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Toyota records its best year ever in South Africa

Toyota South Africa Motors (TSAM) recorded its best year ever on local soil in 2023, ending the 12 months with a market share of 26.8%, equating to a total of 142,612 registrations across the Toyota, Lexus, and Hino brands.

This is an impressive 10,577 vehicles more than in 2022, a year in which TSAM secured an overall 24.9% market share.

With such a stellar performance in the bag, TSAM has earned the accolade of being the country’s best-selling brand for the 44th consecutive year, sitting on top in the passenger, light-commercial, and medium-commercial vehicle segments.

Not only was the Hilux the automaker’s top volume mover in 2023, but it was also the best-selling vehicle in the country.

The bakkie pulled in a total of 37,382 sales during the past year, with its best month being March in which it attracted 3,920 buyers.

“Against a backdrop of economic doom and gloom, our dealers and staffers have pulled off a remarkable result, ending off the year with a total market penetration of 26.8%, our highest annual share in TSAM history,” said senior vice president for sales and marketing, Leon Theron.

2024 Toyota Prado

What’s in store for 2024

Toyota has at least three exciting product launches in store for 2024, including the next-generation Prado and semi-electric variants of the sought-after Hilux and Fortuner.

The new Prado has grown in size and will have looks more aligned with the flagship Land Cruiser 300, taking styling cues from the original FJ Cruiser with a modern twist.

It has been completely overhauled from the ground up, now sitting on a more refined chassis with better comfort and performance; sporting new engines including the first mild-hybrid system in a Prado; and, importantly, getting all the most cutting-edge technologies that Toyota has in its arsenal including the latest Safety Sense assistance features.

The Prado will make its debut in the second quarter of the year, said TSAM, with its local specifications to be made available around this time.

Mild-hybrid Toyota Hilux concept

Before the end of 2024, the introduction of a mild-hybrid Hilux and Fortuner is also on the cards, which is an important step in the TSAM’s goal of cutting emissions by 40% and having approximately 40% of its passenger car sales consist of new-energy autos by 2026.

Recently revealed in prototype guise, the mild-hybrid powertrain consists of a 48-volt battery, a small electric motor-generator, and “other components” that are combined with the automaker’s revered 2.8-litre, turbocharged diesel motor.

The advantages of this system are an improvement in fuel economy of up to 10% due in part to a standard stop/start system, improved driveability, and reduced noise, vibration, and harshness, said Toyota.

The performance figures of the mild-hybrid configuration have yet to be revealed, however, the manufacturer has promised that the electrified Hilux will sacrifice none of its utilitarian abilities such as its 3.5-tonne braked towing capacity.

2023 Toyota Crown

Finally, the Toyota Crown is also expected to be more readily available over the coming year than it was in the last.

The hybrid crossover was only put forth to handpicked clients in 2023 due to low stock levels, and there were fewer than 20 examples that made their way to our roads between April and December, according to Naamsa’s sales statistics.

While we anticipate that more units of the Crown will arrive in 2024, Toyota has indicated that it still won’t be as easy to come by as the other vehicles in its portfolio in light of persistently high demand in the global arena, coupled with limited supply coming out of Japan.

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