Toyota Hilux Is Still King Of Pickups In Malaysia

Toyota’s Hilux is one of the toughest pickups on the planet. Many readers may remember its starring role in a BBC Top Gear program over a decade ago when its reliability and durability was put to the ultimate test. It was driven into a wall, crashed into a tree, set on fire, drowned in the ocean, hit with a wrecking ball and then dropped from a skyscraper’s rooftop. It survived all of this punishment and its engine even started after every encounter.

The revised Hilux gets a snazzier, sedan-like interior

Whether the majority of Hilux buyers in Malaysia realize this incredible feat or not, and whether that was a factor in their purchase of the vehicle, Toyota’s rugged pickup helped put the brand in the No 1 sales spot with some 27,447 units delivered. Despite the higher sales figure, the Hilux’s market share fell from 47.1% to 46.8% last year in 2022.

Meanwhile, the Mitsubishi Triton, with 9,812 units, finished in second position, joining the Hilux on the podium. In what is probably its final full year of sales before a new 3rd generation model replaces the outgoing one, the Mitsubishi pick-up truck saw sales increase by 1.19% and registered a market share of 16.7% (down 0.1% from 2022).

While the Triton has a good reputation in the marketplace, the Hilux blows every other rival—including the Isuzu D-Max—out of the water with a rugged, no-nonsense angular design, strong powertrains and unparalleled off-road handling. 

A facelifted version of the 2020 model was progressively introduced into countries in South-east Asia from 2021 with a bolder 3-dimensional grille, Bi-LED headlights and rear LED taillights, 18-inch alloy wheels, and an optional bedliner for the rear cargo space. 

Inside, the Hilux gets a new sportier meter design, better visibility, illuminated door trim and a revised smart entry system.

Hilux comes with two powertrain choices

The Hilux comes with two powertrain choices, either the entry-level 2.4-litre, or a 2.8-litre. The 2.4-litre 4-cylinder turbodiesel pumps out 150 hp and 400 Nm of torque mated to a 6-speed automatic gearbox. In contrast the 2.8-litre turbodiesel generates 201hp and 420Nm of torque for the 6-speed manual transmission version. 

This pickup also comes with a rear differential lock, downhill assist control, a drive mode switch, active traction control and improved suspension system to reduce fatigue on long journeys.

CARLIST THOUGHTS

In the countries where it is sold, including Malaysia, the Hilux leads in sales thanks to its proven durability, powertrains, practicality and cost performance. Available in seven color variations, prices for the entry-level Hilux Single Cab 2.4MT 4X4 start from RM103,880 ranging up to the flagship Hilux 2.8 GR-S AT 4X4 for RM169,080.

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