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Does the recently enhanced SRX-grade Hilux present itself as the pick of the range?

The release of the new Hilux in 2016 was a highly anticipated event, revealing a much-improved bakkie over its dated predecessor. It was immediately evident that Toyota had managed to develop a product that had been enhanced in every way. In our first test of the Hilux, a comparison with the Ford Ranger, we concluded by stating, “We’re particularly interested to find out whether other engine options, including the new 2,4-litre turbodiesel, would make the grade.” And that’s what we’re here to do with the recently tweaked 2,4 GD-6 SRX, specified in this guise with Toyota’s all-wheel-drive system, with low-range controlled via a knob on the facia.

SRX specification means that the exterior, which now features the wide-body configuration from top-spec Hilux models that’s 55 mm broader than before, makes do with black-plastic door handles, blanked-out bits where foglamps normally go, and unpainted side-mirrors, but it does feature Raider-shared 17-inch alloy wheels in place of the previous version’s steel items. Move to the interior, and the touchscreen infotainment system from the Raider model has been replaced with a more basic version that lacks a touch function, but still boasts USB, aux-in, CD and Bluetooth functionality. To manage these features, there are satellite buttons on the urethane steering wheel.

The lower specification level means the interior doesn’t offer the lashings of chrome trim that differentiate higher-rung versions. However, the cloth seats are very comfortable and support your body where necessary, while perceived build quality is impressive. When you start the engine and pull away, the 2,4-litre unit feels similar to the 2,8-litre in terms of response and refinement. Up the pace, however, and the differences in power between the 2,4 and 2,8 are soon apparent. The former offers enough punch to accelerate in sixth gear from 110 km/h, but you'll need fourth if speedy overtaking is called for. If you plan to do heavy towing, the 2,8 GD-6 is still the Hilux to go for, as evidenced by the results of our performance testing.

On our test strip, the Hilux recorded a 0-100 km/h acceleration time of 13,16 seconds, 2,32 slower than the 2,8 GD-6. In terms of in-gear times, the 2,4 required 8,34 seconds (versus 6,68) to get from 100 to 120 km/h in fifth gear. The 80-100 km/h dash in third gear took 3,56 seconds versus 4,50 for the 2,4 GD-6.

Between the front seats, there are eco and power buttons, the latter of which sharpens the throttle response. The sensitivity is slightly too heightened for city use, but on the open road it does make the Hilux feel sprightlier. That high sixth gear pays dividends in terms of fuel economy, though. On our mixed-conditions 100 km fuel route, the SRX consumed a very respectable 7,8 L/100 km; incidentally, the 2,8 also gulped 7,8 litres…

Although the red line starts at 4 400 r/min, there is no need to push the powertrain past 4 000 r/min, as performance tapers off sharply. Keep the engine between 2 000 and 3 500 r/min, and it delivers its best work. The controls are light and direct, be it the short-throw gearbox or the steering. Compared with the Ranger, the Hilux feels lighter (which it is) and nimbler, a boon on traffic-congested roads.

The emergency-braking result was the same as the 2,8’s; the Hilux posted an average of 3,30 seconds, far off the times we record for SUVs at this price point. Where the argument for this particular Hilux wanes slightly is its lack of stability control and that it offers just three airbags. The Ranger XL-Plus adds a traction-control system, a suite of additional safety systems, plus three more airbags. Oddly, Ford charges extra for Bluetooth on this model, a feature that should be standard.
Steel rims, black door handles and cloth seats. Not exactly the picture of the new Hilux etched into our minds after an extensive launch campaign by Toyota. But there we were at the Mkuze airfield in Mozambique, taking in a fleet of workmanlike SRX double-cab models featuring the new 2,4-litre GD range of engines. This fleet of bakkies looked more suited to the farming community than a road trip to an exotic location, but time behind the wheel in a variety of challenging driving scenarios proved that this hard-working Hilux had a good deal more class than we'd expected.

Interior
The interior is now a familiar sight with the tablet-like touch-screen infotainment system taking centre stage. Gone are the metallic-effect trim inserts on the door panels and the seats, although comfier than the leather pews in the top-of-the-range model we recently sampled, are now cloth covered. The steering wheel only offers satellite buttons for the radio (no additional functionality or cruise control) but it still has (limited) reach and rake adjustment. Climate control is now manual and it struggled slightly in the hot and humid Mozambique climate where the recirculation mode was needed to cool down sufficiently. All in all, though, opting for SRX specification doesn't represent too much of a sacrifice in terms of comforts.

That 2,4-litre engine
The all-new 2,4 turbodiesel engine is offered in two states of tune with the higher output version in our test unit delivering 110 kW, and more importantly, 400 N.m of torque - 57 N.m up on the old 3,0 D-4D unit. From start-up it's clear that this unit is surprisingly refined with little diesel clatter audible in the cabin during idle or on the move.

On the road-bound section of our launch the engine provided good shove between 1 500–2 000 r/min and doesn't feel that far removed from the 2,8-litre. The larger unit shows its advantage at higher engine speeds needed for overtaking, but thankfully the six-speed gearbox is slick and positive in its action, making it easy to keep the smaller engine in the meat of the rev range. In general, the 2,4-litre offers more than enough performance for most needs and has surfeit capability for any commercial application. The on-board fuel consumption figure for the trip to the border was 7,6 L/100 km which was impressive considering all the slow-moving trucks we had to overtake en route.

The ride on tar and sand
The new Hilux's ride on tarred surfaces is a marked improvement over that of the previous model but still firmer than that of most rivals, especially over bumpy sections. Once we crossed the Mozambique border and tar made way for sandy tracks, the Hilux was in its element. Select four-wheel drive on the rotary drivetrain setting dial, steer a steady course and the Hilux makes short work of sandy terrain – even with standard tyre pressures. Out of interest I changed back to rear-wheel drive and was surprised how capable the Hilux was in sand, as long as the momentum was kept up. A forced stop to let approaching vehicles past meant a return to four-wheel drive to prevent embarrassment.

Summary
Although most leisure buyers will likely opt for the 2,8-litre model in Raider specification, it has to be said that the 2,4-litre SRX range offers enough muscle and capability for both commercial and leisure applications, with a substantial saving to boot. And while it may not be as sharply dressed as its higher-end siblings, SRX buyers can at least take solace in the fact that steel wheels are back in style…

Manufacturer Specifications

Standard - standard Optional - optional
  • Cloth upholstery: Standard
  • Seats quantity: 2
  • Air conditioning: Standard
  • Cup bottle holders: Standard
  • Antilock braking system (ABS): Standard
  • Electronic brake distribution (EBD): Standard
  • Brake assist (BAS/EBA): Standard
  • Stability control: Standard
  • Driver airbag: Standard
  • Front passenger airbag: Standard
  • Driver knee airbag: Standard
  • Airbag quantity: 3
  • Automatic drive away locking: Standard
  • Approach home safe lighting time delay park headlights: Standard
  • Hillstart assist hillholder: Standard
  • Alloy wheelsrims: Standard
  • Driving mode switch eg sport comfort: std, Eco, Sport
  • Power steering: Standard
  • Multifunction steering wheel controls: Standard
  • On board computer multi information display: Standard
  • Bluetooth connectivity: Standard
  • CD player: Standard
  • USB port: Standard
  • Powersocket 12V: Standard
  • Central locking: remote
  • Remote central locking: Standard
  • Electric windows: Standard
  • Electric adjust mirrors: Standard
  • Light sensor auto on off lights: Standard
  • Frontfog lamps lights: Standard
  • Highlevel 3rd brakelight: Standard
  • Fuel Type: diesel
  • Fuel range average: n/a km
  • Driven wheels: all
  • Driven wheels quantity: 4
  • All wheel drive: part-time
  • Gearratios quantity: 6
  • Lowrange: Standard
  • Gearshift: manual
  • Transmission type: manual
  • Diff lock: Standard
  • Front tyres: 265/65 R17
  • Reartyres: 265/65 R17
  • Spare wheel size full: Standard
  • Length: 5330 mm
  • Width excl mirrors incl mirrors: 1855 mm
  • Height: 1795 mm
  • Wheel base: 3085 mm
  • Ground clearance minimum maximum: 269 mm
  • Turning circle wheels body: 12.8 m
  • Unladen/tare/kerb weight: 2000 kg
  • Gross weight (GVM): 2870 kg
  • Towing capacity - unbraked: 750
  • Towing capacity - braked: 3200
  • Fuel tank capacity (incl reserve): 80l
  • Fuel consumption average: n/a l/100km
  • CO2 emissions average: n/ag/km
  • Emission control phase Euro EU level: EU 2
  • Power maximum: 110 kW
  • Power maximum total: 110 kW
  • Power peak revs: 3400 r/min
  • Power to weight ratio: 55.0 kW/ton
  • Torque maximum: 400 Nm
  • Torque peak revs: 1600-2000 r/min
  • Torque maximum total: 400 Nm
  • Torque to weight ratio: 200 Nm/ton
  • Acceleration 0-100 kmh: 13.2s
  • Maximum top speed: 170 km/h
  • Engine position/ location: front
  • Engine capacity: 2393 cc
  • Engine size: 2.4l
  • enginedetailshort: 2.4TD
  • Engine + detail: 2.4 turbo diesel
  • Cylinder layout: inline
  • Cylinders: 4
  • Cylinder layout + quantity: i4
  • Valves quantity: 0
  • Turbocharger: Standard
  • Warranty time (years): 3
  • Warranty distance (km): 100000 km
  • Service plan: Standard
  • Service plan time (years): 9 services
  • Service plan time (distance): 90000 km
  • Service interval (distance): 10000 km
  • Service interval (time): 1
  • Brand: Toyota
  • Status: c
  • Segment: LCV
  • MMcode: 60039191
  • MMVariant: HILUX 2.4 GD-6 SRX 4X4 P/U S/C
  • Introdate: 2019-06-24
  • DuoportarecordID: ToyoHilu4Fp24

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Toyota Hilux 2.4 GD-6 SRX 4X4 Single Cab for sale in Alberton from one of Carmag.co.za's apporoved car dealerships
Used Hilux 2.4 GD-6 SRX 4X4 Single Cab availbale from the following auto dealer:
CMH Toyota Alberton used car dealership located in: Alberton, Gauteng, South Africa

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