If ever there was one tough vehicle that’s capable of withstanding the harshness of any climate, capable of tackling every obstacle in its path, whilst at the same time proving to be ultra-reliable throughout its life, it has to be the Toyota Hilux.
This latest Hilux for 2012 has received a makeover, along with additional new equipment to modernise it. The changes are clear to see from the outset, it has a smart exterior appearance aided by a large chrome front grille with outsized headlights. The SR5 model I drove comes complete with 15” alloys, chrome door mirrors and handles, front fog lamps and side steps. The interior of the new Hilux is far more refined then previous generations, a lot less agricultural and more car-orientated. An innovative piece of equipment onboard my Hilux is Toyota’s touch-screen multimedia system. As well as operating the radio, it enables you to upload your music through a usb, ipod and mp3 player connection, it also has Bluetooth connectivity which allows you stream music from your mobile phone. The colour screen is also a display for the rear view camera, something I found useful in a vehicle of this size.
There’s a choice of two engines powering Toyota’s latest Hilux, a 2.5-litre D-4D diesel and a 3.0-litre D-4D diesel that produces 170hp. Both models utilise a five-speed manual gearbox, whilst the 3.0-litre variant has an optional automatic transmission available. The Hilux is an extremely competent vehicle off-road and comes equipped as standard with a rear differential lock to ensure it can tackle the toughest of conditions. Surprisingly though there’s no traction control fitted as standard, something that I would have envisaged to be present. Prices for the Hilux commence from €24,620 for the 2.5-litre DLX single cab, whilst the double cab I drove costs €33,875.[table “64” not found /]