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2012 Toyota Hilux (DLX, DLX+, SR, SR+) Review


First released in Japan in 1967, and one year later throughout Europe, the legendary Toyota Hilux has been a dominant presence in the global pick-up market for almost 45 years.
2012 Toyota Hilux photo -2012 Toyota Hilux photo -
To date, the world’s favourite pick-up has recorded cumulative global sales of over 13 million units. Last year, global sales reached 549,000 units, an increase of 25% over the previous year. In Europe, 21,866 Hilux vehicles were sold in 2010, representing close to 25% of the segment and making the Toyota pick-up the leader for the third consecutive year.
2012 Toyota Hilux photo2012 Toyota Hilux photo
Renowned for its quality, durability and outstanding reliability, the unstoppable Hilux continues to set new endurance records and conquer the most hostile environments throughout the world. Last year alone, Hilux pick-ups prepared by specialists Arctic Trucks conquered both an Icelandic volcano and the freezing territory of Antarctica.
2012 Toyota Hilux photo2012 Toyota Hilux photo
On 25th March, a few days after the eruption of Iceland’s infamous Eyjarfjallajökull volcano began, two Hilux pick-ups equipped with giant, 38” low-pressure tyres proved ideal transport for scientists battling through the country’s legendary extremes of weather and terrain to set up monitoring equipment before the mountain blew its top and brought chaos to the skies of Europe with a 30,000 ft high plume of ash.
2012 Toyota Hilux photo2012 Toyota Hilux photo
Later in 2010, between 10th November and 5th December, four Hilux equipped with standard 3.0 D-4D diesel engines transported expedition members of the Indian National Centre for Antarctic and Ocean Research (NCAOR) on a 4,600 km round trip across the most hostile environment in the world to reach the South Pole. Faced with temperatures as low as -56oC and altitudes of over 3,400 m, the Hilux recorded a lower fuel consumption and higher average speed than any equivalent Antarctic vehicle.
The Hilux 2012 features a new, sophisticated exterior design, refined interior quality with improved levels of standard equipment and a new, expanded, four grade line-up available in Single Cab, Extra Cab and Double Cab body styles.
The new pick-up will be available in 36 European countries, and more than 135 throughout the world. With anticipated European sales of almost 29,000 units in 2011, the Toyota Hilux success story is set to continue.
2012 Toyota Hilux photo2012 Toyota Hilux photo
Refined interior quality and more sophisticated exterior design
— New interior offering passenger car levels of convenience
— Improved sensory quality throughout the cabin
— Comprehensive standard specification and advanced, high technology equipment
— New, durable yet more sophisticated exterior design
The Hilux 2012 features extensive revisions to both its interior and exterior design. The interior changes include improved sensory quality throughout the cabin, and passenger car levels of convenience.
A new, horizontal centre instrument cluster design reinforces the breadth and roominess of the cabin. The centre cluster is clearly divided into two sections. The upper part incorporates Toyota Touch, a 6.1” touch screen multimedia unit. The lower part houses new designs for both manual and automatic air-conditioning controls.
The driver’s instrument cluster has been redesigned to enhance meter clarity, and SR and SR+ grades are now equipped with Optitron meters.
A new, more modern steering wheel design incorporates grade-differentiated switchgear.
2012 Toyota Hilux photo2012 Toyota Hilux photo
Perceived quality has been significantly improved through the adoption of uniformly darker finishes with a greater colour consistency throughout the interior. This sense of increased sophistication is further enhanced through new, silver ornamentation to the display audio unit, steering wheel and gearshift knob. A choice of four seat upholstery finishes, including leather, offers improved durability and stronger grade differentiation.
The new exterior design gives the Hilux 2012 a distinctive, instantly recognisable presence, whilst maintaining the legendary toughness essential for professional work.
The front of the vehicle is entirely new from the A pillar forwards. It combines an image of rugged durability appropriate to a ‘workhorse’ with a more curved, three-dimensional image reflecting the vehicle’s SUV-like appeal to the growing leisure segment of the European pick-up market.
The flowing lines of a new bonnet design extend into a new, more sophisticated, reverse trapezoid-shaped radiator grille. The grille is flanked by powerful headlamp clusters which project beyond the bodywork extremities to enhance turn signal visibility. A new front bumper design incorporates a large air intake flanked by integrated fog lamp housing.
In profile, the Hilux 2012’s clean, robust bodywork is enhanced by a new front and rear wing design which incorporates a strong, rearward-flowing character line adding a powerful sense of movement. The vehicle profile is further enhanced by new, robust 15” and sporting 17” steel and alloy wheel designs, and new door mirrors featuring integrated turn signals on SR and SR+ grade models.
2012 Toyota Hilux photo2012 Toyota Hilux photo
To the rear, new combination lamp clusters and a new high level stop lamp match the projecting design of the headlamps to maximise visibility. And ‘workhorse’ DLX grade models mark the reintroduction of a tough, durable flat bumper design.
The Hilux 2012 will be available in a range of 8 exterior body colours, of which two, Dark Steel and Silky Gold, are new.
New grade structure, enhanced standard equipment specification
— Expanded, four grade range meets the needs of ‘workhorse’, ‘dual usage’ and ‘leisure’ users
— Newly added DLX+ grade for ‘workhorse’/‘dual usage’ customers
— Toyota Touch multimedia interface and Touch & Go satellite navigation available
In order to create a stronger differentiation between ‘workhorse’, ‘dual usage’ and ‘leisure’ versions, the Hilux 2012 is now available in four grades: DLX, the new DLX+, SR and SR+.
With a choice of three body types, two engines, manual and automatic transmission and two- or four-wheel drive, Europe’s pick-up of choice now satisfies the requirements of an even wider professional and leisure customer base.
2012 Toyota Hilux photo2012 Toyota Hilux photo
DLX
The ‘workhorse’ of the Hilux 2012 range, the DLX is available in Single Cab, Extra Cab and Double Cab body styles, with a choice of 2WD 2.5 D-4D or 4WD 2.5 D-4D powertrains both mated to a 5-speed manual transmission.
DLX grade standard equipment has been enhanced by the addition of an Anti-lock Brake System (ABS), a rear differential lock, 16” steel wheels, black bumpers and a Heavy Duty pack featuring two battery units, a high power starter motor and an additional rear heater duct.
DLX+
Fulfilling a ‘workhorse’/‘dual usage’ role, the brand new DLX+ grade is available with 2WD or 4WD 2.5 D-4D powertrains mated to a manual transmission in all three body styles and with a 4WD 3.0 D-4D powertrain and manual transmission as a Double Cab only.
To the DLX standard equipment specification, DLX+ adds electric windows, remote door locking and electric, heated door mirrors.
The optional Styling pack for DLX+ Double Cab adds a body-coloured front bumper and wheel arch protectors, wider tyres and front fog lamps.
SR
Combining ‘dual usage’ and ‘leisure’ roles, the SR grade now offers 2WD or 4WD 2.5 D-4D powertrains with manual transmission in Extra Cab and Double Cab body styles, and the 4WD 3.0 D-4D engine with manual or automatic transmission as a Double Cab only.
The SR grade standard equipment specification has been further expanded through new 15” alloy wheels with a more robust design and the addition of Toyota Touch, a 6.1 inch, full colour, touch screen multimedia interface.
Toyota Touch incorporates an AM/FM radio, a CD/MP3 player, Bluetooth mobile phone connectivity with a music streaming facility, and a USB port for the connection of portable music players, with the facility to display iPod album cover art.
In addition, a rear view camera is fitted as standard. The image is displayed on the Toyota Touch screen when reverse gear is engaged, to aid manoeuvrability in confined spaces.
Upgrading the system to Touch & Go equips the Hilux 2012 with the best value-for-money navigation system on the market.
Using a compatible mobile phone, via Bluetooth, the system offers on-board connectivity to Google Local Search –the largest and most up-to-date search database in the world. Via Google Maps, destinations may be input remotely from the home or office computer, and Points of Interest may be downloaded for entry as destinations.
Toyota Touch & Go has been designed specifically to be both flexible and affordable. The system can be up-dated with the newest functions, as they become available.
2012 Toyota Hilux photo2012 Toyota Hilux photo
SR+
Top of the Hilux 2012 range and targeting ‘leisure’ users almost exclusively, the SR+ grade is only available as a Double Cab powered by the 2.5 D-4D 4WD engine with manual transmission or the 3.0 D-4D 4WD engine, with a choice of manual or automatic transmissions.
SR+ models have been upgraded with automatic headlamps and sporting, 17” alloy wheels.
Upgraded 2WD 2.5 D-4D, Hilux 2012 engine range now Euro V compliant
— 2WD 2.5 D-4D models benefit from a 24 hp power increase and improved fuel efficiency
— More robust, 4WD chassis design and increased towing capacity of 2.5 tons for 2WD 2.5 D-4D models
— Both 2.5 D-4D and 3.0 D-4D engines EURO V compliant
Through the introduction of variable nozzle turbocharging, Hilux 2012 2WD, 2.5 D-4D models now benefit from a 24 hp increase in power. The improved 2,494 cc, 16 valve, DOHC four-cylinder common-rail unit now develops 144 hp at 3,600 rpm and 343 Nm of torque at 2,000 rpm, matching the output of 2.5 litre four-wheel drive variants.
This power increase has been achieved through the adoption of a DC motor-actuated, variable nozzle vane-type turbocharger and the use of new injectors. The new injectors offer more precise fuel injection, improving throttle response and performance.
Durable, reliable and quiet, the 2.5 D-4D engine further benefits from several performance and efficiency enhancing measures. A high-performance turbo-intercooler not only increases power but also enhances emissions performance. A sophisticated Swirl Control System optimises the air-fuel mixture at low engine speeds, increasing torque availability without the need for acceleration. And an Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) cooler optimises EGR gas temperature to improve emissions performance.
As a result of the 24 hp power increase, the Hilux 2012 2.5 D-4D 2WD accelerates from 0-100 km/h in 14.1 seconds, and has a top speed of 170 km/h.
Despite these significant performance increases, combined cycle fuel consumption has been reduced by 1.0 l/100 km to 7.3 l/100 km and CO2 emissions lowered by 26 g/km to only 193 g/km.
Complimenting this power increase, Hilux 2012 2WD versions are now equipped with the more robust chassis design of 4WD models. This not only improves vehicle ground clearance, but also increases the two-wheel drive models’ towing capacity to 2.5 tons.
The 3.0 D-4D engine, a 2982 cc, 16 valve, DOHC four-cylinder common- rail turbodiesel, develops 171 hp at 3,600 rpm and 343 Nm of torque from 1,400 to 3,400 rpm when mated to a 5-speed manual transmission. Equipped with an optional, 5-speed automatic gearbox, the unit’s maximum torque rises to an impressive 360 Nm from 1,400 to 3,200 rpm.
Only available in 4WD format, the 3.0 D-4D with manual transmission will accelerate from 0-100 km/h in 12.1 seconds, and has a top speed of 170 km/h. It returns an average fuel consumption of 7.6 l/100 km, and generates CO2 emissions of 199 g/km.
Mated to the 5-speed automatic gearbox, the 3.0 D-4D’s 0-100 km/h acceleration improves to 12 seconds, and top speed rises to 175 km/h. Average fuel consumption is 8.6 l/100 km, with CO2 emissions of 227 g/km.
The manual transmissions of both the 3.0 and 2.5 litre D-4D engines are especially smooth at tick-over, which makes driving in 1st gear on engine idle a smooth and controlled, walking-speed experience. This allows steep descents in rugged terrain to be made without losing control of the vehicle. This superior control and high torque output allows the Hilux 2012 to climb steep slopes on engine idle only with equal ease.
2012 Toyota Hilux photo2012 Toyota Hilux photo
Both units benefit from high torque output across a wide engine speed range -the 2.5 D-4D generating 343 Nm between 1,600 and 2,800 rpm, manual versions of the 3.0 litre engine matching this figure between an even wider, 1,400-3,400 rpm band- offering optimum performance at any speed, across any terrain.
Thanks to the adoption of a Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) both 2.5 D-4D and 3.0 D-4D engines are now EURO V compliant. The DPF system collects and regenerates PM (Particulate Matter) in exhaust gas and efficiently oxidizes carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon.

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