Hilux in SUV form: Toyota Fortuner
Car News

Hilux in SUV form: Toyota Fortuner

November 8,2023
6 min read



The Toyota Hilux is undeniably one of the most ubiquitous names in the automotive world, pretty much being synonymous with pickup trucks. This is where the Toyota Fortuner finds its origin, albeit in a more modern and family-centric form factor. Introduced back in 2004, the Toyota SUV has always been successful in several Asian countries, though its sales numbers in the Middle East are nothing to scoff at.

In the UAE, the Fortuner is positioned between the RAV4 and Prado. The 2023 Toyota Fortuner in UAE is available in two variants – GXR and VXR. The Fortuner is a true blue-blooded SUV that serves its purpose as a car that can not only carry a family around on paved surfaces but also when solid ground gives way to less-than-ideal terrafirma. So, how does the Toyota Fortuner stack up?

Does the Toyota Fortuner look as tough as it sounds?

As stated earlier, the Fortuner is based on the utterly indestructible Hilux pickup truck. The outgoing model represents the second generation of the Fortuner, which made its debut in 2015. The Japanese automaker made significant cosmetic upgrades to the 2020 model year of the Fortuner, which spruced up the overall look & feel of this blue-collar SUV and helped bring it into its most sleek yet brute form.


The front fascia will likely be the biggest draw for most buyers of the Fortuner. It boasts a large three-slatted grille with shiny elements that trail from the LED headlights down to the lower apron. The chunky bumper is not only well-sculpted but also features a sporty-looking front bumper, accentuating the contemporary styling cues of the second-gen Fortuner.

Adding to this SUV’s beefy stance are its 18-inch alloy wheels, large wing mirrors, fixed side steps, deep wheel wells, and limited yet effective black cladding around the wheels. Of course, the fact that the Fortuner is a proper body-on-frame SUV only adds to its charm as a tough and dependable off-roader. The rear sports sleek LED taillights with a chrome bar on the tailgate, a roof-mounted spoiler, and a sporty-looking rear bumper (with a fake diffuser design).

How good is the interior of the Toyota Fortuner?

One of the aspects common between the Hilux’s and the Fortuner’s interior is immediately visible when one glances at the dashboard. While there are some generic design features here, the Fortuner gets a completely different middle stack design that looks more modern. The vertical style of the center stack is highlighted by the leather trim that stretches from top to bottom, with the design of the HVAC controls peculiar to the Fortuner.


The cabin of the new Toyota Fortuner is both spacious and well-built, with the seats up front and in the middle being accommodating yet comfortable. That said, even the middle row is not the best for tall adults, where the high perch can lead to certain folks feeling like they are sitting ‘on’ the vehicle rather than inside it. Materials onboard will stand the test of time, though not every piece of trim feels necessarily premium.

What is the Fortuner’s equipment list like?

Compared to the Hilux and its features, the new Toyota Fortuner ticks a few more boxes when it comes to the available equipment and the overall upscale feeling. Niceties include powered & retractable ORVMs, tri-zone climate control, faux-leather upholstery, powered front seats with ventilation, a cooled glovebox, cruise control, an 8-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay & Android Auto, push-button start, a 6-speaker audio system, and paddle shifters.


When it comes to the Fortuner’s safety-related items, there’s a part-time four-wheel-drive (4WD) system with a differential lock, rear parking sensors with 360-degree cameras, Blind Spot Monitor, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Tire Pressure Warning System, ABS with EBD, Vehicle Stability Control, Hill-Start Assist Control, and 7 airbags. Fair to say, the Toyota Fortuner feels as secure and tough as its appearance suggests it would be.

Toyota Fortuner specs in the UAE

The 2023 Toyota Fortuner comes with the brand’s 1GR-FE motor, which is a 4.0-liter naturally-aspirated six-cylinder petrol engine. This unit develops 235 hp and 376 Nm of maximum torque, which is then paired with a 5-speed automatic transmission. While the 2.7-ton, 7-seater Fortuner is not made for high speeds, it can still hit 100 km/h in around 9 seconds and a top speed of around 190 km/h.

As for the Fortuner’s fuel economy, the 4.0-liter V6 can drain the 80-liter tank quite quickly, with an average consumption of 9.6 km/l (10.4 L/100 km). While this kind of fuel consumption is understandable for an SUV based on a Hilux, the tractability of this V6 is impressive. Moreover, this unit is also known for being relatively quiet and refined – no annoying vibrations here. Off-road, there’s enough power here to crest most sand dunes sans much drama.

What’s the price of a new Toyota Fortuner?

In the United Arab Emirates, the 2023 Toyota Fortuner costs between AED 153,900 and AED 172,900 for the GXR and VXR variants, respectively. The Fortuner is definitely not flashy or swanky for a modern SUV. However, it has more than enough appeal to attract buyers who want a reliable and capable SUV with enough features and performance to fulfill day-to-day chores.


What is the fuel economy of Toyota Fortuner?

A: The fuel economy of the Toyota Fortuner is 9.6 km/l or 10.4 L/100 km.

How does the Toyota Fortuner compare to other SUVs in its class?

A: The Toyota Fortuner can be compared with other SUVs like the Mitsubishi Pajero, Kia Sorento, Nissan Patrol Safari, and GAC GS8.

Can you provide information about the available engine options for the Toyota Fortuner?

A: The Toyota Fortuner is powered by Toyota’s 1GR-FE 4.0-liter V6 petrol engine that’s equipped with 24 valves & Dual VVT-I technology, producing 235 horsepower and 376 Nm of torque.

What safety features does the Toyota Fortuner come equipped with?

A: Safety features on the Toyota Fortuner include 7 airbags, surround-view cameras, Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert, a Tire Pressure Warning System, ABS with EBD, Vehicle Stability Control, and Hill-Start Assist Control.


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