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Looks tough, performs well, but HiLux Rogue shows its age when compared with Ranger

28 Oct 2022

TOYOTA has slipped its new HiLux Rogue into the Australian market with little fanfare this month, the dual-cab utility bringing with it significant equipment upgrades over the outgoing version, for the same list price of $70,200 plus on-road costs.


That means the Rogue is priced $3010 higher than its nearest four-cylinder competitor, the Ford Ranger Wildtrak (from $67,190 + ORC), which in many ways shows how dated the eighth-generation HiLux now is, having first debuted back in 2015. But more on that in a little while…


Sporting what Toyota calls “significant mechanical upgrades”, the upgraded HiLux Rogue features revised brakes, suspension, and body enhancements. Changes to the Rogue’s suspension centre around a front and rear track increase of approximately 140mm, while ride height has also been increased by approximately 20mm.


Toyota says its engineers upgraded the HiLux’s suspension by extending the length of the front suspension arm and front stabiliser bar while also adjusting the front damper angle to improve efficiency.


The rear axle of the HiLux Rogue has also been lengthened, and as such, the rear dampers have been moved outward to enhance stability and damping performance. Keen eyes will spot the rear-end’s pronounced positive camber (when unladen).


Further, and for the first time, the model has a rear stabiliser bar installed which Toyota says will improve roll rigidity by 20 per cent and enhance steering feel when cornering and changing lanes.


Braking improvements see the HiLux Rogue equipped with rear ventilated disc brakes to replace the existing drum setup, helping to improve stopping power.


Like other HiLux dual-cab four-wheel drive variants, the Rogue remains powered by Toyota’s 2.8-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine producing 150kW/500Nm (against 154kW/500Nm for the twin-turbocharged Ranger). It is available exclusively with a six-speed automatic transmission.


The upgraded Rogue is distinguished by its wide track, bolstered fenders and prominent wheelarch extensions front and rear. The variant rides exclusively on 18-inch alloy wheels with a darkened finish shod with highway-biased Dunlop Grandtrek PT22 tyres in a 265/60 profile.


Other features, carried over from the model’s predecessor, include a locally developed motorised roller cover, stylish resin sports bar and a tub lined with marine-grade carpet.


Standard equipment highlights include heated front seats with perforated leather accented upholstery (as per that found on SR5 Premium), panoramic view monitor (360-degree camera system), and an integrated trailer wiring harness and tow pack.


The 2023 Toyota HiLux Rogue arrives as standard with a nine-speaker JBL premium audio system and is available in nine exterior colours: Oxide Bronze (pictured), Glacier White, Frosted White, Silver Sky, Graphite, Eclipse Black, Nebula Blue, Saturn Blue, and Feverish Red.

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