1 Oct 2015
Toyota threw its hat in the LCV-based wagon ring for the first time in more than two decades with the arrival of the Hilux-based Fortuner.
Starting from $47,990 and made available range-wide in six-speed manual and automatic guises, the seven-seater boasted serious off-road and towing prowess with more civilised road manners.
The model range was available in GX, GXL and new Crusade models with the 2.8-litre turbodiesel four-cylinder powerplant was shared with the HiLux and upgraded Prado.
It produced 130kW of power and torque of 420Nm (from 1400 to 2600rpm) with the manual and 450Nm (from 16000 to 2400rpm) when teamed with the automatic.
Fuel economy claims from the 80-litre tank were 7.8 litres of diesel per 100km for the manual and 8.6 for the automatic the latter claimed 2800kg braked towing capacity while the former's braked towing rating was 3000kg.
Among its highlights were 279mm of ground clearance, a 700mm wading depth, a dual range transfer case, a rear diff lock and locally-developed underbody protection and bull bar packages.
Mechanically the Fortuner shared its front suspension - a double wishbone, coil springs, anti-roll bar and damper set-up - with the HiLux, but received its own five-link, coil, anti-roll bar and damper-equipped rear end.
Among the standard fare was seating for seven, a sliding and folding middle row and a third row that folded up to the side of the boot area, leaving cargo space of 200 litres with seven aboard, between 654 and 716 when five are seated (depending on the legroom requirements) and a maximum of 1702 litres with two up and loaded to the roofline.
Also on the standard features list were cloth trim, Bluetooth phone and audio link, three 12 volt sockets, air conditioning with rear vents for both rows, reach and rake adjustable steering, a rear diff lock, touchscreen controls for the USB-input equipped infotainment system, cruise control, side steps and 17-inch steel wheels.
Standard safety features range wide include stability (including trailer sway control) and traction control, seven airbags (dual front, side, curtain and a driver's knee airbag), four-wheel disc brakes, a reversing camera and hill-start assist control.
The mid-spec GXL added 17-inch alloy wheels, keyless entry and ignition, rear parking sensors, a leather-wrapped wheel, fog lights, privacy window tint and the descent control system.
A new Crusade flagship added leather trim, satnav, digital radio reception, a powered tailgate, single-zone climate-control, a leather/wood steering wheel, bi-LED headlights, 18-inch alloy wheels, a 220-volt socket in the middle row and a power-adjustable driver’s seat.