Test all limits in the Nissan Navara
Test all limits in the Nissan Navara

More to Hilux than meets the eye

While the hype has been around the latest Toyota Hilux Legend RS derivative (as seen on the cover of our second edition), there is more to the Hilux line-up. Herewith some critical questions about the line-up answered.

Towards the end of 2020, the Toyota Hilux underwent a significant model update, bringing with it sharpened exterior styling, specification upgrades, a rationalised line-up as well as the flagship Legend grade. The SRX grade of old (which catered to customers requiring a blend of utility and comfort) has thus needed to make way for the reimagined Raider nameplate.

Below are some questions that we had regarding the new line-up, and Toyota South Africa provided the answers.

Why rebadge the SRX as a Raider?

The simple answer is that as the ‘bakkie’ market has evolved; customers have come to expect more from even utility-biased derivatives. This in turn meant that the mid-tier SRX grade moved closer-and-closer into traditional Raider territory, somewhat blurring the lines between the mid-grade and top-grade models.

With the introduction of the new high-end Legend model, this provided the opportunity to optimise the model-line up and offer customers more across the board. The ‘new Raider’ offers the perfect blend of style and utility. 

What has changed between SRX and the new Raider?

Visually the new Raider inherits the latest Hilux ‘face’, featuring sculpted headlamps, a larger trapezoidal grille, integrated bumper guard and boomerang-shaped fog-lamp surrounds. Unique to Raider is the chrome treatment of the front grille frame – creating a signature look for the model. The 18-inch wheels have been swapped out for graphite-coloured 17” versions – creating a tough yet stylish look. These are shod with 265-65-R17 tyres.

What about the engine line-up?

Previously the SRX models were paired with the 2.4 GD-6 engine delivering 110kw and 400Nm, while the Raider variants were paired exclusively with the 2.8 GD-6 engine. With the merging of the two grades, we now offer both 2.4 and 2.8 GD-6 Raider models.

Raider models also benefit from the upgraded 1GD engine (2.8 GD-6) producing 150kW and 500 Nm in automatic transmission guise. Manual models boast the same 150kW with 420Nm of torque, while the 2.4 GD-6 outputs remain unchanged.

Is the new Raider just a de-specced version of the old one then?

Quite the contrary. In recognition of the increased dual-purpose usage the new Raider models have received some notable upgrades – particularly on the safety front. Park Distance Control (PDC) has been added while the Airbag tally has increased with the addition of side and curtain airbags (SRX models previously only had driver and passenger airbags).

The fog lamps have been upgraded to LED-spec on 2.4 models, while 2.8 versions now feature full-LED headlamps and taillights. 

A Variable-Flow Control (VFC) power-steering pump has been added – not only does this improve fuel economy, it also provides a more natural driving feel that varies depending on the driving conditions. A high level of assistance is offered at low speeds (parking manoeuvres) while offering lower levels of assistance at higher cruising speeds in order to improve steering feel. In terms of drivetrain, an Auto Limited Slip Diff (LSD) has also been specified for Raider models, aiding traction in low-grip situations.  

The SRX offered a choice of 4×2 or 4×4 and an auto transmission option; is this still the case?

Yes, there are multiple Raider models to choose from depending on body-style. In single and double-cab format, the 2.4 GD-6 is available in both Raised Body (4×2) and 4×4 configuration, with a choice of either a 6-speed manual or 6-speed automatic transmission. The 2.8 GD-6 is available as either Raised Body or 4×4 and coupled with the 6-speed ‘auto’. The Xtra cab variants feature a simplified two model line-up (in-line with market trends).

Are the spec upgrades reserved for the exterior only?

No, as part of the model update the interior too has received some attention. A new ‘floating’ infotainment system with 8-inch screen and rotary-knob control occupies the centre of the facia.

Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality are now embedded within the system. This allows users to mirror applications off their mobile phone – for seamless connectivity. Navigation applications such as Google Maps and Waze are natively included and occupants can also access their music libraries and streaming accounts via apps like Apple Music, JOOX, Spotify and SoundCloud. Wireless telephony is supported via Bluetooth with a USB input for additional media options. An enlarged Multi-Information Display (MID) and new instrument cluster design, also forms part of the package.

These are over and above the existing standard specification items such as; air-conditioning (automatic climate control on 2.8 GD-6 versions), cruise control, reverse camera, air-conditioned glovebox, 12- and 220-volt accessory connectors, tilt-and-telescopic adjustable leather steering wheel and steering switches.

Is Toyota Connect part of the deal?

Yes, all Hilux models are also equipped with the Toyota Connect telematics system which includes an in-car Wi-Fi hotspot and complimentary 15Gb data. Once linked to their profile, customers can manage their vehicle via the MyToyota App. This intuitive app allows on-demand service bookings, vehicle information and history, tracking data as well as Toyota Connect data recharge services and much more – latterly even including the ability to renew your vehicle license online.

What are the warranty and maintenance terms?

All Hilux models come with a 3-year/100 000 km warranty. A 9-services/90 000 km service plan is standard on all models. Customers can also purchase extended service plans and warranty packages via their Toyota dealer. 

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