Johannesburg - Toyota South Africa has officially launched its new Dakar edition Hilux.

It’s built to celebrate the local division’s four podiums in the world’s most gruelling rally and although it doesn’t gain any motorsport-inspired performance mods, the aesthetic changes are comprehensive enough to qualify as an actual facelift.

The limited edition is based on the Raider, but gets a raft of exterior and cabin upgrades, including a new front end design that’s also been used on various updated Hilux models abroad.

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Its most prominent feature is a new trapezoidal grille that makes the bakkie resemble the larger Land Cruiser 200. The front bumper has been redesigned too, and the Dakar edition is further distinguished by Dakar logos on the front, side and rear, gloss black side mirrors and door handles as well as a grey rear bumper.

Buyers can choose from four exterior paint colours, and the more adventurous among them will no doubt gravitate towards the new ‘Inferno Orange Metallic’ hue, but white, silver and grey options are also available for those that don’t want to make as big a statement.

The blacked-out theme continues inside, where the normal Raider’s silver trim decor makes way for metallic black trim, while the light grey roof headliner is replaced by black trim. The seats have been upgraded from cloth to leather upholstery and no prizes for guessing the colour...

Talking spec enhancements, the touchscreen infotainment system has been upgraded to include satnav and the Dakar also gets a bespoke instrument cluster featuring white-faced gauges and orange needle pointers, and a unique Dakar graphic now greets you on the LCD multi information display upon start-up.

Standard amenities, as per normal Raider versions, includes automatic climate control, reverse camera, cruise control, seven airbags, ABS, traction control and trailer sway control.

The model line-up is also as per the Raider, meaning that within certain range limits (see below) you get to choose between petrol and diesel, manual and automatic, 4x4 and 4x2 as well as Double Cab and Xtra Cab configurations.

To recap the familiar engine offerings, the 2.8-litre turbodiesel produces 130kW, with maximum torque rated at 420Nm in six-speed manual guise and 450Nm when paired with the six-speed autobox. For those with a private fuel refinery in their backyard Toyota also offers a 4-litre V6 petrol engine option, good for 175kW and 376Nm.

All models are sold with a three-year/100 000km warranty, and diesel buyers get nine free services within 90 000km, while petrol customers receive six services within the 90 000km period.

The Dakar diesel models command premiums of around R19 000 over the equivalent Raider models, while the V6 costs R11 000 extra:

TOYOTA HILUX DAKAR PRICES

Xtra Cab

2.8 GD6 4x2 Dakar manual R470 300
2.8 GD6 4x2 Dakar auto R488 300
2.8 GD6 4x4 Dakar manual R535 600
2.8 GD6 4x4 Dakar auto R553 800

Double Cab

2.8 GD6 4x2 Dakar manual R535 000
2.8 GD6 4x2 Dakar auto R553 400
2.8 GD6 4x4 Dakar manual R601 100
2.8 GD6 4x4 Dakar auto R621 000
4.0 V6 4x4 Dakar auto R662 700

IOL Motoring