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Toyota Tarago XR 50 (2006-Present)

Toyota Tarago XR 50 (2006-Present)

4.2 from 25 reviews

Toyota Tough

An ex fleet vehicle with low odometer reading for its age. Has very light steering for a people mover and moves well through the gears in city driving. Don't know much about the technical aspects of this vehicle but purchased to meet need to carry safely a young family of seven. Extra anchor points were retro fitted in accordance with Australian rules as child restraints of various styles are used at this stage and there were originally no anchor points in the back row. Six CD audio unit has a persistent bug and now only use a USB devise or blue tooth to play selected music. But radio AM/FM still okay. Recently the centre seat belt in the second row of seats was fully extended and would not retract - replacement by qualified mechanic cost $700.00 including parts and labour. Automatic box with petrol engine runs well on e10 fuel but not as economic as more modern vehicles. Metallic paint still is good order with only fading on foil over rear hatch otherwise still looks near new.

BadgeGLX
Engine Size2.4
TransmissionAutomatic
Date PurchasedApr 2018

Best vehicle I've owned so far. 2006 Estima 3.5 V6, AWD, 8 seater

This is a review for the 2006 Toyota Estima 3.5 V6, 6 speed auto, AWD, 8 seater (This is the Japanese market Toyota Tarago, which you can buy from most importers here in Australia). Feature level is equivalent to an Ultima + more. Seats are like a GLX (non-leather)

I've also driven the 2.4L 4cyl, CVT, FWD, 8 seater for a week, so I can give a reasonably good insight into that version too.

Due to family growth and the love of road trips we decided to purchase a people mover after weighing up against station wagons and SUVs.

Our 1st experience was on a holiday to NZ where we rented the base model 4cyl (2.4L) 2wd CVT, 8 seat version of the Estima, we were impressed with the ride quality, handling and features. Power of the 2.4 was adequate (just enough) to get the job done touring NZ (5 adults, 1 child and luggage). Being a 2WD model we found the wheels spin too easily on wet roads and/or gravel.

Once we got back to AU we decided to get an Estima or Tarago for ourselves at some point. Having extra creature comforts is a welcome bonus, but the non-negotiable items were climate control, cruise, AWD, V6 and 8 seater. I found out later that the Australian delivered Tarago never had an AWD option (which is unfortunate). We ended up purchasing via a car dealer that specialises in Japanese grey market imports.

Pros:
- Comfortable
- Quiet
- Great handling (for a people mover)
- Well thought out interior design, very efficient in space.
- 4cyl with the CVT is extremely good on fuel and can run on 91RON regular unleaded.
- V6 version is a extremely quick for a people mover. 0 to 100km/h mid 7s range according to my VBOX
- My Estima also has a few more features compared to the Aus. delivered Tarago. Such as AWD, premium sound system, premium cloth interior, automated parking (reverse and parallel), dual electric sliding doors, 110V AC power point and triple parking cameras (front, rear and left side).
- AWD has excellent grip on all surfaces. AWD system can be set to auto or disabled.
- Toyota reliability, commonality and ease of access to genuine parts. Basically anyone that can work on a Camry can work on these.

Cons:
- V6 is quite thirsty around urban areas (as expected)
- V6 requires 95RON premium fuel as a minimum
- AWD version is heavier and has more mechanical drag which adds fuel consumption
- 4cyl version needs to be driven hard to get power.
- FWD version is easily prone to wheel spin in the wet, loose surfaces and when taking off on hills
- Some interior plastics are flimsy
- AWD model doesn't have provision for spare tire, it needs run flat tires. (In my scenario, I simply load a spare tire and tire slime into the back when heading out of the city).
- Estima costs more to insure compared to the Aus. delivered Tarago.

BadgeEstima
Engine Size3.5
TransmissionAutomatic
Date PurchasedJun 2018

A disappointing cramped fuel guzzler

We upgraded from an older Toyota Hiace Super custom to the 2014 Tarago. we have 6 kids and I knew from the start it was too small but went against my gut and now regret it. 8 seats yes but don’t expect to fit a realistic family of 8 comfortably. 2 adults, 2 teenage boys and 4 younger kids and no one is happy.
Add the terrible fuel consumption of the 4 cylinder and it’s a big regret on my part.
For a smaller say 4 kid family zipping around the suburbs it probably do fine but a big family

BadgeGLi
Engine Size2.4
TransmissionAutomatic
Date PurchasedAug 2017

Great and durable car!

Driving experience is great! Very smooth and great if your looking for a family car. I suggest if your looking for a car with better interior designs but less durability, get the Nissan Elgrand. Reliability is great and is cheap for its price. Servicing is cheap since the parts are basically everywhere

BadgeGLi
Engine Size2.4
TransmissionAutomatic
Date PurchasedJul 2012

Perfect Family car

This is a great family car, drives very smoothly and noise is limited. The dashboard and interior are quite nice but now out-dated compared to other cars. There is a lot of leg room for the front two rows but a bit squishy at the back. It is not heavy on fuel which is + and is quite affordable to run it but we do have another car. It is a beautiful family car, with it seating so many people and looking so good.

BadgeGLi
Engine Size2.4
TransmissionAutomatic
Date PurchasedMay 2012

The best ever!!!

The seven seat Tarago Ultima is the most amazing car. The flexibility of the seating arrangement / storage area is fantastic. You can even comfortably sleep in it if need be. From the kids point of view the best aspect of the car is the leg rests that come up from the two seats in the middle row. It is an extremely powerful and smooth car to drive and guest (friends) that drive the car comment on how great it is. Very economical even though you can only use premium unleaded petrol in it. There is nothing that I could question with this vehicle. It is superb!!

BadgeUltima
Engine Size3.5
TransmissionAutomatic
Date PurchasedApr 2015

A fantastic car!

I bought the 2005 3L estima for my growing family and business. This vehicle is comfortable, modern and the designers anticipated every need I could have thought of. When I got it I thought it would feel insecure to drive, it's so tall! But instead it is a solid, secure and well balanced power/manoeuvrability drive. The extra space inside allows easy travel from the front to the back seats, great for young families, and there's heaps of boot space.


Great for family day outings!

Mine is a 7 seater bought secondhand, 2015 model. Performance is great, fuel efficient for such a big car and V6 engine, pretty smooth and quiet drive. Just that passengers in the back row can feel more of the bumps and turns compared to those in front and the middle.

But what I like about this car is the ability to move the middle seats where both car seats are (one front facing and one rear facing) easily and widening the middle space for passengers to move to the back and also preventing harsh sun on the kids during summer. Next thing I love about this car is the boot space and ease of lowering the back row seats for bigger boot space. Lastly the safety features where the door does not automatic open when gear is not in park.

The only I would recommend is never to get a light coloured interior and if only the boot door is automatic that will be perfect as the boot door tend to get stucked when opening. Not sure why.

But this is indeed a people mover as I use this for kids, grandparents and hubs and I.

BadgeUltima
Engine Size3.5
TransmissionAutomatic
Date PurchasedJan 2017

No Lumbar support ,2 fake A/C outlets at back

Great to drive but not economic to run ,couple of my friends convert the van into LPG. I use the van as maxi Taxi my average spending is $55 .
When my friends converred into LPG the average went into $35. The coast to convert the van is around $4000.

BadgeGLi
Engine Size2.4
TransmissionAutomatic
Date PurchasedDec 2016

Does the job!

Its clearly the best in people movers! Ours is a 2007 Toyota Estima G/ Tarago GLX, its an 8 seater and comes with dual electric sliding doors, electric tailgate, electric folding mirrors, bluetooth controls on the steering wheel, rear tinted windows, multi function display on speedometer, rear DVD player which plays from the speakers - ours comes with the $4000 sound system option
Driving experience:
This doesn't feel like a van, it feels like an average sedan, when you go up a hill on low throttle it automatically chooses the right gear to go up - ours is the 3.5L V6 model, the corners are fair but not best, on tight corners the vehicle tends to roll a bit, ours has three cameras - front, rear and left side!
Bad things about the interior
I don't like the idea of where the cup holders are - they look small and misplaced, Toyota seriously, you could have made a center console there!
- Only if there was a HUD display, the speedometer is too far towards the left of your field of vision
Running costs and reliability
Being a Toyota its what you expect, reliability is kept at its best and for fuel for us once a week $50 for a full tank, not bad for a heavy car!

BadgeGLX
TransmissionAutomatic

2014 Tarago Ultima V6

The build quality is excellent, as one would expect in relation to a car that has been on the market for 8-9 years. In many respects the quality of the Tarago is Lexus-like. Personally, I think the leather is superior to the Mercedes.
The drive is terrifically smooth. The combination of the ride, engine and transmission is silky. The 3.5 litre V6 is responsive and always in the right mood.
As mentioned by others, the third row does not have ISOFIX nor does it have a latch to tether a child seat. It is, however, suitable for booster seats (children aged 5 and above usually). For our family that is fine, we have the 5 year old at the back.
The middle row of captain chairs are equipped with ISOFIX and have a latch at the bottom rear of the chair. The captain chairs are quite handy as the can move forward/back and side-to-side. We have our baby and 2 year old in the captain chairs. The power sliding doors are so handy with kids, as is the keyless entry and start. The air-conditioning is spectacular: so much better than European counterparts in Australian weather.
The xenon headlights are powerful and the adaptive system works well.
Now for the complaints:
1) a reversing camera is not standard (you can have a genuine one fitted and there is already a hole for it in the rear chrome garnish in the tailgate);
2) the speakers are awful (In Asia they have the option of a far superior sound system with tweeters built into the front door);
3) the rear tailgate is not electrically powered (again in Asia they have this option available);
4) the DVD player does not play it sound through the car's audio system but ONLY through the infra red headphones which are curiously too large for small children (again in Asia the DVD player can play sound through the sound system);
5) the AVN navigation head unit is counter-intuitive and confusing to use (that being said, once learned it becomes manageable);
6) the mirrors do not retract automatically.
7) the speedometer is difficulty to read due to its distance from you and it's central placement: it really should be digital given that it is so far away from the line of sight;
8) the bluetooth phone function can only be operated from the head unit, which distracts one from driving (in Asia - i sound like a broken record - they are on the steering wheel);

A lot of my grievances are with the specification of the Australian model. I have inferred that the Japanese spec head unit must not have been compatible with Australia (presumably from a navigation perspective). But there have been knock-on effects in functionality that really frustrate me. The other commissions are hard to fathom, except from a costs saving perspective. But you know what? I would have rather optioned mine up and then waited a few months for it to built and shipped. But this is not the Toyota way it seems.

Having aired my grievances, I can still say hand on heart that there is no better vehicle out there for our family. It's just that - it could so easily have been perfected. Despite this, we love it.


Good family car, but that's it...

We bought the Tarago for family get around (the other is an Audi small hatch). It's the Ultima trim with V6 engine and full leather interior

Verdict:
Good practicality, huge boot, sits 7 and heaps of room. The leather seats are heated and makes it looks rather special. Two sunroof are good to have open on nice days to give airy feeling to the interior (glass cannot be opened though). Sliding doors are a blessing in tight car parks and loading in kids. Pilot style second row seat are nice to travel in as they have recliners and foot rest like first class passenger (two seats only).

Bad: V6 engine runs on RON95 and thirsty, very very thirsty (be warned!). Despite leather interior you can tell its synthetic and some parts are vinyl leatherette. Looks real el-cheapo especially if you had European car. Sunroof glass can't be opened only the inside liner, although front sunroof can be tilted up but that's it. Children safety seats can only be fitted in second row and not third row due to lack of ADR approved anchor fitting in third row. (Although one can squeeze thru to third row from in between second row pilot seat gaps in the middle.) navigation is rather fiddly to use and won't allow any changes unless you're totally stopped. Maybe for safety by apparently Toyota never heard of passengers sitting in front seat able to help changing navigation settings?
Road handling although comfy but totally uninspiring to drive (yawn) as expected with all Toyotas. Front suspension cradle seems like falling apart when hitting a rather sharp bumps and doesn't feel as solid as European cars (cannot compete with my A3). No trip computer - feels a bit dated for these computer age

TransmissionAutomatic
BadgeUltima

2010 v6 GLi. Fantastic car for family with 3 kids

We are a family of 2 adults, 3 kids and usually my father-in-law too. We spent months test driving iMax, Odyssey, Carnival and looking for the best deal. Bought the 2010 v6 gli and couldn't be happier. Roomy, comfy, a shedload of power, can drive all day without getting sore, great to separate the kids, everything within reach. After years of paying out on Tarago owners I must admit I am totally sold on this car. I love it.

Transmissionauto

V6 Ultima bought with 203000kms on the clock.

Had it for a year so far and can't fault it.
Got it cheap 23k for a 2008. Powerful engine handles really well considering size. Smooth transmission.
Had a Prado, Kids much prefer the Tarago.
Love the captain seats in the middle row.
The electric doors, the electric foldaway seats. Everything works and keeps working.
Haven't even had it serviced yet. Better do that.
Engine Power, and those electric sliding rear doors
Light interior marks a bit easy.


Love tarago s

I am currently waiting delivery of my 5th Tarago, this is my first brand new one. A 2013 GLX. We have found them reliable, economical and comfortable. We are foster carers and need flexibility, we also take the grandparents on holidays with us regularly. Nice to drive does not feel like a tank, easy to park and they look great. It uses half the petrol of our much smaller Subaru forester. I have been driving Taragos since the 80s. We sometimes have 5 baby seats and booster with no issues. Love this car would recommend them to anyone. Very comfortable drive. I have sold the last 3 for what I paid so hold their value well. Sold privately as soon as they are listed
Style, comfort, fuel economy
Hard to get


Excellent Very reliable family car!

We are a family of 6 and we own a 2008 Toyota tarago glx. We bought it new and it has been a dream to drive since the time we drove it off the lot. I knew exactly what Tarago I wanted so had no hesitation In purchasing this vehicle directly from a Toyota dealer off the Internet.

It is our second tarago as we upgraded from the older style because of the back sliding doors. Our old tarago was always reliable and never let us down so there was no second thought In upgrading to the model we now have. A bit pricey than other vehicles of the same style but you will get a very reliable and large family comfortable car! Highly recommended! Oh what a feeling!
Great overall family car
The dashboard display is not easy to see. I can't see the 'nearly empty' petrol light when it comes on because it is at the bottom of the dashboard display.

TransmissionAutomatic

Excellent vehicle...if your thinking shall I buy...BUY!

Bought a 2001 Toyota Estima model...yes I know...it's the the Non Australian version of the Toyota Tarago... but very similar to the Tarago. I thoroughly enjoyed everything about it! Tonnes of room for our big family, doors on both sides for ease of getting in and out. Tonnes of space in the back and very easy for kids to get to the back without standing on the seats. Motor is not thirsty either, very economical to run. Would absolutely recommend for a large family. Also, is great for sticking a DVD player on the centre cieling and the kids were entertained on every trip!
Reliable, fuel efficient, aesthetically pleasing, back window tints, back windows also power windows not push outs.

TransmissionAutomatic
3 comments
Looking at the Estima as well. Would you recommend the 2.4L or is it under-powered? There is the 3.0L version and it might just provide that extra boost?how many child anchor points are there in the car? Looking at getting a 2002 model but will need to have 3 child anchor pointsHi Sonny68, by Non Australian do you mean a Jap import? I am thinking of getting one too, as they seem to offer better seats and V6 motors as well. But where are you servicing your Estima? Did you buy your vehicle from a dealer? Hope to hear from you. Thanks!'

Excellent

I always said I would never drive a Tarago but with bub no.4 joining our family we needed a people mover if we ever wanted to go out as a family ever again! I love this car!It is easy to drive and smooth, it doesn't feel as though you are driving a people mover at all.Parking is easy too, if anyone finds it hard to park the Tarago, then they must also find it hard to park other cars also.The only issue is that I am short and can't really see how much room I have in front when parking, but I am taking notes and getting better at judging it now. I love it when it rains and I can get all the kids in the car, we close all the doors and I proceed to walk around the car to do up seatbelts.I then walk back to the front,hop into the drivers seat and off we go! No more wet bum from it sticking out in the rain. There is ducted air con all the way to the very back seat so everyone has their own air, the seats slide forward and back on rails also.Seats are comfortable and the driver and passenger have arm rests. Also lots of cup holders for everyone and 6 different lights inside. Feels like you are on a plane trip with your own cabin! I would recommend this people mover to anyone with kids. You don't even need a large family. We bought ours second hand (5 years old)and it's price was VERY reasonable!
Tarago GLX: So much space,well set up interior,easy to drive, smooth,very good on fuel
Love everything about it!

2 comments
buying one for son and family could you suggest a good modleI brought one today a 2008 glx its great.

Good

We love it. Apart from the "Cons" listed above, both my wife and I love driving this vehicle. We (a family of 3) have many needs that identified the Tarago as the best vehicle to suit our needs. We often need to move theatre props and costumes (and other related bits) as well as a number of elderly parents in the eighties with baggage. I equate the driving experience to low level flying. It is not as economical as our 1994 SAAB 9000 turbo estate, but we average around 10 litres/100K at the moment. That can blow out if you get stuck into the semi-auto gear box and have a bit of fun without a load. Relax and take it easy - and the fuel economy is fine, but get the V6 is you need more power! Seats are comfortable - as there are plenty of adjustments. We do a lot of long k's in this vehicle and find it most comfortable and easy to drive.
Lots of room, Reasonably flexible space. Great cruiser. Toyota reliability - and we need reliability being self employed!
Can't remove the last row of seats to get more room in the GLi version - basic problem that should not exist on such an expensive people mover. More expensive versions remove the problem - but is should not exist! Period! Not comfortable with the instruments being so far from the drivers view - messes a bit with the visually impaired (us glasses users)


Good for families with young children.

We have a 2007 GLX V6 and bought it as a second hand at a Toyota dealer with having 96K on the odometer at the time of purchase. We have had this vehicle now for 1 year and are quite happy with it. Toyota generally has a good build quality and it shows on this vehicle. Sound proofing and suspension are good as well as the list of safety features and number of storage, which is quite handy.

Would recommend this vehicle for families with 3 kids or more who generally still use child/booster seats - very flexible. Mrs currently sits on the 2nd row with our 7 months. Our 2yo and 5yo sit at the back.
2nd & 3rd row space, which is far more superior than any other 7 seaters on the market; Deep boot space on the GLX V6, which accommodates our double pram and still has room for groceries and other stuff; Ability to fold the 3rd row seat flat on the floor, which is ideal for moving furniture and other like; Good configuration of having 2 seats in the 2nd row and having the capability of walking thru to the 3rd row (this is very handy especially when Mrs have to attend to the kids quickly at the back); Good bright dash to display speedometer; Front & rear parking sensors are a bonus for this long vehicle; Very good adjustable driving lights for night time.
Premium unleaded (95 RON) which is expensive; Beige cloth seat fabrics and carpet, which is not ideal for young families - would have prefered darker colours to hide those stains; No trip computer to display kms to go til empty; Spare wheel is not a full size alloy.

1 comment
I have a 2012 model. The Tarago is not long, it is horter than the old Falcon wagon. The third row is not suitable for adults above average height and weight, tall people might not like the driver's seat either. Truly a vehicle for the slim folk in Japan.The GLXs power drivers seat is great. Second row chairs can be pushed way back so an adult can use the footrest properly. Could do with more legroom when all rows are in use, and a bit of extra room in the luggage area would help. But the vehicle would have to be longer (500mm) to accommodate those sorts of changes. Over to you Mr Toyoda.

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Questions & Answers

I have a 2010 model with 215/55R17 tyres(as designed- low profile). Has anyone tried a a more standard size style to provide more width on the wall. Having issues with puncturing with collecting traffic islands / gutters.
No answers

I have 2015 4cyl GLX model, bought new in Feb. It is very comfortable and easy to drive. One annoying problem is sometimes when I take the foot off the accelerator to turn a corner when I need to depress the accelerator again nothing happens. I have to depress the accelerator twice to get power. Does any other Tarago owners have this problem?
6 answers
Actually it also happened to my wife's Tarago Ultima V6. Felt like the transmission loss traction and went into neutral temporarily... Not a good sign.Was your wife's Tarago able to be fixed?what are the car mileage ? over 300K and an increase of power during the uphill drive?

Hi, I have the 7 seater V6 GLX model (2nd row captain seats) and am wondering whether these two seats can be removed and replaced with the 3 seater bench from the GLI? Babe number 6 is on the way and being so happy with the car we have I'm not keen to update just yet. Is it a simple remove and replace on the existing runners or would it need engineering? Thanks so much in advance.
3 answers
Where is your spare in the GLI because the GLX spare is in boot and seats have to be tilted up to extract the spare.Yes. You can change the seat from two to a three seater. Buy second hand seats from a wrecker, change the seats and have it registered with the RMS .It would fit but the seat belts on the bench seat for the outer 2 sides will not have a seat belts! As the captain chairs have the belts built into the seat the beach seat outer belts are built into the pillar.

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