First Drive: 2020 Toyota Hilux
The Toyota Hilux is perhaps one of the well-known nameplates in South Africa, it has been in the market for over 51 years and has dominated the LCV market. After driving the Legend 50 from Zimbabwe to Botswana last year, we knew that the updated Legend had a lot to live up to and it certainly couldn’t disappoint.
A few days after the virtual launch a small group of media made our way to Gerotek testing facility to spend a few hours behind the wheel of the Hilux Legend RS, the only model available on the day. A short briefing and we started to make our way through the obstacle courses to put the Hilux through its paces and get some hands-on experience.
On the exterior, there are some noticeable changes to the front, as it features new slim-line headlamps, with an all-new front-grille and bumper design. This new styling gives the Hilux a much more aggressive and tougher appearance than the Legend 50. On the outside features a trapezoidal grille which is outlined in black, it is integrated with the front bumper as well as a bonnet protector as well as a skid plate, it also features dark-plated headlamp inserts and a centred chrome inlay. The optional ‘RS’ accessory package is only available on the Legend-grade models, this includes a motorised roller shutter, graphite-coloured sportsbar, rubberised bedliner, assisted tailgate with central-locking function, LED lighting in the bin and a dust-defense kit. These are really cool and I would definitely recommend this optional RS package, it adds further practicality and convenience to the Hilux.
The new Hilux range will be available in nine exterior colours, this will include the new Oxide Bronze and Pearl White, which is a first for Hilux. The Attitude Black colour will be exclusively available on the 2.8 GD-6 4x4 Legend. The Oxide Bronze certainly looks beautiful and gives a nice contrast against the black trimmings on the Legend RS.
When it comes to power and performance, the new Hilux has seen some significant changes as the 2.8 GD-6 engine (Auto) will now be delivering 150kW and 500Nm. Toyota has also improved the fuel economy; this was done by adopting a larger turbocharger and a new common-rail injection system. The Legend 4x4 as the six-speed automatic transmission allows improved acceleration, especially while towing, with a towing capacity of 3,5 Tons. The Hilux did feel exceptionally comfortable, even when we headed off-road. This is thanks to new spring rates, shock absorbers, and suspension bushes, delivering more agile handling and improving ride comfort.
The cabin of the Legend variant receives particular attention, it comes with a unique accent treatment to the instrument cluster, interior trim panels, switchgear, and gear lever. Cool, blue door illumination complements the perforated leather upholstery and black roof lining. The Legend models will feature an all-new 8-inch infotainment system that comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, allowing passengers to mirror applications off their mobile phones. Google Maps and Waze will also be included, and passengers will be able to access their music libraries and streaming accounts via Apple Music, JOOX, Spotify, and SoundCloud. Other features include wireless calling which is done via Bluetooth with a USB input for additional media options. All Hilux models will be equipped with the latest Toyota Connect telematics system, this comes with an in-car Wi-Fi hotspot as well as a complimentary 15Gb data.
The Legend-grade range comes with a few additional features an Electrochromatic rearview mirror. The Double-cab 4x4 models also have leather interior trim, electrically adjustable front seats, a JBL 9-speaker audio system with dash-mounted speakers, keyless entry, and push-button start. The JBL has to be my favourite now offering crisp and clear audio within the bakkie. The Toyota Safety Sense (TSS, a Pre-collision system, Lane Departure Alert, and Adaptive Cruise Control) will now be standard on Legend 4x4 models.
All Hilux models will come with a 3-year/100 000 km warranty and a 9-services/90 000 km service plan.
Toyota Hilux Double Cab 2.8 GD-6 4X4 Legend 6AT R 765,600