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Chunky styling, upgrades for SA Hilux

With its latest upgrade, released in South Africa this week, Toyota has expanded its Hilux one-ton bakkie range to a mind-boggling 21 models - if you don't believe us, check out the price list at the bottom of the page! - in three body styles, with five engine options, two transmissions and two drivetrains.

Which adds up to one good reason why the Hilux is South Africa's best-selling vehicle - bar none - with around 2500 sold here every month.

New bonnet with a clearly defined centre bulge tops a chunky trapezoidal grille with wide horizontal slats that defines the face of the new Hilux.

South African-built Hiluxes - assembled at the Prospecton plant in Durban - are also exported to 57 countries in Africa and Europe.

You can get a Hilux single cab, either as a workhorse or as a leisure-focused vehicle with two-litre or 2.7-litre petrol power, or a choice of 2.5 D-4D or 3.0 D-4D turbodiesel engines.

The Xtra Cab is now available as a 4x2 2.5 D-4D SRX, 4x2 version, as well as the previous 3.0 D-4D versions in 4x2 and 4x4 configuration.

Toyota SA marketing head Calvyn Hamman explained: "We added the 2.5 D-4D SRX as an entry level model to the Xtra Cab range in answer to customer requests for a workhorse with extra space to store essential equipment or tools securely."

Double-cab options start with the 2.5 D-4D and 3.0 D-4D turbodiesels and go on to the proven 2.7 VVT-i and muscular four-litre V6 petrol engines, mated to either a five-speed manual gearbox or a four-speed auto.

TOUGH-GUY STYLING

The Hilux "mans up" for 2012; a new bonnet with a clearly defined centre bulge tops a chunky trapezoidal grille with wide horizontal slats that defines the face of the new Hilux and is chromed on SRX and Raider models.

New headlights reveal stronger definition between sections and a slight protrusion that actually starts off the body's strong shoulder line.

Below, a new bumper mirrors the shape of the grille, with overfenders on the Raider versions that give it a wider stance and tie in with side character line. Raider and SRX versions get new side mirrors with indicator repeaters and the whole range has new rim/hub cap designs.

New tail-light clusters have clear, squared-off divisions between sections with clear lenses on the indicators and reverse lights; SRX and Raider also get a clear, centrally mounted stoplight on the tailgate.

REVISED INTERIOR

The first thing you see as you settle into the driver's seat is a new, squared-off instrument cluster. The major instruments have gloss black detailing on base models and graduated amber lighting and chrome highlights on high-spec versions.

The centre stack is wider than on previous Hiluxes, with restyled vents and controls, and fancy models get silver detailing that looks good against the new audio system display, which includes the RDS radio function, CD player and newly introduced iPod and USB connecting ports.

The system will display iPod cover art, track listings and song titles, phone numbers via the Bluetooth mobile phone connection as well as radio stations on the colour screen.

The silver detailing carries through to the new, four-spoke steering wheel on Raider models, with remote controls for the audio and Bluetooth systems.

Also new is an overhead console with convenience lights, storage compartment and microphone and speaker system for the hands-free system.

Raider models have new, more luxurious fabric upholstery, on double-cab Raiders, a height adjustable driver's seat and automatic headlights. Three-litre D-4D and four-litre V6 models also have vehicle stability control.

NUTS AND BOLTS

The two-litre petrol engine is a workhorse unit rated for 100kW at 5600rpm and 182Nm at 4000. It's 2.7-litre sibling, however, boasts with twin balance shafts for a smoothly-delivered 118kW at 5200 rpm and 241Nm at 3800.

The all-aluminium four-litre, DOHC, 24-valve V6 kicks out a quoted 175kW at 5200rpm and 376Nm at 3800.

The 2.5 litre, four-cylinder turbodiesel comes in two levels of tune; the vanilla flavour, fitted to the "workhorse models" is good for a claimed 75kW at 3600rpm and 200Nm from 1400-3400rpm, while the Hi-Spec version, free with SRX and Raider models, is rated for 260Nm from 1600-2400rpm.

The three-litre D-4D turbodiesel produces 120 kW at 3400rpm and 343Nm from 1400-3200rpm.

Toyota has also upgraded the tow ratings on several models, ranging between 1510kg on the 2.5 D-4D 4x4 SRX and 2000kg on the three-litre D-4D Raised Body Raider.

All Hiluxes come with a three-year or 100 000km warranty and five-year or 90 000 km service plan.

PRICES

SINGLE CAB

2.0 VVTi - R174 000

2.0 VVTi S - R179 300

2.5 D-4D - R198 100

2.5 D-4D S - R203 200

2.5 D-4D Raised Body SRX - R241 000

2.5 D-4D 4x4 SRX - R289 000

2.7 VVTi Raised Body Raider - R248 300

3.0 D-4D Raised Body Raider - R286 800

3.0 D-4D 4x4 Raider - R334 000

XTRA CAB

2.5 D-4D SRX - R247 300

3.0 D-4D Raised Body Raider - R311 000

3.0 D-4D Raised Body 4x4 Raider - R359 000

DOUBLE CAB

2.5 D-4D Raised Body Raider - R331 000

2.5 D-4D 4x4 SRX - R337 500

2.7 VVTi Raised Body Raider - R312 600

3.0 D-4D Raised Body Raider - R363 800

3.0 D-4D RB Raider a/t - R375 400

3.0 D-4D 4x4 Raider - R412 500

3.0 D-4D 4x4 Raider a/t - R424 100

4.0 V6 Raised Body Raider a/t - R375 500

4.0 V6 4X4 Raider a/t - R445 900

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