Toyota's HiLux Tonka Concept channels your inner child
Last year, the Toyota HiLux was the best-selling vehicle in Australia – it was the first time that a non-passenger-car took the title. This year, Toyota celebrates its 80th birthday, plus the classic Tonka toy truck brand turns 70. Toyota Australia has decided to mark those milestones by creating the rock-crawling HiLux Tonka Concept.
At the base of the one-off vehicle is a top-of-the-line production HiLux, namely the SR5 double cab 4x4 with a 2.8-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine.
That vehicle has been given an extra 150 mm (6 inches) of ground clearance, along with a high-riding axle, heavy-duty suspension and 35-inch tires. It also sports a new front bar, a 6mm-thick alloy bash plate, chassis-protecting tubular side rails, and off-road LED lighting on both the front bar and the roof.
Besides its custom "Sun Fusion" yellow paint job, the truck additionally features carbon fiber skins on its hood and tailgate – both of which incorporate air scoops/vents for optimizing air flow. The tailgate also has an integrated spoiler, along with a strap instead of a handle for pulling it open.
A removable tubular frame in the bed of the truck holds gear such as diesel fuel cans in place, along with a fire extinguisher, axe, shovel and high-lift jack. It's all stuff that the company describes as "recovery gear needed for extreme off-road driving."
And no, there are no plans to commercially produce a HiLux based on the concept. If you're in Australia this year, however, you can see the vehicle on display at auto shows and similar events around the country. And even if you don't get to see in in person, you can catch it in action in the following video.
This isn't the first Toyota/Tonka collaboration, incidentally. In 2015, a Tonka 4-Runner was presented at the SEMA auto show.