A Buyer’s Guide to the 2012 Toyota FJ Cruiser | YourMechanic Advice

A Buyer’s Guide to the 2012 Toyota FJ Cruiser

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If you’re looking for a hint of nostaligia in an SUV that can actually handle off-roading like a pro, the 2012 Toyota FJ Cruiser is the perfect choice for you. Designed specifically for tackling those off-road jaunts, what this vehicle lacks in luxury it makes up for in sheer off-road ability.

Key Features

With electronic A-Trac traction control, approach and departure angles for inclines, a ground clearance of 9.6 inches and 32-inch tires, the FJ Cruiser handles nearly any type of terrain. Add in a subwoofer switch that makes your music even better and you have a vehicle you will love to take camping.

Changes for 2012

The only changes on the 2012 Toyota FJ Cruiser was the addition of the Radiant Red paint option being available for the Special Edition Package.

What We Like

While obviously designed as a truck interior, it still provides a modern feel and plenty of comfort along with all that ruggedness. We also loved the available inclinometer that mounts to the dash – it’s always good to know when tipping is imminent!

What Concerns Us

You will have to deal with considerably less fuel economy and available cargo space than what is available in other vehicles in the class. There are also serious blind spots that can make driving a bit tricky if you aren’t careful.

Available Models

The 2012 Toyota FJ Cruiser is available in three different configurations that all use the same 4.0-liter V6 engine that delivers 260 horsepower and 271 lb-ft of torque. The 2WD automatic provides 17/20 mpg city/highway, the 4WD manual gets 15/18 mpg and the 4WD automatic comes in at 17/20 mpg fuel economy.

Major Recalls

There have been five major recalls for the 2012 Toyota FJ Cruiser. These include: Incorrect information on the tire placard that could result in improper inflation of the spare. The front lamps use 55-watt bulbs, which with the mounting angle, drastically increases the glare for oncoming vehicles and does not conform to the Federal Vehicle Motor Safety Standards. Load carrying capacity labels are incorrect, which could lead to overloading the vehicle and/or tires. The rear door access panels are prone to cracking, which could cause the retractor for the seatbelt to detach. Models with TRD brake kits could develop leaks in the brake tube due to insufficient clearance between the wheel and the outside brake tube.

Common Issues

The most common issues reported by owners is that the steering wheel vibrates at around the 55 mph range and above and that the factory lug nuts are prone to breaking.

Toyota FJ cruiser 2012 interior


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Jason

14 years of experience
228 reviews
Jason
14 years of experience
Chrysler 300 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - New York, New York
Very calm, understanding told me the true price flog the vehicle and also helped me negotiate saving me $$$ great mechanic and did the pre purchase inspection good
Honda CR-V - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Flushing, New York
Jason was great, prompt, and extremely helpful! He explained every aspect of his concerns with the car and answered all our questions in detail. Since I don't know much about cars, it was amazing to have someone who explained how things work in a simple but well rounded way. We are so appreciative of his help!

Chris

21 years of experience
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Chris
21 years of experience
Mercedes-Benz SLK280 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Laguna Hills, California
I hired Chris to inspect a car I wanted to purchase. He arrived on time and gave me a very detailed report, took the time to call me after to review details, and share his impression of the car. He was great and very knowledgeable, I would highly recommend him!
Lexus IS250 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Irvine, California
Smooth experience, was able to communicate succinctly and arrived early to the appointment. Thoroughly completed the 50-point check and gave me his professional opinion. His report on the vehicle reflected knowledge on the vehicle, along with giving me his own estimate on the pricing. Definitely helped me with my purchase.

Peter

24 years of experience
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Peter
24 years of experience
BMW X5 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Burbank, California
Peter saved me from buying a lemon. He was extremely knowledgeable, professional and easy to work with. He is extremely through more than the standard and so he would be your go to guy for any picky buyer like I am. THANK YOU PETER!

Jimmi

25 years of experience
69 reviews
Jimmi
25 years of experience
BMW 750Li - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Sanford, Florida
Jimmi is thorough! As I am buying the car unseen, he gave me a very good idea of the overall state of the vehicle. I am very impressed!!! He called me and discussed everything with me. Gold star!

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