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Dakar rally-inspired Toyota Hilux GR Sport

With two wins in the Dakar Rally, Toyota Hilux trucks are legendary, and Toyota is always proud to highlight these accomplishments. Toyota Gazoo Racing’s success in this extreme competition inspired the development of the Hilux GR Sport, Toyota’s brand-new top-of-the-line model.

A partnership between Toyota Gazoo Racing, the Japanese giant’s motorsports arm and GR resulted in a pickup that offers more than just a few cosmetic upgrades to the standard model. The popular Hilux pick-up truck received some mechanical changes, sharper looks, and sportier interior trim. Although adding ‘Sport’ to a pickup truck initially raised some eyebrows, we think Toyota did well with the Hilux GR Sport.  

Hilux GR Sport: a part of Dakar for everyone

Toyota Gazoo Racing driver Nasser Al-Attiyah said:

“The Toyota Hilux has a legendary reputation for toughness and reliability. This new model, which was inspired by our iconic Dakar race cars, brings new levels of driving experience both on-road and when going off-road. It truly encapsulates the spirit of our race cars, bringing a part of Dakar to buyers all over the world.” 

The Hilux GR Sport has been “designed to capture the imagination of customers whose active lifestyles go well beyond the everyday, giving them an ideal vehicle for adventure journeys and sporting pursuits”. With dedicated suspension features, Toyota has made driving even more enjoyable, with improved control, responsiveness and grip. GR-themed exterior and interior design features give the Hilux GR Sport a unique style and highlight its quality. It’s a pickup truck you’ll be proud to drive. Here’s why.

More enjoyable driving experience & improved performance

If you thought that the Toyota Hilux GR Sport pick-up would just be another upgrade with a few bodywork changes, you’re in for a pleasant surprise. Increasing the front spring stiffness and installing monotube shock absorbers are some of the suspension modifications made by the brand’s engineers. Monotube technology increases the piston area inside the damper body, resulting in faster responses and improved heat dissipation and performance. The updated components have been painted red to make the changes more obvious.

Adjustments to the suspension on the GR Sport model are in line with the changes applied to the updated Hilux pick-up in late 2020, which include upgraded rear leaf springs and bushes. As a result of these changes, the Toyota Hilux GR Sport pickup truck offers a more comfortable and controlled ride with improved on-road handling, allowing you to take full advantage of its 204hp 2.8-litre turbodiesel engine.

The combination of ‘stiffer springs’ and ‘comfortable ride’ may not convince everyone since these two features are not commonly associated. The monotube damper design, however, increases perceived comfort while reducing body roll due to its faster reaction and superior high-performance capability.

The Toyota Hilux GR Sport pick-up truck comes with an automatic transmission as standard as well as Downhill Assist Control, a limited-slip differential and ‘Active Traction Control’ – the latter of which is geared more towards off-roading than cornering.

Modern exterior with a hint of heritage inspiration

With a black G-pattern mesh grille and a prominent horizontal bar displaying the TOYOTA name, recalling the iconic 4th generation Hilux of the 1980s, the new Toyota Hilux GR Sport models stand out from the rest of the Hilux pick-up truck line-up.

Front fog light surrounds are larger than on other Hilux pickups, amplifying the powerful frontal design of the GR Sport truck. 17-inch alloy wheels are fitted with all-terrain tyres and finished in black. Toyota maintains a black theme throughout the truck, including the mirror casings, side steps, overfenders, tailgate handle, and a standard sports bar. There is also discreet GR Sport badging on the vehicle. 

Hilux GR Sport is available in pure white solid paint, platinum white pearl (pearlescent paint), and metallic paints: decuma grey, galaxy black, silver blade, and nebula blue.

Sporty interior with plenty of space

The cabin features black leather and synthetic suede sports seats with red perforations and contrast stitching. Matching black leather 4-spoke steering wheel, gear shifter and handbrake are also included. GR badges appear on the animation graphic of the information display, starter button, back of the seats, and even carpet mats, while the aluminum pedals, carbon-fiber-style dashboard, a red deco line across the instrument panel, and blue lighting on the door panels complete the sporty look of the Hilux GR Sport truck.

The Toyota Hilux GR Sport has five seats, which is standard for a double-cab pickup truck. You can transport your crew from one site to another or enjoy a weekend getaway with your loved ones in the spacious Hilux GR Sport cabin. With a cabin length of 1,697mm, width of 1,480mm, and height of 1,170mm, there is plenty of room to travel comfortably. Among the amenities included in the cabin of this new Toyota double cab pick-up truck are:

  • two rear coat hooks
  • driver & passenger seatback pockets & shopping bags hooks
  • front & rear bottle and cup holders
  • lockable glovebox
  • rear passenger under-bench storage
  • sunglasses holder

An abundance of standard features 

Like the Hilux Invincible, the GR Sport pick-up is equipped with premium features, including an 8″ multimedia screen, JBL sound system with nine speakers, Bluetooth, DAB, USB, smartphone integration, navigation, and heated front and rear seats.

LED headlights, combination lamps, keyless entry, push-button start, and dual-zone air conditioning are also standard when you buy or lease the Hilux GR Sport truck. 

Several safety features come standard with the Toyota Hilux GR Sport pickup, including front and rear parking sensors, a reverse camera, and a pedestrian and cyclist detection system. A 360-degree Panoramic View Monitor gives an all-around picture of the vehicle’s location for easier maneuvering over challenging terrain and in limited spaces. As well as Road Sign Assist, Adaptive Cruise Control, Brake Assist, traction control, trailer sway control, vehicle stability control, and lane departure alert with brake-induced steering, the vehicle comes with a host of other features. Moreover, the Hilux GR Sport pickup received a 5 Star Euro NCAP safety rating.

Outstanding payload and towing capacity

The GR Sport model is available exclusively as a double cab pickup version, maintaining the Hilux truck’s impressive load-carrying and towing capabilities.

This means the Hilux GR Sport pickup can carry up to 1,010kg of cargo with a gross vehicle weight of 3,210kg. For a braked trailer, the towing capacity is 3,500kg, while for an unbraked trailer, it’s 750kg.

How much does it cost to lease a Toyota Hilux GR Sport?

Pricing for the Toyota GR Sport starts at £48,160, including VAT. Yes, it is a lot, but it’s still a bargain compared to a Ford Ranger MS-RT, which costs an eye-watering £49K before VAT. Toyota Hilux GR Sport is also more affordable than a Ranger Raptor, priced at around £54,000 with VAT.

The Hilux GR Sport is a fantastic pick-up truck with a lot of standard equipment. When you look at our Toyota Hilux leasing deals, the GR Sport model is not far off the Hilux Invincible or Invincible X when you compare double cab automatic pickups. At the time of writing this blog, our Hilux Invincible X lease deal is just £14 more expensive than the GR Sport lease. For such a small difference, leasing this brand-new model makes sense if you’re looking for a pickup truck.

If you’re interested in securing your Hilux GR Sport lease deal, request your free quote today and you’ll be behind the wheel in no time.

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