There’s yet another Toyota HiLux GR Sport available globally, but there’s still no word of another fettled HiLux for the Australian market.
Toyota Europe has revealed its version of the HiLux GR Sport, following the debut of slightly different Thai and Japanese-market models in 2021.
It’ll arrive in European showrooms mid-year, and will be available exclusively as a dual-cab.
In Australia, the range will continue to be topped by the Rogue and Rugged X models.
MORE: 2022 Toyota HiLux GR Sport revealed, no Australian launch confirmed
“Toyota Australia is continually looking at opportunities to expand the Toyota GR range with more exciting models however at this stage, we have no announcements to make,” said a spokesperson for Toyota Australia.
The European-market HiLux GR Sport features upgraded suspension, with new monotube shock absorbers and new, stiffer front coil springs.
Both the shocks and springs are finished in red, and Toyota says the monotube shocks provide better damping performance.
The company says the front suspension upgrades work in tandem with earlier updates to the rear leaf springs and bushes to improve steering effort and angle response and straight-line performance, while also promising “a flat ride and reassuring roll and rear grip feel”.
Toyota also says the new set-up affords the HiLux GR Sport improved ride comfort and less body movement.
The HiLux’s 2.8-litre turbo-diesel four-cylinder engine is unchanged, with 150kW of power and 500Nm of torque and a six-speed automatic transmission.
Payload and braked towing capacity are also unchanged at 1000kg and 3500kg, respectively.
Based on the high-spec HiLux Invincible, there’s keyless entry and start, a nine-speaker JBL sound system, surround-view camera, heated front and rear seats, and an automatic limited-slip differential.
It’s distinguished from the Invincible through a restyled front grille with a horizontal bar containing the Toyota wordmark, as well as larger front fog light surrounds and a black finish for pieces like the side steps and exterior mirrors.
There are 17-inch alloy wheels with a black and machined finish, wrapped in all-terrain tyres, as well as “discreet” GR Sport badging.
Inside, the GR Sport features front sports seats upholstered in black leather and synthetic suede with red perforations and contrast stitching.
GR Sport logos can be found on the seatbacks, starter button and mats, while there are paddle shifters, aluminium pedals and carbon fibre-style trim inserts plus blue ambient lighting in the doors.
Toyota Japan has also confirmed its local GR Sport variant has a revised suspension tune, while the Thai-market Revo GR Sport has a new monotube shock absorber. Both also feature red brake calipers, unlike the European model.
The Thai model is unique in also offering a 4×2 variant, which has been lowered by 23mm.
The Australian HiLux range is currently topped by the Rogue and Rugged X.
The Rogue builds on the SR5 with unique decals, a resin sports bar, black exterior trim, JBL sound system and a surround-view camera.
The Rugged X features a swag of off-road kit, including a bash plate, LED light bar, snorkel, front and rear recovery points and heavy-duty rock rails and front springs.
There’s also a hoopless bull bar and a black sports bar with tie-down points.
Toyota offers a wide range of GR Sport vehicles in the Japanese market, including the Voxy and Noah people movers and the Prius hybrid, but the sub-brand is also expanding beyond its homeland.
Earlier in 2021, Toyota Indonesia released a GR Sport version of the Fortuner SUV with unique wheels and restyled front and rear bumpers.
It also features similar cosmetic tweaks inside to the HiLux GR Sport.
In Australia, only the C-HR and all-new LandCruiser 300 Series have received the GR Sport treatment thus far.
The C-HR gets racier styling and a firmer suspension tune, while the LandCruiser GR Sport takes an entirely different tack with a focus on superior off-road ability.
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