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Hybrid Toyota Hilux revealed – Everything you need to know

Days after revealing the first official details of the upcoming mild-hybrid (MHEV) Hilux, Toyota has given the public the first sneak peek of the double cab in concept form.

The bakkie performed several successful demo runs at the seventh round of the World Rally Championship (WRC) in Kenya to test how the semi-electric powertrain holds up.

“I’m 100% sure that this type of car will fit in Africa very well because there are still long-distance drives and it’s very difficult to charge electric cars,” said four-time WRC champion and former Toyota world title winner, Juha Kankkunen, who was behind the wheel during the trial laps.

“I have had the pleasure of driving different models for the Toyota brand from full-electric cars to hybrid and hydrogen, and can attest that these models are much faster than standard models.”

Toyota believes that hybrids are perfect for the African market, as well as South Africa, given the scarcity and instability of electricity on the continent and the vast, open spaces where these cars are required to perform.

“In these areas, if it takes time to solve issues such as stable electricity supply, development of charging networks, and securing resources, Mild hybrids are an important option for immediate CO2 reduction,” said Toyota South Africa.

“They do not require new equipment or power supply, can use existing petrol stations as it is, and can reduce COemissions.”

Everything you need to know

In regions such as Australia, the Hilux MHEV will be hitting showrooms in the first half of next year, while in South Africa, the given launch window is before the end of 2024.

Alongside the brand’s familiar 2.8-litre, turbo-diesel GD6 motor and six-speed automatic transmission, the Hilux MHEV is fitted with a 48-volt battery, small electric motor-generator, and “other components.”

The main benefit of this upgrade is an improvement in fuel economy of up to 10%, which for local models mean the partially-electric underpinnings have the potential to bring consumption down from 8.0l/100km to 7.2l/100km.

In addition to delivering fuel savings, the MHEV technology will enable a stop/start system, improved driveability, and reduced noise, vibration, and harshness, according to the automaker.

It will also benefit from “enhanced on and off-road performance, making the Hilux even more appealing for a weekend away or longer-term excursion,” said Sean Hanley, Toyota Australia Vice President of Sales, Marketing, and Franchise Operations.

In MHEV spec, the bakkie won’t sacrifice any of its current capabilities, either, retaining attributes such as its 3.5-tonne braked towing capacity which is of high importance for its customers.

In Australia, only the top-end 4×4 derivatives are equipped with the 48-volt system as standard, whereas it’s an optional extra on the more affordable variant.

For South Africa, no concrete information has yet been announced on the particular MHEV powertrain that will be utilised on locally-built Hilux bakkies, nor on which trims it will be.

The manufacturer hasn’t divulged any specifics on the hybrid Fortuner that is in the pipeline, either, but considering the two body styles share the same chassis, it’s likely that the SUV will be powered by the same drivetrain.

Toyota Hilux MHEV Concept


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