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Rugged by name and nature, Toyota’s X-rated ute climbs higher than any other HiLux

23 Jul 2018

TOYOTA’S Rugged X now sits at the pinnacle of Australia’s best-selling model range bar none.


While combined 4x2 and 4x4 utility sales place HiLux well ahead of the pack, the new X-rated model reflects a response by the market leader to an increasingly competitive class in which it finds itself in the unusual position of having to fight to maintain bragging rights as the car company with the nation’s number-one 4x4 ute.


HiLux is now evenly matched in 4x4 sales terms with Ford’s Ranger, and at the very top end of the market, where buyers are looking for a premium experience, high levels of safety and technology, strong performance, and solid on- and off-road credentials in a dual-cab ute, there are several contenders – from Ford, HSV, VW and Mercedes-Benz, for example – deservedly attracting a lot of attention.


For now at least, Rugged X, as the peak model in a triumvirate that also includes the Rogue and a lower-spec Rugged variant, shows that Toyota is at least digging in to the rapidly shifting sands in the market.


It has X factor, for sure, and truly lives up to the ‘rugged’ moniker with its body modifications and upscaled off-road performance. But as a total package, a ute with the lot, we have to hesitate at base camp before heading up to the highest peak.

Model release date: 1 April 2018

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