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Hefty price tag on new semi-EV Hilux and Fortuner

Hefty price tag on new semi-EV Hilux and Fortuner

Toyota engineers bent their minds around the idea of turning one of the company’s most recognised vehicles, the Hilux, into a partially electric vehicle without sacrificing its legendary capabilities.

The result is an unconventional merger between the proven 2.8 litre diesel and a 48V charger battery combination that drives a generator which delivers up to 12 kW additional power to the diesel engine.

The same technological whizz has been applied to the Fortuner adding to its popularity as a class-leading mid-size SUV.

“By adding a hybrid 48V system to the Hilux and Fortuner, Toyota said it strengthens its inclusive multi-technology pathway to carbon neutrality.”

Both these model ranges have now become available in Namibia through the Toyota SA dealer network.


The powerful 2.8 litre diesel engine has been strengthened by the addition of a hybrid 48V system specifically designed for the unique demands of Toyota’s dual use pick-up and SUV lifestyles.

The engine drives a compact motor generator using a belt system, which in turn charges the new 48V lithium battery, which is small enough (7.6 kg) to be installed under the rear seats to minimise impact. This 48V battery also supplies the vehicle’s 12V system through a new DC/DC converter.

Like Toyota’s full hybrid electric systems, the new battery is charged during deceleration, efficiently regenerating braking energy which would otherwise be lost, whilst also adding additional braking performance. Once charged, the battery sends up to 12kW of power and 65Nm of torque through the motor generator to the engine to enhance acceleration, power and efficiency.

The robust motor generator is compact and has been designed to withstand the harsher working environments experienced by commercial vehicles, while the engine has been modified to adapt to the hybrid system.

Combining with the motor generator is the powerful and proven Euro 6d-compliant, DOHC, 16 valve, 2.8-litre diesel engine which generates 150kW at 3,400 rpm and 500Nm of torque between 1,600 and 2,800rpm.

Toyota says that the new 48V combines responsive acceleration, improved braking performance and greater fuel efficiency with a smoother ride whether on the road or tackling tough terrain.

An enhanced stop-start system allows the engine to remain off for longer periods which, coupled with the benefits of the hybrid 48V system, improves fuel efficiency by up to 5% compared to the conventional diesel.

Motor generator power allows for smoother acceleration when negotiating rough terrain and regenerative braking supports safer downhill manoeuvring, while the engine’s idling speed is reduced from 720rpm to 600rpm which increases a driver’s ability to easily control the vehicle.

For the first time on Hilux and Fortuner, the new Multi-terrain Select system provides even better performance and control by giving the driver the option to adjust vehicle stability control settings according to the specific driving conditions.

Special attention has been paid to ensuring the Hilux and Fortuner 48V possess formidable water-crossing capabilities. The 48V can drive through water up to 700mm deep thanks to waterproofing of the 48V battery and DC-DC converter while new anti-slip and strengthening measures on the motor generator pulley and belt ensure optimum performance, even when wet.

The various Hilux and Fortuner models price in the region of N$800,000 to one million. All Hilux and Fortuner models are covered by the three-year/100 000 km warranty and a 9-services/90 000 km service plan. Service intervals are set at 10 000 km and owners can purchase a variety of service plan and warranty extensions.


About The Author

SADC Correspondent

SADC correspondents are independent contributors whose work covers regional issues of southern Africa outside the immediate Namibian ambit. Ed.