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TOYOTA HILUX ROGUE: TESTED AND PRICES

Time:2018-06-20 11:48Turbochargers information Click:

toyota Hilux Pric Tested Rogue

A few years ago, the Toyota HiLux SR5 was the most expensive one-tonner you could buy, at about $55,000. That was when a ute was a tool, not a status symbol.

Today, like Ford, HSV, Mercedes and VW, Toyota has pushed pricing into the $60,000 zone for buyers who want the brightest, shiniest truck.

In fairness, one of the new top-spec HiLux variants, Rugged X (from $61,690 plus on-roads, see video below) also adds locally designed and fitted off-road accessories such as a snorkel, LED driving lights, bullbar, rock sliders, towbar and bashplates, to complement the standard SR5’s go-anywhere capability, so at the price it looks like a reasonable deal.

HiLux Rogue: Pitched at the “urban adventurer customer”

HiLux Rogue: Pitched at the “urban adventurer customer”Source:Supplied

The other — HiLux Rogue, which we’re in today — is a cosmetic exercise pitched at the “urban adventurer customer.” Mechanicals and running gear are 100 per cent bog stock SR5. Rogue also costs $61,690 plus on-roads.

Toyota regularly advertises the standard SR5 at $52,990 drive away. Bling is cheap to make, so the difference is nearly all profit.

VALUE

What do you get if you’ve gone Rogue? Er, well, there’s a bespoke grille and bumper that panders to our new penchant for American-style hulking, bully boy, front end styling.

The rear bumper has a larger step, and a full towbar package is standard. The tub gets marine carpet liner, colour-matched hard tonneau cover with a light but no 12V outlets.

A heavy duty black sports bar has multiple tie down points and a camera is fitted in the black tailgate handle.

Rogue trayed: Tub gets liner, hard tonneau and tailgate houses reverse camera

Rogue trayed: Tub gets liner, hard tonneau and tailgate houses reverse cameraSource:Supplied

It sure looks the biz compared with your ho-hum SR5, especially in white with black trim and beautiful dark grey 18-inch alloys. Rogue badges may or may not make you more interesting to the opposite sex. “I drive a Rogue.” It’s very Austin Powers, don’t you think?

Inside is SR5 apart from the back to black treatment, which extends to the rooflining, plastics, dash trim and leather-faced, heated seats. Instruments have white highlighting and orange needles. You also get a set of floor mats.

COMFORT

When this HiLux was launched in 2015, the suspension was too stiff, even accounting for its load-carrying brief, so the ride was punishing on bumpy roads, with constant jostling, shaking and general discomfort.

The Rogue has the same suspension and 265/60/18 tyre package as the SR5 but it feels more compliant, so the ride is more settled and comfortable.

Back to black: Tall drivers might find HiLux cramped but rear legroom is good

Back to black: Tall drivers might find HiLux cramped but rear legroom is goodSource:Supplied

Toyota may have made running changes to the suspension rates, or perhaps the Rogue’s extra 100kg kerb weight — which comes off the maximum payload capacity, now down to 825kg — has taken the edge off the springs’ lack of initial compliance.

A broad, generously padded driver’s seat is good for a long day but the shallow footwell, low seating position and insufficient reach adjustment for the wheel mean that long-legged drivers can be quite cramped. Rear legroom is fine.

SAFETY

You get seven airbags and a camera. That’s it. There is not one piece of driver assist safety technology (autonomous emergency braking, blind spot monitoring etc) in this $60,000-plus vehicle. Unbelievable! as the Donald would say. Yet it still scores five stars from ANCAP. Crazy.

DRIVING

The HiLux’s 130kW 2.8-litre turbo diesel is matched with six-speed automatic/part-time, dual-range 4WD as standard in Rogue.

It isn’t the punchiest engine in ute world but it’s a lovely thing to drive, with the ability to run all day, in any situation, ticking over at minimal revs with just a faint oiler grumble as soothing background noise.

Peak torque of 450Nm kicks in at 1600rpm, and when muscle is required, the transmission taps it quickly and smoothly, though under acceleration the engine vibration is quite pronounced.

Expect 10L-12L/100km in town and 6L-7L on the highway. Maximum towing capacity is as per SR5 auto: 3200kg.

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