In recent months, Toyota has been experimenting with putting eco-friendly powertrains in the Hilux. But the current-generation model is over eight years old now, so the platform might not be a viable candidate for a hybrid version. But demand for cleaner emissions in some markets seems to be strong enough for the Japanese automaker to finally put an electrified Hilux into production.
Simply called the Hilux Hybrid 48V, this boasts electrification that comes from 48V mild-hybrid package which consists of an engine-driven generator, a DC/DC converter, and a lithium-ion battery pack nestled underneath the rear seats. This system does not allow the Hilux to drive on electric power alone, but it does get regenerative braking just like Toyota’s regular hybrid cars.
Under the hood is the updated version of the 1GD-FTV turbodiesel that produces 201hp and 500Nm. A fully charged battery can throw in an additional 16hp and 65Nm through the generator. Toyota claims a 5% improvement in fuel economy compared to pure diesel models. And speaking of fuel, the mild-hybrid Hilux can run on HVO100, a type of synthetic diesel made from sustainable sources.
As for off-road capability, the electrified Hilux gets enhanced terrain modes that can be left to their own devices or manually configured by the driver. Wading depth is a respectable 700mm thanks to waterproof casings for the battery and the converter, and an anti-slip drive belt for the generator. Additionally, Toyota Safety Sense and a cloud-based infotainment system are standard equipment.
Deliveries of the Hilux Hybrid 48V will begin in Europe in the middle of next year under the Toyota Professional network. This is a sub-brand that handles sales and various support services for Toyota commercial vehicles in the region.