While performance car enthusiasts might be all about peak kilowatt figures, bakkie fanatics tend to look to the torque column first. Yes, for many pickup drivers, maximum twisting force is crucial when it comes tasks such as towing, hauling heavy loads and off-roading.
So, we decided to take a look at exactly which double-cab bakkies currently on South Africa’s new vehicle market produce the most torque. All, rather unsurprisingly, are diesel-powered…
1=. Ford Ranger 3,2 TDCi
Peak torque: 470 N.m
This 147 kW 3,2-litre five-cylinder turbodiesel mill powers as many as seven Ranger variants, and is mated to either a six-speed manual gearbox or an automatic with the same number of ratios. Regardless of transmission, though, the peak figure of 470 N.m is on tap from 1 500 to 2 750 r/min. Plenty of pulling power, then…
1=. Mazda BT-50 3,2 TDi
Peak torque: 470 N.m
Thanks to Mazda’s now-ended marriage to the Blue Oval, the BT-50 can also be had with Ford’s burly five-pot. Peak torque is the same 470 N.m, although in this application the maximum figure is available over a somewhat shorter rev-range (from 1 750 to 2 500 r/min, to be exact).
3. Toyota Hilux 2,8 GD-6 (auto)
Peak torque: 450 N.m
If it’s torque you’re after, best you skip the 4,0-litre V6 petrol mill (175 kW/376 N.m) that powers the range-topping Hilux and opt for the 2,8-litre turbodiesel instead. Yes, this 130 kW four-cylinder unit makes 450 N.m from 1 600 to 2 400 r/min – when mated to the six-speed automatic transmission, that is. With a manual gearbox fitted, torque is restricted to 420 N.m (albeit across a wider rev-range: 1 400 to 2 600 r/min).
4. Toyota Land Cruiser 79 4,5D-4D LX V8
Peak torque: 430 N.m
Easily the largest engine on this list (and by far the most expensive bakkie here, too), the 4,5-litre V8 turbodiesel in the Land Cruiser 79 is worth 151 kW and 430 N.m. The latter figure is available from 1 200 to 3 200 r/min, which helps to make this workhorse particularly capable off the beaten path.
5. Volkswagen Amarok 2.0 BiTDI
Peak torque: 420 N.m
The Amarok only just squeezes onto this list, but its mere presence is impressive considering the size of its engine. Yes, the range-topping 2,0-litre BiTDI unit churns out 132 kW and 420 N.m when mated to the brand’s eight-speed automatic ‘box, with peak twisting force on tap at 1 750 r/min (in manual models, torque maxes out at 400 N.m, from 1 500 to 2 250 r/min). But if/when the 3,0-litre V6 model arrives with the facelift in 2017 – with peak torque of up to 550 N.m – the Amarok will shoot to the very top of this list…
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