000 kilometres between appointments.

Ending Note: 

Along with the five-year, unlimited-kilometre warranty, Toyota extends coverage on the engine and driveline to seven years if the vehicle is "properly serviced and maintained in accordance with the manufacturer's warranty and service manual" and not used commercially, and the hybrid battery warranty to ten years with an annual hybrid health check.

This finishes a very compelling case for the Kluger as a large family car. While other options in the segment may have a more interesting interior design with superior materials and aesthetics, the Kluger hits all the right notes in critical areas: it's affordable to operate and maintain, safe and comfortable, and has an interior large enough to accommodate seven with adequate amenities.

The Kluger GXL is priced similarly to premium competitors such as the Kia Sorento GT-Line and Hyundai Santa Fe Highlander. Additionally, don't overlook Mazda's venerable yet dependable CX-9. As a result, purchasers are in a fantastic position to choose whatever suits their particular tastes.

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