Toyota Hilux Review

Find out more about the Toyota Hilux in the latest MOTORS Review

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Out of 5


  • Off-road capability
  • Trusted badge name
  • Hugely reliable


  • Not the most economical in class
  • Larger diesel engine unavailable in UK
  • Automatic gearbox unrefined

The Toyota Hilux is arguably world’s most famous pick-up truck. It was first introduced to the world in 1968, and since then has spanned eight generations. The latest eighth-generation model went on sale in 2016 and is available as in Single Cab, Extra Cab and Double Cab configurations.

By the time the latest Hilux was introduced, the earlier seventh-generation model had been on sale for the best part of 12 years. Because of its immense popularity, those in the market for a used example should be spoilt for choice. Thanks to the Hilux’s famous reliability, it shouldn’t be too tricky to find a good example, either.

The latest Hilux differs from the older model in the fact that it has a far more butch appearance. It’s longer and wider than before and has a more commanding presence on the road. The cabin has also been significantly improved, with top-specification Hilux models gaining plenty of standard equipment.

While the seventh-generation model was available with a 2.5-litre diesel or 3.0-litre diesel engine – the latter of which commanded the majority of sales in the UK – the new Hilux is only available with one engine – is a 2.4-litre diesel unit.

Latest model


The current Toyota Hilux went on sale in the UK in 2016, so it is still fairly new to market. As mentioned earlier, it is now larger in size than its predecessor – no doubt an attempt on Toyota’s part to keep up with the likes of the larger Ford Ranger, Mitsubishi L200 and Nissan Navara.

Aesthetically, the new Hilux is a fairly dramatic departure from the model it replaces. It is more boxy and aggressive in its stance, with narrower swept back headlights, a bold chrome grille and large Toyota badge commanding most of your attention at the front of the truck.

While the Hilux is available in three different configurations – Single, Extra and Double Cab – Double Cab models will be the best seller in the UK. Customers who opt for this configuration will find it has enough space for four adults to sit comfortably on longer journeys. While it can fit five adults, customers will likely find that this it is only comfortable to do so over shorter journeys.

Inside, the cabin has also been revitalised and now looks and feels far more modern – it certainly doesn’t hint at the Hilux’s commercial vehicle origins.

There are four trim levels available with the Hilux. There is the entry-level Active trim – which is only trim level available on the Single and Extra Cab Hilux – Icon, Invincible and Invincible X – which is the flagship model.

Value for money


As the entry-level Active trim level is aimed at the commercial, a Hilux in this grade is rather sparsely equipped. That said, they still gain Bluetooth and USB connectivity, as well as a CD player and radio. Prices for a Hilux Active start at £22,995 for the Single Cab, £24,825 for the Extra Cab and £25,755 for the Double Cab.


Icon trim and above are only available with the Hilux Double Cab. The Icon specification adds standard features such as a seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system that incorporates a DAB radio, Bluetooth connectivity, 17-inch alloys, all-terrain tyres and a reversing camera. Prices start at £27,680.

The Invincible specification adds standard features such as LED headlights, LED daytime running lights, 18-inch alloys, keyless entry and start, dual zone climate control and safety features such as a pre-collision system that includes pedestrian detection and lane departure warning. Prices for this model move up to £29,850.

The Flagship Hilux Invincible X gains satellite navigation, front and rear parking sensors and two-tone machined alloys. Prices for the top-flight model start at £33,765.


If you don’t fancy spending those sorts of sums of money on a brand new Hilux, an older 2014 model in Invincible specification that has satellite navigation and a rear view camera can be had for around £17,000.


Looks and image


Compared with the previous generation Hilux, the new model is far more grown up in its appearance and is certainly one of the better looking vehicles in its class.

While the entry-level Active models are fairly basic in terms of their appearance, thanks to standard-fit steel wheels and a black plastic front bumper, they are still rather imposing to look at thanks to their height and muscular stance.

Higher specification models lose the black bumpers and steel wheels, instead featuring body-coloured panels, chrome brightwork and 17- or 18-inch alloys depending on which model you opt for.

These changes help the Hilux come across as a far more premium offering than its predecessor, which was starting to show its age towards the end of its 12-year production run.

Video review

Space and practicality


The Single Cab Hilux features two seats, although it does gain more load space, while the Extra Cab feature two additional fold down seats in the back.

Because of this, the majority of Hilux buyers in the UK will decide to go for the Double Cab model, thanks to its superior practicality. This is a proper five-seater, and features a conventional seating layout with two full-size doors providing access to the back of the cabin.

The Hilux Double Cab offers a decent amount of rear leg- and headroom, meaning that four adults will be able to cover long distances in relative comfort. While there is enough room for five passengers, it is likely that travelling with this many people on board is only comfortable over shorter distances.

As far as load lugging capabilities go, the Hilux can carry a payload of up to 1,120kg in its load bed, while it is rated to tow up to 3,200kg. While these figures are impressive, a Nissan Navara can carry up to 100kg more, and can also tow 3,500kg.



The 2016 Toyota Hilux is available with just one engine option – a 2.4-litre diesel unit. This is smaller than both of the power plants that were available with the seventh-generation Hilux, which was available with either a 2.5- or 3.0-litre unit.

The new 2.4-litre power plant produces a respectable 161bhp and 400Nm of torque, and can get the Hilux from zero to 60mph in around 12.6 seconds, which is decent but by no means exceptional. It comes as standard with a six-speed manual transmission, although an automatic is available.

While the engine in the new Hilux might be smaller than the 3.0-litre engine that was available in the older model, it is only produces 8bhp less.

Running costs


A big benefit of opting for a new Hilux with its smaller engine is the fact that it is more economical and produces less CO2 emissions than the older engines.

With the manual ‘box, Toyota claims the Hilux can manage a combined fuel economy figure of up to 40.4mpg, while CO2 emissions fall as low as 185g/km.

That said, though, specifying the automatic transmission will compromise these figures. Combined cycle fuel economy drops to 36.2mpg, while CO2 emissions are increased to 204g/km.

If you’re set on purchasing a used seventh-generation Hilux, be prepared for slightly worse economy figures. The 2.5-litre engine boasts an average fuel consumption figure of 38.7mpg and CO2 emissions of 194g/km.

The larger 3.0-litre engine, on the other hand, manages 36.7mpg and emits 203g of CO2 per kilometre. Option for an automatic transmission will cause fuel consumption to fall to 32.8mpg, while CO2 emissions rise to 227g/km.

Things to look out for

The Toyota Hilux is one of the most reliable vehicles ever produced. Those who have seen the famous Top Gear episode where one survives being placed on top of a building before it is demolished will have a fairly good idea of how long-lasting they are.

Some owners have reported that the fuel injectors on older models can pose a problem, which can lead to rattling, misfires and eventual failure to start. However, these issues can be fixed by replacing them.

That said, if you are in the market for a used example, be sure to perform all the regular checks that you would do on any other car. Search for rust and any other signs of unusual wear and tear.



The pick-up market is becoming more and more crowded, as various manufacturers vie for superiority in the popular sector. The Toyota Hilux is rivalled by the likes of the Nissan Navara, Mitsubishi L200, Ford Ranger and Volkswagen Amarok. Other contenders include the Fiat Fullback and SsangYong Musso.

As the Hilux is only available with one engine in the UK, those who are after a pick-up with a bit more shove might find the 3.0-litre V6 Amarok or the twin-turbo Navara more appealing options.

Compared with some rivals, the Hilux can’t quite compete when it comes to towing ability, as the Navara and Ranger are both rated to tow as much as 3,500kg, whereas the Hilux can only manage 3,200kg.

Depreciation warning

Thanks to the credibility that the Toyota badge carries, and the popularity of the Hilux as a model, it is expected that the latest iteration of the pick-up should do rather well when it comes to holding its value.

Trims explained

There are four trim levels available with the current Hilux, as well as three cab configurations – single, extra and double.


Active is the entry-level specification for the Hilux, and is available in all three cab configurations. Standard features include Bluetooth connectivity, USB connectivity, a radio and CD player.

This trim level is aimed at commercial buyers, and features a more rugged exterior with black plastic front bumpers and steel wheels.


Icon, Invincible and Invincible X trims are only available as double cabs.

Icon trim adds standard features such as a seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system, 17-inch alloys, privacy glass, electric folding mirrors, DAB radio and a reversing camera.


The Invincible trim level builds on Icon models with standard equipment such as 18-inch alloys, dual-zone climate control, LED headlights and daytime running lights, and improved safety kit.

Prices start at £29,850.

Invincible X

The top-of-the-range Invincible X models gain front and rear parking sensors, satellite navigation and two-tone 18-inch alloys.

Prices start from £33,795.


  1. Hilux is available with in single, extra and double cab configurations
  2. One of the most well-known and dependable pick-ups available
  3. Four trim levels available: Active, Icon, Invincible and Invincible X
  4. Only one engine available on new models
  5. Invincible specification will likely be the most popular of the range
  6. Rated to tow up to 3,200kg
  7. Can carry a payload of up to 1,055kg
  8. Available with either a manual or automatic transmission
  9. Active specification is aimed at commercial buyers
  10. Rivals such as the Nissan Navara can tow more than the Hilux