New Toyota Hilux GR-S wields 165 kW of Gazoo venom
Toyota South Africa is honing its Hilux bakkie with the GR Sport aka GR-S moniker that comes with a range of unique design elements as well as dynamic tweaks to differentiate it from its counterparts.
Based on the 2.8 GD-6 4x4 variant, there's a lot going on with how the Hilux GR-S looks, of course. It wears a new suit in the form of a large and prominent black front grille, a horizontal crossbar, plus oversized Toyota lettering.
The LED headlights also boast a special treatment that's further complemented by vertically-stacked air ducts with integrated LED fog lights. The Hilux GR-S borrows its bumper from the Raider variant, and to make a strong case for itself as a sportier version, the bumpers spawn wider black overfenders with contrasting inserts.
While the black shade has become the new sexy, the Hilux GR-S gets darkened mirror caps, black door handles, black side steps, as well as a rear styling bar with GR insignia. For added appeal, GR side decals on the doors can be fitted at an extra fee. The Hilux GR-S can be bought in a choice of four exterior colours that mimic the GR brand shades; Arizona Red, Graphite Grey, Attitude Black, and Glacier White.
To remind occupants that they're inside something sportier, the interior of the Hilux GR-S gets a new instrument cluster with metallic bezels and red needles; a bespoke leather steering wheel with red stitching, and aluminium pedals — features you won't find on another Hilux model. Not a standard one, at least.
Unlike the brushed finish in the Legend models, the GR-S variant features carbon fibre trim, red accent trim, race-inspired front seats with Alcantara inserts, GR branding on the headrests, red accent panels, and power adjustment for the driver's seat.
For enhanced handling prowess on and off the beaten track, the Hilux GR-S is bolstered with new monotube shock absorbers, stiffer coil springs, and 17" alloy wheels finished in Titanium.
Under the hood beats the familiar 2.6-litre 4-cylinder unit with 165 kW and 550 Nm of torque - an increase of 15 kW and 50 Nm over the standard Hilux 2.6 GD-6 4x4. Although the GR-S moniker is supposed to only focus on cosmetics and handling upgrades, Toyota took initiative by fiddling with the ECU to enhance the power figures.
With the power upgrades, the Hilux GR-S 4x4 is 0.65 seconds quicker off the line while shuffling through a revised 6-speed automatic transmission with an auto-limited-slip differential.
The Hilux GR-S' specifications match those of the Legend model except for the omission of an auto-dimming rear-view mirror and JBL sound system. However, it adds a panoramic view monitor.
The Hilux GR-S 2.8 GD-6 4x4 6AT carries a price tag of R865,400 and that includes a 9-service/90,000 km service plan and a 3-year/100,000 km warranty. Service and warranty plan extensions can also be purchased from any Toyota dealer.
Like all new Toyotas, the Hilux GR-S gets Toyota Connect, including a complimentary 15 GB in-car Wi-Fi allocation.