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In this post-Ondoy era, many of us would probably agree that the wisest ride to invest in is a yacht. Or a speedboat. But hey, since such a craft is a little over the budget for many of us, the next best thing might be a Toyota Land Cruiser Prado. It's big and proud and powerful. But most importantly, it's baha-ready. [firstpara]

Listen: Prado. The name couldn’t be more apt, no? Its sheer mass alone gives justice to its bullish Prado name. And then come its strong muscular lines, 18-inch wheels, and big-bully stance. The Prado cruises and tears through the land like a ship on full tilt.

Bragging a new 1KD-FTV  powerplant, the Prado has a powerful maximum output of 163 HP, and loads of pulling power across the whole RPM range. Coupled with Toyota’s tried and tested, 4 x 4 system, the Prado is the real man’s SUV. It's ready for anything, come hell or high water. Not that we’re praying for any “high water” anytime soon, of course.

The Prado used to be equipped with an indirect injection system, but to achieve higher fuel efficiency, Toyota gave this one a new direct-injection 4-stroke common rail diesel engine. Don’t get too excited though, the Prado still gulps down fuel like an elephant getting its first taste of rain after a long drought.

Though the Prado is a land giant, Toyota’s vaunted state-of-the-art Kinetic Dynamic Suspension System affords passengers a relatively stable and comfortable ride. The system works by connecting front and rear stabilizers, thereby balancing out each other. Roll is minimal, while traction remains superb at nearly all times.

Additional features further justify the Prado’s 3.5 million peso asking price. It has a projector-type HID headlamps, rain-sensing front wipers, mirror-mounted turn signal lamps, and rear spoiler. The interior reflects the car’s “big-is-better” personality, with spacious seating, luxurious style, and all-around features for making the ride a comfortable one. It’s big, it’s expensive, and it isn’t shy to tell the world about it.

WORDS BY: GELO GONZALES

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