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Hilux GR Sport: Live the Spirit of Gazoo Racing in flash bakkie

  • Limited numbers – get in quick with a deposit
  • Really classy machine as the Hilux lives on
  • Auto only – but performance and 4×4 included
2019 TOYOTA GR. Image: Toyota SA

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa – Toyota has created a limited-edition Hilux bakkie badged as the Hilux GR Sport and regarded by the automaker as the next chapter in Toyota’s GR product story. Only 600 will be assembled, so book early…

It certainly looks the part and is the second tier in the GR-product pyramid with suspension upgrades and cosmetic enhancements.

Gazoo Racing is Toyota’s unified motorsport arm and competes in a number of global motorsport disciplines such as the World Endurance Challenge, World Rally championship, Nascar and serious off-road racing – including the annual ‘Dakar’ rally now run, of course, in South America.

2019 TOYOTA GR. Image: Toyota SA

”Dakar and Hilux have,”the automaker says, ”become synonymous thanks to the victory of Nasser Al Attiah in the South African-assembled Toyota Gazoo Racing SA Hilux in this year’s instalment of the car-killing event.”

PAYLOAD MAINTAINED

At the heart of the model, Toyota SA says, are a Gazoo Racing uprated and tuned suspension – the shock-absorbers changed to a monotube design with revised damping and working in conjunction with higher front spring rates to provide  a sportier ride without sacrificing ride comfort.

The rear leaf-spring rates are unaltered to maintain the existing payload the Toyota explained that the GR brief focused on superior off-road handling, off-road body control, and sharper on-road steering.

2019 TOYOTA GR. Image: Toyota SA

The exterior differs from its sisters under the Gazoo Racing branding and the now signature red/white/black decals. The GR Sport is offered in three colours; White, Red or Black – matching that of the Gazoo Racing livery. The Corner thinks the black version looks great…

BIGGER ‘DAKAR’ GRILLE

A larger-than-usual, gloss black, grille has Dakar-style badging  The vertical foul-weather lights’ garnish involves a red or white outline (depends on body colour) but each other model has a black bonnet and roof. Black accents extend to the external mirrors, GR-branded tubular side steps, over-fenders and GR-Sport specific 17” alloy wheel rims shod with 265/65 rubber.

The GR Sport also has a unique interior thanks to red accents and black leather with contrasting red stitching, and GR logos on the head restraints and mats. A GR-branded push-start button fires up the engine and (see image) each unit will have a production number on the centre console.

READ MORE Toyota features on Carman’s Corner

Shiny black has been applied to the facia and door trim panels and a vivid red accent line bisects the fascia.

The infotainment system includes a 20cm display flush to the facia’s surface and including key-function short-cut buttons, touchscreen, satnav,  DVD, USB, Bluetooth and Aux interfaces. Most of it can be operated from a panel on the steering-wheel and the screen will show what’s behind when reverse gear is selected.

2019 TOYOTA GR. Image: Toyota SA

The white-faced dials and orange needles include a 10.5cm multi-display for audio, compass, navigation prompts, trip data and fuel consumption.

The bonnet is home to a 2.8 GD-6 turbodiesel engine capable of 130kW/450 Nm linked to a six-speed auto transmission (no manual available) with manual and sport modes anda  ”switch-on-the-fly” all-wheel drive transaxle.

2019 TOYOTA GR. Image: Toyota SA

The driver can choose Power or Eco modes by adapting throttle response and transmission shift logic.

…AND SO TO THE PRICE

Toyota Hilux 2.8 GD-6 4×4 GR Sport 6a/t – R 707 400

…AND WARRANTY

The Hilux GR Sport comes with a three-year or 100 000km warranty, a nine-services or 90 000km service plan which can be extended on purchase.

2019 TOYOTA GR. Image: Toyota SA

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