Can the Toyota Hilux GR Sport really take on the Ford Ranger Raptor? What to expect from Toyota Australia’s toughest truck – Car News | Jobs Reply

A toughened-up Hilux in what appears to be the brand’s flagship GR Sport has been tested in disguise in Thailand, setting the countdown clock to the model’s arrival in Australia, where it will go head-to-head with the mighty Ford Ranger Raptor. – Dominance of cabs.

So what do we know so far about Toyota’s entry into the tough UT club, aside from the wide, tough look we can see in these images released by Kurdistan_Automotive_Blog_?

Although the new model will be built in Thailand – where this testing model was snapped – it will be covered in an Australian fingerprint, with Toyota’s Melbourne design and engineering centres, like the special editions that came before it.

That should be enough to differentiate it from the GR-S models we’ve already launched around the world, with special-editions in places like Europe, Thailand and the Philippines.

Toyota's GR Sport is coming soon Toyota’s GR Sport is coming soon

The most likely candidate as a base car for Australia – and the one we really want – is the South African version of the GR-S HiLux, the only version to get the power boost as well as the new equipment so far.

While the HiLux’s engine is unchanged, the South African GR-S’s 2.8-litre turbo-diesel powerplant has been tuned to produce more power and torque, with 165kW and 550Nm on offer.

That’s enough to match the outgoing Ford Ranger Raptor, but will still be overshadowed by the new model, which is fitted with an all-new 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6 petrol EcoBoost powertrain that delivers a massive 292kW and 583Nm.

The new HiLux GR Sport also dials up performance and responsiveness with new monotube shock absorbers and new front springs, with the brand promising that “dedicated suspension enhancements deliver an even more rewarding driving experience, with enhanced control, responsiveness and grip feel.”

Another possibility is the combination of the GR-S ute’s engine upgrades, with the recently announced updates to the Rouge – a 140mm wider track both front and rear, a 20mm boost in ground clearance, and an “overhauled” suspension set-up, lengthening of the front stabilizer bar. Extended and a new rear stabilizer bar – and off-road specific upgrades.

We expect to see the Hilux GR Sport touch down in Australia in 2023, where it will serve as a farewell to the current generation Hilux, which should be replaced in 2024 or 2025.

“To further upgrade the HiLux range, Toyota plans to launch a new top off-road variant, replacing the HiLux Rugged X. Details including launch timing will be announced in due course,” the brand said.

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