JOHANNESBURG - When Toyota introduced its new-generation semi-bonnet Quantum earlier this year, the 16-seat Ses’Fikile minibus taxi from the previous line-up was relaunched as a Hiace, and now Toyota South Africa is doing the same with the 14-seat version.
Sold in GL guise only, the Hiace 14-seater is more luxurious than the Ses’Fikile and it’s priced at R571 900, which is a R118 000 premium over the aforementioned commuter, but still a R63 000 saving over the newer-generation Quantum 14-seater.
An additional advantage is that unlike the new Quantum, the Hiace does not require a code 10 driver’s licence to operate.
The Hiace 14-seater is only available with Toyota’s familiar 2.5-litre turbodiesel engine, which produces 75kW and 260Nm. It drives the rear wheels through a five-speed manual gearbox.
As for amenities, the GL has the basics covered, but doesn’t pack anything extravagant. Standard features include air conditioning, a six-speaker audio system with Bluetooth connectivity, front electric windows, and a total of 12 cup holders. Safety comes in the form of dual front airbags and ABS brakes.