Toyota says cumulative global sales of its Land Cruiser series have surpassed 10 million units some 68 years after the original vehicle launched.

Billed as the Japanese firm’s “longest-selling car”, the Land Cruiser launched on 1 August 1951 (although it was then badged as the “Toyota Jeep BJ”, before its name was officially changed to "Land Cruiser" in 1954.).

Full-scale exports of the Land Cruiser began with the 20 Series, which was introduced in November 1955, four years after the launch of the first-generation vehicle.

Back then, fewer than 100 units were exported from Japan each year, but by 1965 (a decade later) that figure had surpassed 10 000 units. Currently, the Land Cruiser is sold in about 170 countries and regions, with annual global sales standing at approximately 400 000 units.

So, what’s next for the iconic badge? Well, Toyota seems to have no intention of slowing down.

“Going forward, in order to continue to cater to – and even exceed – customer expectations, development of the Land Cruiser will take place on the premise that it will be used in every corner of the world,” the firm said.

“To this end, Toyota itself intends to set more rigorous standards, and to continue to engage in car-making with the goal of creating a truly unique car.”

In South Africa, the Land Cruiser range currently includes the 70 Series (comprising the 76 wagon and 79 bakkie derivatives), the Prado and the 200 Series.