Interior / Exterior » 9
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STYLING | 9 out of 10
interior design...stays true to the original FJ philosophy by being straightforward and functional rather than overly stylized and littered with gimmicks
a modern African safari vehicle
styling is very retro and the black matte hood sticker adds even more of a throwback look
the temperature-control knobs look like they belong on a Lego Duplo play table
Car and Driver
The Toyota FJ Cruiser's design sits perfectly balanced between the realms of modern and ageless, so it's a good thing that it hasn't seen any style changes since it debuted nearly a decade ago.
You'll find pieces of the 1960's FJ40 in the design, but it's been updated with cartoonish, sometimes silly design elements that simply come together as something cool. The HUMMER lineup had the same kind of presence on the road, but the FJ outlasted them–we almost feel like this is what a MINI would look like if the brand ever decided to attempt something truly rugged and off-road worthy.
It's that old-style front end, steep windshield and retro cues that make the FJ so special. That design also lends itself to some added practicality, too. For instance, its side doors open at 90-degree angles for easy entry and exit. And, the glass hatch can be opened quickly and easily for trips to the grocery store.
The chunky, almost technical look continues into the cabin which is dominated by a somewhat drab instrument panel featuring matte-metallic highlights. Traditional round gauges are separated into clusters in the dash, and meshy seating with contrasting body-color inserts establish a serious basic-truck attitude; on the bright side—and in keeping with the retro-goodness—significant portions of the dash are done in the same color as the exterior.
The FJ Cruiser strikes a timelessly cool pose, and has an interior with lots of big, expressive shapes.