Revealed at the fourth Kenshiki Forum 2023 in Brussels, Toyota’s new Hilux Hybrid 48V introduces electrification to the legendary pick-up range for the first time to deliver greater efficiency, improved driving performance and enhanced comfort in both urban and off-road environments.
The ‘Invincible” Hilux has become renowned for its Quality, Durability and Reliability since its launch in Japan in 1968, becoming one of Toyota’s most recognisable and honoured workhorse vehicles. By adding a hybrid 48V system, Toyota strengthens its inclusive multi-technology pathway approach to carbon neutrality and believes that all customers need a variety of affordable and practical options, including for commercial and off-road vehicles.
Exclusively in Double Cab format, the Hilux Hybrid 48V makes a strong impression with its bold three-dimensional grille and front bumper, while inside, a comfortable spacious interior features an extensive equipment list, including a modern infotainment system and the latest Toyota Safety Sense technology.
Toyota’s standard and powerful Euro 6d-compliant, DOHC, 16 valve, 2.8 litre Hilux diesel engine has been strengthened by the addition of a hybrid 48V system specifically designed for the unique demands of Toyota’s dual use pick-up. The engine, which generates 204 DIN hp (150 kW) at 3,400 rpm and 500 Nm of torque between 1,600 and 2,800 rpm, drives a compact motor generator using a belt system, which in turn charges the new 48V lithium battery, which is small enough to be installed under the rear seats to minimise impact on cabin space, and weighs just 7.6 kg. This 48V battery also supplies the vehicle’s 12V system through a new DC/DC converter.
Like Toyota’s full hybrid electric systems, the new battery is charged during deceleration, efficiently regenerating braking energy which would otherwise be lost, whilst also adding additional braking performance. Once charged, the battery sends up to 16 DIN hp (12 kW) of power and 65 Nm of torque through the motor generator to the engine to enhance acceleration, power and efficiency.
The robust motor generator is compact and has been designed to withstand the harsher working environments experienced by commercial vehicles, while the engine has been modified to adapt to the hybrid system. A new two-arm belt tensioner and stronger belt material contribute to the improved drivability and a quieter ride, whilst retaining Hilux’s famous durability.
In common with existing Hilux, Land Cruiser and PROACE family of vehicles, the Hilux Hybrid 48V is compatible with HVO100 diesel, a non-fossil fuel made from 100% renewable sources.
In an urban environment, the additional power of the hybrid 48V system delivers better throttle response and linear acceleration, particularly from a standstill, while regenerative braking creates a more effective and natural deceleration feel. Motor generator power allows for smoother acceleration when negotiating rough terrain too and regenerative braking supports safer downhill manoeuvring, while the engine’s idling speed is reduced from 720 rpm to 600 rpm which increases a driver’s ability to easily control the vehicle.
For the first time on a Hilux, the new Multi-terrain Select system provides even better performance and control by giving the driver the option to adjust vehicle stability control settings according to the specific driving conditions. This can be set to an automatic setting, or the driver can choose one of five pre-set options – Dirt, Sand, Mud, Deep Snow or Rock – calibrated to regulate power and wheelspin to enhance traction and manoeuvrability.
Special attention has been paid to ensuring the Hilux Hybrid 48V possesses formidable water-crossing capabilities. The Hilux Hybrid 48V can drive through water up to 700 mm deep thanks to waterproofing of the 48V battery and DC-DC converter while new anti-slip and strengthening measures on the motor generator pulley and belt ensure optimum performance, even when wet.
The new Hilux Hybrid 48V stands proud at 5,325 mm long, 1,900 mm wide and 1,815 mm high, while it offers practicality as well as rugged style thanks to a load bed length of 1,525 mm. Hybrid efficiency and driving performance enhancements come with no compromise on towing and payload capacity, which remain exceptional at 3,500 kg and 1,000 kg respectively.
Today, the Toyota Hilux is produced in six different countries and is on sale in more than 180 countries and regions around the world since 1968 with 21 million units sold globally. In more than half a century of excellence, the Hilux has proved its invincibility time and again, having conquered the extremes of the North Pole, Icelandic volcanoes and the Antarctic.
Recently it has made its mark on the world of motorsport, earning three wins in the gruelling Dakar Rally in 2019, 2022 and 2023, as well as twice winning the FIA World Rally Raid Championship. It is also the most recent winner of the prestigious 2022/2023 International Pick-up Award (IPUA) for medium-sized pick-up trucks. The IPUA jury recognised the Hilux for its dynamic powertrain, fine handling and legendary Quality, Durability and Reliability, in addition to its ever-increasing appeal in the world’s growing dual-usage, leisure and urban markets.
The new Hilux Hybrid 48V will be arriving at retailers across Europe in mid-2024.