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New Toyota Hilux GR-Sport III – What you get for R1 million

The Toyota Hilux is getting its most exciting model yet with the new GR-Sport III, which cranks up the legendary 4×4’s capabilities to 11.

This is not the first time South Africa has gotten the GR-Sport moniker on its favourite bakkie, as previous iterations were launched in 2019 and 2022, respectively, but this latest model is more on par with units that have been afforded to other countries like Australia and the United Kingdom.

Locally, the 2022 Hilux GR-Sport was limited to a mostly cosmetic overhaul with a few tweaks to the suspension system and a slightly higher power output. In comparison, the GR-Sport III features a much broader range of enhancements intended to make it Toyota’s most intense bakkie to date.

Of course, none of this comes cheap, as the newcomer retails for R999,000making it the third-most expensive Hilux in the country behind the flagship Legend RS and its mild-hybrid counterpart.

What you get

In South Africa, the dynamic Hilux GR-Sport III is saddled with the same uprated 2.8-litre turbocharged diesel engine as the previous model, giving it a power cap of 165kW and 550Nm.

This is enough to get the double-cab’s 0-100km/h acceleration time down to just under 10 seconds, as well as give it a top speed of 175km/h.

The racing-branded Toyota also features a selectable 4×4 system and a six-speed automatic gearbox, and reports a decent average fuel consumption of 8.7l/100km.

Looking at its more practical elements, the newcomer shares the same platform as the standard models with a wheelbase of 3,085mm, but it’s more muscular body means it is 120mm wider.

Additionally, the front track’s width grew from 1,535mm to 1,675mm, while the rear track has gone from 1,555mm to 1,705mm.

It also boasts an improved approach angle of 30 degrees instead of 29, and the ground clearance now sits at 306mm instead of 286mm.

Functional additions include new monotube dampers that provide better response on rough terrain, side steps, a steel bash plate, a styled sports bar, new brake calipers with a red theme, and 17-inch alloy rims with BF Goodrich Baja Champion all-terrain tyres.

The Toyota also has a unique grille design, and the interior uses a GR-themed black-and-red aesthetic with suede and leather seats.

Other equipment on the GR-Sport includes LED headlights, rain-sensing wipers, keyless entry and start, a leather multifunction steering wheel with paddle shifters, aluminium pedals, adaptive cruise control, dual-zone climate control, a touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, an electronically-adjustable driver’s seat, a nine-speaker JBL stereo, hill-start and hill-descent control, front and rear parking sensors, and a 360-degree camera.

Each purchase of the beefy Toyota comes with a 3-year/100,000km warranty and 9-services/90,000km service plan.

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